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M-146: Lucile Ring Collection

DATE: ca. 1950 - 1989

CREATOR: Ring, Lucile Wiley. Saint Louis attorney. 

SCOPE: The Lucile Wiley Ring collection reflects the many aspects of St. Louis legal and developmental history in the 1950s, 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. In addition to these formal documents which connect directly with the professional life of Ms. Ring, there are several boxes which contain items owned by various clients and friends which fall outside of the four decades in which Ms. Ring practiced law in St. Louis.

The finding aid serves as a completed guide to the Ring Collection. However, the archivist has attempted to maintain the integrity of Ms. Ring's original file format. This being said, several series are placed in different boxes, allowing the researcher to fully comprehend the organization used by Ms. Ring and her office staff. In other words, series numbers do not necessarily correspond with box numbers.

The collection highlights several different subjects related to legal issues witnessed during the second have of the twentieth-century in St. Louis. There is substantial information on St. Louis Committee on Courts, which was a citizens court reform committee in St. Louis. The collection also contains records on the St. Louis Agency on Training and Employment (SLATE). There is also information of the Lawyer's Reference Service of the St. Louis Bar Association which provided inexpensive legal services to the poor and elderly. Likewise, this collection contains records of the Model City Agency which was in charge of developing and maintaining government housing projects in the city. In addition to these large and well-organized series, there are also financial records and other related legal material. As stated earlier, the collection contains several items which do not directly connect with the legal life of Ms. Ring. These records are contained in the "Client's Papers" section.

The collections are divided into 15 series, each of which contains material of common subject focus and/or provenance. The series are as follows:

Series 1 Committee on Courts

Series 1 represents the largest portion of the collection. This series is divided into 35 subseries. Subseries 1-Contracts, holds contract information with various private and professional organizations. Subseries 2-Corporation Forms, holds Federal, State, and City tax related items. Subseries 3-Correspondence, holds outgoing and incoming correspondence from 1972 to 1975. Subseries 4-Purchase Orders and Invoices, contains information from 1972 to 1973. Subseries 5-Tax Returns, holds tax related items between 1973 and 1975. Subseries 6-Witnesses, holds examples of witness letters and other related items. Subseries 7-Research and Resource Areas, holds reference material and resources. Subseries 8-Pamphlets and Studies, contains pamphlets and studies produced or used by the St. Louis Committee on Courts. Subseries 9-St. Louis, holds 19 miscellaneous items. Subseries 10-Citizen's File-Movement, contains citizen related issues. Subseries 11-Criminal Courts Committee Trial, contains studies and miscellaneous items. Subseries 12-Misc., contains miscellaneous items related to St. Louis Committee on Courts. Subseries 13-General Committee, holds minutes and agendas of the General Committee. Subseries 14-1973 Grant Application, holds information about the 1973 LEAA (Law Enforcement Assistance Administration) grant. Subseries 15-LEAA (Law Enforcement Assistance Administration), contains further information regarding LEAA grant funding. Subseries 16-Office Equipment Brochures, contains various materials regarding equipment used or marketed to the St. Louis Committee on Courts' office. Subseries 17-Accounting, holds financial related items. Subseries 18-Citizens Committees, holds reference material on Citizens Committees throughout the country. Subseries 19-Conciliation Court, holds memoranda, letters, forms, and other related information. Subseries 20-Consultants' Reports 3/1973, contains court studies and time sheets of office personnel. Subseries 21-Grand Jury Reports, holds Grand Jury reports for 1970, 1971, and 1973. Subseries 22-Formation, holds documentation related to the formation of the committee. Subseries 23-Pretrial Release Briefs, contains minutes, agendas, letters, notes, and material related to pretrial releases. Subseries 24-Night Prosecutor, holds information regarding the formation of a Night Prosecutor program for St. Louis. Subseries 25-Publicity Subcommittee, holds articles, minutes, agenda, notes, letters and press releases related to the subcommittee. Subseries 26-Court Improvement, contains information related to the improvement of the St. Louis court system. Subseries 27-Court Study Reports, includes various reports and studies related to court improvement. Subseries 28-Employees, contains St. Louis Committee on Courts employee records. Subseries 29-Executive Committee, holds records of the Executive Committee including minutes, agenda, and transcribed meeting conversations. Subseries 30-Financial Records, contains quarterly reports and forms from 1973 and 1974. Subseries 31-Misc., contains four additional miscellaneous items. Subseries 32-Pamphlet on Criminal Courts, holds items related to the committee's publication of "Criminal Courts and You," items include various printings and drafts. Subseries 33-Personnel File (Policy), holds items concerning personnel policy for employees of the committee. Subseries 34-Police, includes three items related to the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department. Subseries 35-Project Activities, holds 4 items related to bids, grants, and project activities.

