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Stephenson County Pure Milk Association Collection


Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Box 1

Box 2

Box 3

Box 4

Box 5

Box 6

Oversize Drawer 18

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Stephenson County Pure Milk Association Collection, 1928-1957 | Northern Illinois University

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Collection Overview

Title: Stephenson County Pure Milk Association Collection, 1928-1957

ID: RHC/RC/093

Extent: 3.5 Linear Feet

Date Acquired: 10/12/1979

Subjects: Dairying, Dairying, Cooperative, Freeport (Ill.), Midwest Dairymen's Company, Pure Milk Association, Stephenson County (Ill), Stephenson County Pure Milk Association

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The materials in the Stephenson County Pure Milk Association collection document the entire existence, 1928-1957, of a dairy cooperative based in Freeport, Illinois.  Included in the collection are articles of incorporation, by-laws, minutes, 1931-1953; correspondence, 1944-1958.  There are also legal contracts and membership agreements which span almost all the cooperative’s lifetime as a separate entity.  Business records, ledgers, annual reports, production records, marketing agreements are especially valuable from 1933 on and form an important part of the collection.  While the collection contains all known existing records of the Stephenson cooperative, records from the earliest years are sometimes sparse; minutes from 1928-1931 (and 1953-1957) are missing, and correspondence before 1944 is generally nonexistent.

Collection Historical Note

The Stephenson County Pure Milk Association of Freeport, Illinois, was incorporated according to state law on July 9, 1928.  Its purpose was similar to that of other dairy cooperatives founded in the 1920’s.  It aimed “to be a nonprofit cooperative agricultural association, without capital stocks, organized for the mutual help and benefit of its members ... .”

Designed mainly to market and sell dairy products, the Stephenson County Pure Milk Association (S.C.P.M.A.), met with Freeport dealers in the 1930’s to establish a base price for producers.  In 1935 the cooperative was reorganized on a capital-stock basis.  It joined the Illinois Milk Producers Association in 1937, and in 1942 it actively participated in new school milk programs for the city of Freeport. Various pricing systems and production plans existed during the cooperative’s history as it attempted to deal with the chronic problem of overproduction.  After World War II S.C.P.M.A. faced increasing competition from other milk producers; large companies such as Borden’s brought non-cooperative milk from outside the area into the Freeport area.

In 1949, S.C.P.M.A., along with many similar dairy organizations, favored a proposed Federal Milk Order.  In order to promote milk producers’ interests, it began to join with other cooperatives in legal activities, lobbying efforts, and advertising campaigns.

Because of geographic proximity, S.C.P.M.A. and Mid-West Dairymen’s Company of Rockford, Illinois, agreed in 1950 to form a market-wide pool.  Eventually joint efforts led to a merger of the two cooperatives.  Effective April 1, 1957, S.C.P.M.A. discontinued its separate corporate existence.  On that date its members joined Mid-West, which continued to represent the interests of former S.C.P.M.A. members.

Subject/Index Terms

Dairying, Cooperative
Freeport (Ill.)
Midwest Dairymen's Company
Pure Milk Association
Stephenson County (Ill)
Stephenson County Pure Milk Association

Administrative Information

Repository: Northern Illinois University

Access Restrictions: There are no restrictions on access to materials in the collection.

Use Restrictions: Property rights to the materials belong to Mid-West Dairymen’s Company; literary rights are dedicated to the public.

Acquisition Source: Mid-West Dairymen’s Company

Acquisition Method: On October 12, 1979, the Mid-West Dairymen’s Company donated the records of the Stephenson County Pure Milk Association to the Northern Illinois Regional History Center.  Stephenson had been a separate corporate entity until its merger with Mid-West on April 1, 1957.

Related Materials: Because of its merger with Mid-West in 1957, researchers using this collection should consult the Regional History Center’s Mid-West Dairymen’s Company Collection (RC 81).  Other related collections include the DeKalb Milk Consumers Association Records (RC 15), the Gurler Family Papers (RC 25), and the Pure Milk Association (RC 62).

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Box:

[Box 1],
[Box 2],
[Box 3],
[Box 4],
[Box 5],
[Box 6],
[Oversize Drawer 18],

Box 1
Folder 1: Articles of Incorporation, Amendments, 1928, 1936, 1947
Folder 2: By-Laws, 1936
Folder 3-5: Minutes, 1931-1953
Folder 6: Merger Resolution, 1957
Folder 7: Correspondence, general, 1946-1950

Browse by Box:

[Box 1],
[Box 2],
[Box 3],
[Box 4],
[Box 5],
[Box 6],
[Oversize Drawer 18],

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