Recently Dr. Kathy Aiken, professor emerita, Dulce Kersting-Lark, head of Special Collections and Archives, and Haley Noble, head of the Latah County Historical Society came together at the U of I Women’s Center to talk about women’s groups that had and still exist in and around Moscow. In discussing the U of I Faculty Wives Club, Aiken commented these groups, no matter their focus, offered something the joining women were interested in. Whether it was socializing, working on projects together, or education.
The Just-Us Club was for U of I law students’ wives. These women desired to further their own education, support their husbands, socialize, and do charitable works. Their 1954-1978 scrapbook is part of the University of Idaho’s Special Collections and Archives holdings. Founded in the spring of 1954, Mrs. Joan Anderson wanted to get the married women acquainted while their husbands were studying law. They met twice a month and Caroline Folz, the Law Librarian, was chosen as the club’s sponsor.
“The big purpose of Just Us,” said Mrs. Coralie Weston, president, “is to keep its members alert to current affairs and trends in the world today.”
Gatherings included bridge parties, speaking events, law demonstrations, and a dance-dinner in the spring. They also held baked food sales.
In the fall of 1959, the Argonaut reported that Zola Stellman, wife of Lewiston attorney, Elbert Stellman, gave a talk to the Club on the “Duties and Obligations of a Law Wife.”
Over time, the club expanded its membership to include women law students and faculty wives. A welcoming letter to new members in 1971 read in part:
“Welcome to the University of Idaho Just-Us Club, an organization of law widows…er, wives, College of Law coeds, and law faculty wives. Our club is designed to save the sanity of you who are about to lose your husbands to the mistress of the law each day, every night, most weekends, and winter vacations.”
Meetings continued to be held twice a month.
“Every other Tuesday is our night out, so tell the husband and/or daddy to plan on holding down the fort while you play.”
Gem of the Mountains 1961.
Just-Us Club scrapbook MG 580. University of Idaho Library Special Collections and Archives.
“Wives Start ‘Just Us Club’,” The Argonaut 6 Nov. 1959.