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Woman's Humane League of Lancaster County Records

Identifier: MS 046


This collection contains the administrative, outreach, and publicity records of the Woman's Humane League of Lancaster County, a non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention of cruelty to, and care of, children, girls, aged persons, and animals within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. In more recent years, the mission of the Humane League of Lancaster County has been to ensure the health, happiness and welfare of domesticated animals in Lancaster County. Strengths of the collection include comprehensive minutes and financial records of the organization, and an extensive run of organizational newsletters. Additional strengths include a lengthy run of newspaper clippings from the 1950s through the 1980s.


  • 1917-1997,
  • Majority of material found within 1917-1985


Restrictions on Access

Access unrestricted.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

Photocopying and publication restricted by copyright. except by permission of copyright holder..

Biographical / Historical

On May 3, 1917, Miss Maud Haldeman, along with seventeen other women, met with John B. Graybill, a noted Lancaster attorney. The result of their meeting was the formation of the Woman's Humane League of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. The purpose of the organization was the "prevention of cruelty to, and care of, children, girls, aged persons, and animals within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and to enforce all laws enacted by the Pennsylvania legislature or by Congress for the protection of the children, girls, aged persons and animals." For twenty years complaints were investigated and resolved, but there was no shelter available for homeless animals. Beginning in 1937, animals were housed in kennels in Columbia, and then at the Fairgrounds in Lancaster (located on the Harrisburg Pike, next to Long's Park). As early as 1935, cases of cruelty towards children were reported to the women of the Woman's Humane League, but after Social Service agencies began to address the problems facing children, girls and aged persons, The Woman's Humane League of Lancaster County devoted all of its time and efforts to animal welfare. A "Men's Advisory Committee" was formed in 1946 to assist the ladies, and beginning with the minutes of the 1947 annual meeting the word "Woman's" was omitted from the league's name, and the name was later changed to the Humane League of Lancaster County. In 1948 the first man, Warren Broome, was accepted as an officer of the Board of Directors, Warren Broome. In 1956 the current property at 2195 Lincoln Hwy. East was purchased from Jack E. Cooke Kennels. The League's office was located in the rear room of the house until 1974, when the shelter building was completed. In 1988 a capital campaign fund, resulted in a new infirmary for the animals, a remodeled reception area, an isolation area for sick animals and additional office space. In 1997 major shelter renovations and improvements increased the comfort and safety for the animals and expanded service areas for customers and visitors. In 2001 the shelter opened a new Cat Adoption Center, featuring state of the art cat colony housing and improved care areas for felines and small mammals.


1.75 Linear feet (4 boxes)

Language of Materials



Collection: Organized into four series: Administrative records (minutes), Publications, Photographs, Publicity materials (newspaper clippings).

Ownership and Custodial History

All the materials in this collection were donated in April 2006 by the Humane League of Lancaster County.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Source of acquisition--Humane League of Lancaster County. Address--Lancaster, PA. Method of acquisition--Gift; Date of acquisition--2006..

Location of Originals Note

Holder of originals: This collection contains a facsimile copy of the original 1917-1934 minute book for the Woman's Humane League. The original can be found in the Lancaster County Historical Society Minute Books and Ledgers Collection.

Related Archival Materials

Lancaster County SPCA Records (MS 71: Custodian--Archives and Special Collections, Franklin and Marshall College: Address--Lancaster, PA.

Processing Information

Processing completed May 2006.

Description rules
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Franklin and Marshall College Special Collections Repository

PO Box 3003
Lancaster PA 17604 United States