Iowa Women's Archives
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, Iowa



PAPERS, 1977-1997
14.7 linear feet


Iowa Women's Archives
100 Main Library
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, Iowa 52242

Phone: 319-335-5068
Fax: 319-335-5900
E-mail the Iowa Women's Archives

Please cite materials from this collection as follows:
Maggie Tinsman Papers, Iowa Women's Archives, University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City, Iowa.


Collection Overview

The papers (donor no. 476) were donated by Maggie Tinsman in 1997.
The papers are open for research.
Copyright held by the donor has not been transferred to The University of Iowa.
In Box 6.
Processed by:
Mira Dougherty-Johnson, 2000 and Lisa Mott, 2003. [TinsmanMaggie.doc]


Margaret Bruce Neir, the daughter of Francis E. and Elizabeth Lourie Neir, was born on July 14, 1936, in Moline, Illinois. She attended Moline public schools and then earned her B.A. from the University of Colorado, Boulder, in 1958. At college, she was a member of the Phi Beta Kappa, Pi Gamma Mu, and Mortar Board. Following her graduation, Margaret Neir lived in Salt Lake City, Utah, and worked as an airline steward for four months until her engagement, when company rules required her to quit. On February 21, 1959, she married Robert Hovey Tinsman, Jr.

The Tinsmans, known to everyone as Maggie and Hovey, began their life together in eastern Iowa, in the area known as the Quad Cities. Hovey Tinsman, trained as a chemical engineer, founded the Twin-State Engineering and Chemical Company. Maggie Tinsman’s primary role in the early years of her marriage was that of wife and mother. The couple had three children, Hovey III, Heidi, and Bruce. Though Maggie Tinsman did not work outside the home, she became very involved in volunteering at the schools and in such areas as juvenile probation.

In 1974, Maggie Tinsman earned a Master of Arts degree in social work from the University of Iowa. Her thesis was entitled The Changing Role of the Middle Class Volunteer. She began doing more community service, working for the next three years with the Children and Youth Project, a division of the Scott County Department of Health. The majority of her work was related closely with social service agencies and nursing and hospital services. She also worked with United Way, and she originated the Women’s Community Leadership Institute Project, which trained women as potential board members for government agencies. In 1979, Maggie Tinsman was named Iowa Social Worker of the Year.

In addition to her interest in social work, Maggie Tinsman was also active in politics. A loyal Republican, Maggie Tinsman acted as precinct Committee Person in Bettendorf, Iowa, as well as a delegate to several county and state conventions. In 1978, she was appointed to fill an unexpired term on the Scott County Board of Supervisors and was elected that same year to a four-year term. She kept her seat for more than ten years, relinquishing it only when she became a State Senator in 1989.

As a County Supervisor, Maggie Tinsman was involved in several organizations of county officials. These included the Iowa Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, the National Association of Counties, Women Officials in the National Association of Counties, and the Iowa State Association of Counties. In 1983, the German Marshall Plan, a project spearheaded by Maggie Tinsman, was selected by the Reagan administration as the United States county government representative to the German-American Federalism Symposium.

As a State Senator, Maggie Tinsman has served on committees dealing with education, human resources, appropriations, the judiciary system, health and human rights, and local government. She has also been an active leader in Medicaid and welfare reform. In 1996, Maggie Tinsman, a pro-choice Republican, who labeled herself a “fiscal conservative and a social centrist,” lost a bid for a seat in the United States Senate.

(Biographical data taken chiefly from Maggie Tinsman’s resume dated 8/97 and from “Margaret Neir Tinsman.” Baraks, Gloria et al. Profiles in Leadership: Dynamic Men and Women of the Quad Cities. Rock Island, Illinois: Quest Publishing, 1981. 220-225.)

Scope and Content Note

The Maggie Tinsman papers date from 1977-1997 and measure 14.7 linear feet. The papers are arranged in five series: Biographical Information, Scott County Board of Supervisors, Organizations of County Officials, Iowa General Assembly, and Artifacts. The collection focuses on the activities of a regional woman politician of the late twentieth century and her interest in social welfare. The majority of the collection consists of topical files relating to Tinsman’s career as a Scott County Supervisor, 1978-1989.

The Biographical information (1979-1997) series consists of resumes, newspaper clippings, political campaign brochures, and personal letters of recommendation.

The Scott County Board of Supervisors (1978-1993) series consists primarily of topical files relating to Maggie Tinsman’s position as County Supervisor. Also included in this series are several plans and reports produced and/or used by the Scott County Board of Supervisors.

The Organizations of County Officials (1977-1988) series consists of three subseries: the Iowa Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations ( Iowa ACIR), the Iowa State Association of Counties (ISAC), and the National Association of Counties (NACO). The Iowa ACIR subseries is made up of topical files and reports issued by Iowa ACIR. The ISAC subseries include chronological files, topical files, Board of Directors’ agendas, and manuals created by ISAC. The NACO subseries includes chronological files, general information on the organization, and a series of printed works entitled Local Elected Officials Handbook Series. This subseries also includes the records of Women Officials in the National Association of Counties (WON). The WON materials consist of chronological files, general information and newsletters.

