Clarke Historical Library
Central Michigan University

Finding aid for
Bernice M. Watson Papers

Finding aid created by
KYle Garver, Marian Matyn

Summary Information
Title: Bernice M. Watson Papers
Creator: Watson, Bernice M., 1901-
Inclusive dates: 1946-1965, and undated
Extent: .5 cubic foot (in 1 box)
The collection documents the activities and interests of Bernice Watson before, during, and after serving in the 64th Michigan Legislature, 1947-1948.

Call number: MSS.
Language: The material is in English
Repository: Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University
250 East Preston Street
Mount Pleasant, MI 48859
Phone: 989-774-3352
Fax: 989-774-2160

Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

Acc# 2545

Access Restrictions:

Bernice M. Watson Papers are open for research.


Copyright is unknown.

Preferred Citation:

Bernice M. Watson Papers, Folder # , Box #, Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University


Collection is organized alphabetically then chronologically.



Bernice M. Watson was born August 16, 1901 in Breckenridge, Michigan. She attended Central Michigan University and earned a B.A. with a life Certificate in teaching. Also, she attended graduate level courses at the University of Michigan, Michigan State University, and the Misner School of the Spoken Word, Omaha, Nebraska. She taught from 1922 until she retired in 1968.

Mrs. Watson was elected as state representative from Flint, Michigan, in 1947. At that time she was widowed with a four-year-old son, Ronald. While in the Legislature, she was a member of the Central Michigan College of Education, Social Aid and Welfare, and the Public Heath committees. She also served as Chair of the State Library Committee. In 1947 she represented the state of Michigan at the National Convention of Women Legislators. Mrs. Watson resigned in 1947. She returned to teaching for financial reasons.

Then, Mrs. Watson taught social studies at Whittier Junior High School Governor Kim Sigler appointed her to a state commission to study educational policy in Michigan schools. In 1955 Mrs. Watson was appointed to the Michigan White House Conference on Education and served on the Advisory Committee of the Michigan Council for Better Schools. She was also elected Chair of Region X of the Michigan Education Association in 1956.

On June 14, 1965 she received the Medal of Honor from the Freedom Foundation at Valley Forge which read as follows: "Long after this medal is laid away and the language of this citation is forgotten, the values of this teacher’s work in behalf of the American Way of Life will live for the future through the lives and actions of boys and girls grown taller and older." (This information is from the collection.)

Collection Scope and Content Note

The collection documents the activities and interests of Mrs. Watson before, during, and after serving in the 64th Michigan Legislature, 1947-1948.

Subject Terms

    • Watson, Bernice M., 1901-
    • Michigan. Legislature (64th : 1947)
    • Michigan. Legislature. House of Representatives.
    • Legislators--Michigan.
    • Education--Michigan.
    • Women in politics--Michigan.
    • Flint (Mich.)--Biography.
    Contents List
       Container / Location    Title
    Bernice M. Watson Papers. [series]:
    Box   1 F   1
    Biographical Materials, 1947-1948, 1965, undated
    Box   1 F   2
    Constituent Correspondence, Adult Education Postcards, 1947
    Box   1 F   3
    Constituent Correspondence, Telegrams, March-May 1947
    Box   1 F   4
    Constituent Correspondence, Telegrams, May 1947
    Box   1 F   5
    Constituent Correspondence, Telegrams, May-September 1947
    Box   1 F   6
    Correspondence, 1946-1947
    Box   1 F   7
    Correspondence, 1948
    Box   1 F   8
    Correspondence, 1949, 1951, 1956
    Box   1 F   9
    Hannah, John A., Speech on Conservation Education, 1949
    Box   1 F   10
    House Bill on Sabbatical Leave, 1947
    Box   1 F   11
    Invitations and Programs, 1947-1948, undated
    Box   1 F   12
    National Order of Women Legislators, Annual Meeting, 1948
    Box   1 F   13
    Office of Veteran's Affairs, Director's Report (Discussed in February 12, 1946 letter from Phillip C. Pack), 1946
    Box   1 F   14
    Perkins, John A. Article on Reorganizing Michigan Government (Typed, enclosed with a July 7, 1948 letter from Perkins) 1948
    Box   1 F   15
    Photographs, undated, circa 1947-1948
    Box   1 F   16
    Siger, Kim, Gubernatorial Inauguration, 1947
    Box   1 F   17
    Speeches, 1947-1948