Series 2 Client Papers

Series 2 is divided into 15 subseries. Subseries 1-Pericles Xerxes Rhodes Will, holds items related to Mr. Rhodes, including his will. Subseries 2-Lilian Craig, contains five folders containing to items related to Lilian Craig. Subseries 3-Mildred Trotter, contains 68 folders related to this Washington University anatomy instructor. Subseries 4-Edith B. Hill, contains information relating to Ms. Hill. Subseries 5-Hazel DePugh, holds Ms. DePugh items. Subseries 6-John S. McGauly, holds one folder of McGauly related items. Subseries 7-Lucile Ring Lease, contains the lease for Ms. Ring's apartment. Subseries 8-Anna (Terry) Binzel, contains items regarding Ms. Binzel. Subseries 9-Esther Vogel, holds 5 folders related to the Vogel estate. Subseries 10-Josephine Hayden/Bushea/Mann, includes 2 folders of related information. Subseries 11-Anna Hennerich, contains 6 folders of items related to Anna Hennerich and her family. Subseries 12-Grace Mathilda Siebelts, holds 4 items related to Ms. Siebelts' family. Subseries 13-Marjorie Mullins, 1 folder of Mullins related information. Subseries 14-Hagen, 1 folder containing Hagen's warranty deed. Subseries 15-Perkins, includes one folder containing the Perkins' warranty deed.

Series 3 Random

Series 3 consists of one subseries. Subseries 1-Random, contains personal, St. Louis Committee on Courts, and various other items which were filed into one folder by Ms. Ring in 15 folders.

Series 4 SLATE

Series 4 consists of 2 subseries. Subseries 1-Training and Employment, contains 87 folders containing information on the St. Louis Agency on Training and Employment (SLATE) and on Comprehensive Employment Training Services (CETA). Subseries 2-Housing, holds 11 folders related to housing problems and solutions in the city of St. Louis.

Series 5 Legal Aid

Series 5 consists of one subseries, and is divided into 25 folders. Subseries 1-Legal Aid Society, all 25 folders relate to the Legal Aid Society and Lawyer's Reference Service. A program headed by Lucile Ring before she became involved with St. Louis Committee on Courts. The program provided inexpensive legal services for lower income citizens.

Series 6 Financial Records and Misc.

Series 6 is divided into three subseries. Subseries 1-Criminal Courts and You Pamphlets, contains multiple copies and printings of the pamphlet published by the St. Louis Committee on Courts. Subseries 2-Misc., holds 29 folders of information on marriage and divorce, women issues, Bar related items, and various miscellaneous items which were placed together by Ms. Ring. Subseries 3-Financial, holds 13 folders containing bankbooks, receipts, and statements.

Series 7 Model City Agency

Series 7 is divided into two subseries. Subseries 1-Donald Bourgeois, holds correspondence made by Mr. Bourgeois between November 1966 and March 1969. Subseries 2-Model City Files, is divided into 47 folders. The subseries contains a wide range of programs initiated by the Model City Agency for use in St. Louis housing projects.

Series 8 Public Defender

Series 8 consists of one subseries which is divided into 25 folders. Subseries 1-Judicial Article 1974-1976 Legislation, consists of items related to the Judicial Article, including House Bills and newspaper clippings.

Series 9 Jury

Series 9 is divided into four subseries. Subseries 1-Booklets, contains one folder of pamphlets and booklets. Subseries 2-Reports and Studies, includes 7 folders holding reports and studies related to jury issues. Subseries 3-Petit Jury System, holds 5 folders containing items related to the petit jury system including reports and notes on the system. Subseries 4-Misc., contains four folders of various miscellaneous items related to the jury system in St. Louis, including jury instruction, the Sheriff jury room, and witnesses.

