Maureen Ursenbach Beecher collection

Maureen Ursenbach Beecher collection

Dates: bulk 1948-1997, 1909-1997 (bulk 1948-1997)

The collection contains materials gathered into four main series: (1) student and research files on Mormon women's history; (2) class notes; (3) personal files reflecting university and professional committees she served on; and (4) her personal research and address files. The addendum contains research files collected Maureen Ursenbach Beecher as well as materials from an English class.

  • Extent: 11 cartons (11 linear ft.). -- 2 boxes (1 linear ft.)
  • Creator: Beecher, Maureen Ursenbach
  • Call Number: MSS 2285
  • Repository: L. Tom Perry Special Collections; 20th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts; 1130 Harold B. Lee Library; Brigham Young University; Provo, Utah 84602;
  • Access Restrictions: Open for research. (Swiss-Mormon papers are copies of materials gathered and created by Paul-Anthon Nielson of Oberhofer, Switzerland. Use of those papers must be authorized by him.)
Languages and Scripts
Collection consists of eight series: 1. Maureen Ursenbach Beecher student and research files on Mormon Women's History, 1909, 1954-1997; 2. Maureen Ursenbach Beecher class notes and papers, 1948-1972; 3. Maureen Ursenbach Beecher university and professional committee files, 1981-1992; 4. Maureen Ursenbach Beecher personal research and addresses, 1972-1994; 5. Maureen Ursenbach Beecher collection addendum, undated; 6. Maureen Ursenbach Beecher publications, 1974-1997; 7. Series edited by Maureen Ursenbach Beecher, 1996-1997; and 8. Maureen Ursenbach Beecher papers presented in academic meetings, 1975-1997.
Conditions of Use
It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from Maureen Ursenbach Beecher collection must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Board of Curators.
Preferred Citation
Initial Citation: MSS 2285; Maureen Ursenbach Beecher collection; 20th Century Western and Mormon Manuscripts; L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University. Following Citations: MSS 2285, LTPSC.
Custodial History
These files were transferred to the Brigham Young University Library by the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute of Latter-day Saint History following Maureen's retirement. Maureen had left these files with instructions that they be transferred to the library when her office was emptied. An installment was received in December 2004.
Acquisition Information
Transferred; Joseph Fielding Smith Institute of Latter-day Saint History as per instruction from Beecher; 2004.
Other Finding Aids
Item-level inventory available online.
Related Material
See Maureen Ursenbach Beecher papers (MSS 1979).
Subject Terms
Beecher, Maureen Ursenbach--Archives; Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints--Switzerland--History; Alberta; Colleges and Universities; Education; Mormon Church--Switzerland--History; Mormon women--History; Mormons--Switzerland--History; Provo (Utah); Salt Lake City (Utah)
Genre / Form
Notes; Papers (Document genres)
Processing Information
Processed; David J. Whittaker; 2001.
Appraisal Information
LDS scholarship and historiography (20th century Western & Mormon Manuscripts collection development policy, 5.III, 2007).
Finding Aid ID Number
Finding Aid Title
Beecher (Maureen Ursenbach) collection
Finding Aid Author
Finding aid prepared by David J. Whittaker, Erin Chapman and Judi Crisp
Finding Aid Creator
This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2013-08-05T10:15-0600
Finding Aid Language
Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant, 2007-2008
Biographical Info:

Biographical History

Maureen Ursenbach Beecher was born March 19, 1935 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, to Charles Ursenbach and Margaret Lucille Harvey. In 1958, she left to serve in the Swiss-Austrian Mission for the LDS Church. She was a professor of English at BYU from 1981-1997 and Research Historian for the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute for Church History for the same time period. She is now retired living in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Maureen Ursenbach Beecher was born on March 19, 1935 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada to Charles Ursenbach and Margaret Lucille Harvey. After her father had filled a short term mission to Eastern Canada, he and her mother moved to Calgary, Alberta, Canada where the family's roots were firmly planted. Her parents would have four children: Harvey, Geraldine, and Lucille, and Maureen.

The house her parents built and moved into in 1928 would be the house that Maureen grew up in. Many joyful and sorrowful memories of her family were shared there. One of the most outstanding memories of her childhood is the day of her baptism, on Easter Sunday, 25 April 1943, and being confirmed by a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

School was always very easy for Maureen. She received many awards at Sunalta School in Calgary for academics. Maureen continued to excel throughout school and on to the University of Alberta, Calgary and Edmonton branches, receiving a Diploma in Secondary Education. After receiving her diploma, she proceeded to get her Bachelor of Science in English and Mathematics at Brigham Young University in 1958.

After graduating from Brigham Young University, Maureen departed for the Swiss-Austrian Mission on 8 December 1958. The mission proved to be a growing experience for Maureen. When she returned home, she pursued her education further by receiving her Masters Degree in English in 1966 and her PhD in 1973 in Comparative Literature. Both degrees were earned at the University of Utah. She married, but later divorced Dale Beecher.

Maureen has published articles and books and lectured many times during her Academic career. She has also served as Managing Editor of Western Humanities Review from 1969-1972; Editor and senior research associate, History Division, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1972-1980; Associate Professor and Professor of English from 1981-1997; and Research Historian in the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute for Church History, Brigham Young University, 1981-1997. Furthermore, she has served on many professional organizations and participated in the community.

In addition to Maureen's accomplishments, she has also been one of the leading advocates for Mormon Women's Studies. Maureen has contributed much through her research and writings of Mormon Women.

Following her retirement from BYU, Maureen took a position with Global Forum, in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

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John Murphy
Curator - 20th Century Western & Mormon Manuscripts