Archive of correspondence, periodicals, newspaper clippings, manuscript records, and journals recording the career of a missionary and WCTU member.
Los Angeles and Tokyo: 1895-1956. Contains eighteen radio broadcast scripts (plus multiple corrected drafts), hundreds of newspaper clippings; two journals (1895 and ca. 1930s) recording educational strategies for Bible instruction, as well as WCTU finance and membership records; twenty-three published records of national and southern California WCTU meetings (1930-1947); a ten-page typewritten document, dated 1932, arguing against the repeal of the Eighteenth Amendment; and an additional scrapbook of hundreds of leaves of letters, clippings, and other records of Ranck’s work as the director of missions for the WCTU, including her involvement with Asian American WCTU members in the United States. Also, Ranck’s business cards listing her positions in the WCTU, citizenship documentation she carried while on mission trips, and copy of her obituary. Some fragile leaves of paper (leading to tears in a couple documents), occasional toning and foxing, and some staining from old paperclips (now removed). Mostly in very good collection documenting a leading WCTU member whose sixty-year career spanned the rise and fall of prohibition, both World Wars, and the period when the WCTU was the largest women’s organization in the United States. Housed in an archival box (18 x 14 x 3 ”). Item #17452
Anna M. Ranck, née Kammerer (1874 – 1956) was a missionary, educator, radio broadcaster, and a member of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union for over fifty years. She was the Director of Temperance and Missions for the National WCTU for ten years and held the title of Special Worker with Orientals for at least twenty years, during which she organized with Asian American members of the WCTU, supported Asian Americans displaced by Japanese internment, and held WCTU Interracial Friendship Meetings in efforts to integrate the ranks of the organization. Ranck was also the secretary of the WCTU Home for Women in Los Angeles and a lead overseer of the Iota WCTU, the young women’s branch of the organization.
Ranck’s career runs parallel to the period that the WCTU was at the height of its influence. During the early twentieth century, WCTU membership peaked at over 750,000 members, and it became the largest women’s organization in the United States. Ranck’s involvement with the organization began during her thirty-year tenure as a missionary in Japan and China. During the trip, Ranck founded the Tokyo Bible School, which became one of the largest Christian schools in the country. Ranck went on to manage a network of a dozen Bible schools. Ranck spoke both Chinese and Japanese, and she worked with a Japanese writer to compile an eleven-chapter textbook on the geography of the Bible. Several documents in this archive, including letters and reports written by Ranck, document her experiences Japan and China. A series of typewritten booklets in transliterated Japanese (with manuscript corrections in ink) seem to be drafts of portions of the textbook. More information upon request.