Series 10 Women in Law

Series 10 consists of one subseries. Subseries 1-Women, holds 35 folders of items related to women lawyers working in the St. Louis area as well as general women legal concerns.

Series 11 Medical Malpractice

Series 11 consists of one subseries. Subseries 1-Medical Malpractice, holds information on ten medical malpractice cases Ms. Ring participated in

Series 12 Bar Association

Series 12 is divided into three subseries. Subseries 1-Bar Committees, holds information on Bar Association committees and subcommittees. Subseries 2-Executive Committee (Ring VP), contains 27 folders of information regarding the Executive Committee in which Ms. Ring was the vice president. Subseries 3-Judiciary Reform, holds items related to the Subcommittee Crimes commission, including evaluation reports, budgets, note, agendas and recommendations, contained in 25 folders.

Series 13 Monographs

Series 13 is divided into three subseries. Subseries 1-Books Etc., contains 269 books, studies, pamphlets and other related published items. Subseries 2-US Appeals Court 8th Circuit, contains 24 folders of court findings. Subseries 3-Personal Books, contains 44 books owned by either Ms. Ring or Dr. Trotter.

Series 14 Oversized

Series 14 consists of one subseries. Subseries 1-Embossers Etc., contains various large items which were unable to be placed in individual folders, i.e. company embossers.

Series 15 Valla D. Abbington

Series 15 consists of one subseries. Subseries 1-Papers, includes 15 folders of items related to the life and career of Valla Abbington, a St. Louis community leader and activist.

EXTENT: 34 boxes 45 linear feet.

HISTORY & PROVENANCE: This collection was donated to the library in 1996. Lucile Ring was an attorney who practiced law in St. Louis from the 1950s to 1980s. After graduating from high school in Fullerton, Nebraska, Ms. Ring went on to graduate from the Nebraska State Teachers' College in Kearney, Nebraska. Ms. Ring won a scholarship to the Washington University School of Law in St. Louis, and upon graduating began work as a fraud investigator for the United States Army. Ring was eventually promoted to attorney advisor to the Chief of Finance for the United States Army.

In the St. Louis area, Ms. Ring held several jobs and was involved with a variety of organizations. She was the President of the Missouri Association of Women Lawyers as well as the President of the St. Louis Women's Law Society.

She also served as a staff law clerk for the Eighth Circuit US Court of Appeals before becoming Director of the St. Louis Committee on Courts, a community judicial reform organization. In addition, Ms. Ring was the Director of the Lawyer's Reference Service of the St. Louis Bar Association. The Lawyer's Reference Service provided legal aid to over 10,400 persons while she was director.

Ring was also the first women ever to be nominated for a Circuit Judgeship on the St. Louis Court of Appeals. After retiring, Ring moved to Washington where she still resides.

Mrs. Ring´s other notable accomplishments include her tireless work for Legal Reference Services and the Ask A Lawyer program on local radio station KMOX. Though these efforts Mrs. Ring helped to bring legal services to those who otherwise may not have had access. Futhermore in 1996 Mrs. Ring published Breaking the Barriers: The St. Louis Legacy of Women in Law 1869-1969.

ACCESS: This collection is available for on-site use only in the Rare Book and Manuscripts Reading Room. Some of the material in Special Collection M-146 may be photocopied, digitally scanned or photographed, subject to condition. For collections marked limited access, researchers are advised to contact the library at least three business days in advance of their visit to submit a request to view the physical material.

Copies of the finding aid are available for download.

M-146 Lucille W. Ring Collection (.rtf)

M-146 Lucille W. Ring Colleciton (.pdf)

Researchers are advised to call ahead concerning changes in hours due to University intersessions and holidays. The St. Louis Mercantile Library is located on levels one and two of the Thomas Jefferson Library building.

In observance of security procedures, certain services may not be available shortly before the daily closing time.

Preferred Citation: When citing the material from this collection, the preferred citation is: From the Special Collections of the St. Louis Mercantile Library at the University of Missouri – St. Louis.