Records of Marquette Civic Organizations

In recent posts, we have revealed archival collections about the Cambium Club at Northern Michigan University and the Paisano Club, an Italian fraternal organization. Many civic organizations in the Upper Peninsula are charters of global organizations that strive to improve the status of women, businesses and communities.

Zonta International is a global organization of executives and professionals working together to advance the status of women worldwide. The organization seeks to improve the legal, political, economic, health, educational and professional status of women through service and advocacy. In October 1972, a group of women gathered at the Marquette County Historical Society for an introduction to the Zonta International Club. The bylaws for the Marquette Zonta Club were approved by the board of directors and they held their first meeting on November 14, 1972. The Marquette Zonta Club records (1983-2004) contain, but are not limited to, committee meeting minutes, correspondence, newsletters, and fundraising material. The collection documents numerous events including City Clean-Up – Picnic Rocks, American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life, Literacy Day, the UP Children’s Museum, Harbor House and the Women’s Center.


The Marquette Federation of Women is another civic organization in the Marquette area whose endeavor is to improve the personal and professional lives of women in the Upper Peninsula. Established in 1926, the Marquette Federation of Women’s club continues to serve as an umbrella organization corroborating with other civic organizations and women’s groups in the Marquette area. The Federation purchased a house on the corner of Front and Ridge Streets in Marquette, Michigan for their club house, where it still stands today. The Marquette Federation of Women has been involved with a variety of community service and fundraising activities. This collection includes a club house history written in 1928, scrapbooks containing news clippings and photographs, correspondence, and house caretaker logs.

A number of Rotary Clubs can be found in the Marquette area. Rotary of Marquette and Marquette West Rotary Club records can be found at the Northern Michigan University Archives. The Rotary was established for members to come together from various backgrounds and talents to make a difference in the community, as well as the world. The Rotary Club of Marquette records (1994-1995) include, but are not limited to, lists of membership, board members, committees, constitution and bylaws, and meeting minutes. The Marquette West Rotary Club records (1979 – 2012) document the history and activities of the Marquette West Rotary Club, such as the annual Seafood Fest. This Festival is their most significant organizational activity and all proceeds are used to fund services to the community. The collection also documents the Rotary Youth Exchange, and the Club’s collaboration with other local and global service organizations.


Marquette Ambassadors with Representative Dominic Jacobetti in Lansing.

The Marquette Ambassadors Club was founded for those interested in economic business and community betterment. It was comprised of individuals from the community interested in bettering businesses in the area. The group regularly appeared before Michigan politicians as economic advocates for the city. This collection contains the club scrapbook and photographs of the Marquette Ambassadors Club from 1964-1969.

The Northern Michigan University Archives contains many other local organizations’ manuscript collections. For more information and a look at what other collections we have, take a look at our online finding aids.

By Morgan Paavola


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