The Iowa General Assembly (1990) series consists of the original results of a survey sent out by State Senator Maggie Tinsman in February 1990. The ten-question survey was designed to elicit residents’ feeling on many budget-related issues.

The Artifacts (c. 1989) series includes two items: a political campaign pin which reads, “Maggie Tinsman Republican,” and a poster which reads “Elect Maggie Tinsman Iowa Senate.” The poster is housed in the map case.

Maggie Tinsman’s thesis for her Master of Arts degree in social work from the University of Iowa is entitled The Changing Role of the Middle Class Volunteer. It has been separately catalogued and is shelved in the Iowa Women's Archives printed works collection.

Box List

Box 1                          
  Biographical information, 1979-1997            
    General (newspaper clippings, excerpts, campaign brochures)
Letters of recommendation (2 folders)
Resumes (2 folders)
Social work
  Scott County Board of Supervisors, 1978-1993          
    Topical files
      Administration and Evaluation, 1978-1988 (2 folders)
Agenda--First Meeting (1/20/78)
Ambulance Service
Bill of Rights for the chronically mentally ill, mentally retarded and developmentally disabled. (2 folders)
Box 2                          
      Bi-State Metropolitan Planning Commission
        Budget Plans and Minutes, 1986-1989
Finance and Personnel Committee, 1981-1983
Great River Bend Area Agency on Aging (2 folders)
Joint Purchasing Organization, 1985-1986
Project Review Committee, 1983-1984
Box 3                          
        Transportation Policy Committee, 1983-1987
      Blue Grass Road
Board Organization
Board of Social Welfare, 1984
Budget Indicator Reports
Cemetery (Oakdale Cemetery Company)
Charter Home Rule
City Assessor, 1981-1984 (2 folders)
City/County Assessor Merger
Cleaveland Associates Ltd.
Community Health Care, 1979-1983 (2 folders)
Box 4                          
      Community Mental Health Center, 1978-1983 (2 folders)
Comparable Worth
Compensation Board (2 folders)
Incoming, 1986-1988
Outgoing, 1986-1988
      County Assessor , 1982-1984 (2 folders)
Box 5                          
      County Attorney , 1982-1984
County Engineer, 1983-1984
County Finance Bill
Countywide Addressing System
Courts and Computer Equipment
Criminal Justice Davenport Chamber of Commerce
        Legislative Committee, 1984-1989 (4 folders)
Local Government Council
      Davenport Community School District Long Range Planning Advisory Committee
Davenport Special Charter
Department of Human Services, 1983-1987
Deputy Sheriff
Detox Center
Developmental Disabilities Forum ( University of Iowa)
Duck Creek Flood Plain
Economic Development (2 folders)
Emergency Medical Services
Employee Programs
Equal Employment Opportunity
Box 6                          
      Fair Labor Standards Act
Federal Budget Balancing, 1985
Finance Award
Funeral Services and Burials
General Relief, 1978-1983 (2 folders)
General Relief Court Suit, 1978
General Relief Guidelines
General Services
German-American Symposium, 1983 (3 folders) [includes photographs]
Box 7                          
      German Marshall Fund, 1984
Goal Setting Session, 1982
Goals, 1980-1988 (4 folders)
Governor’s Budget, 1987
Great River Bend Services, Inc.
Handicapped Development Center
Health Insurance
Health Policy in Iowa (regarding the elderly)
Hills and Dales (child development center in Davenport, Iowa)
Home Rule
Homeless/Mentally Ill
Human Resources Appeals
Humane Society
Hyvue (home for mentally retarded adults in Davenport)
Box 8                          
      Illinois/Iowa Construction Labor Management Council
Iowa Citizen Assembly, 1987
Iowa Caucus, 1988
Iowa Homecoming, 1986
Iowa Quad Cities Night, 1989
Industrial Park
International Trade
Intergovernmental Cooperation
Issues in Iowa
Jail Advisory Committee
Jail Bond Referendum
Jail Health Care
Box 9                          
      Jail Inspection
Jail Lawsuit
Jail overcrowding/alternatives to incarceration Jail Project, 1980
Jail Remodeling, 1988
Job Descriptions
Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA)
Junior League Training
Juvenile Detention Center (2 folders)
Box 10                          
      Juvenile Detention Center Staffing
Juvenile Diversion Program
Land Preservation and Development Policy
Land Use
Leadership of Iowa
Legislation, 1980-1983 (2 folders)
Box 11                          
      Legislation, 1984-1988 (4 folders)
Legislation, 1986 (Freezing local property taxes)
Legislation, 1986 (Restructuring and downsizing Iowa State
Legislative Forum, 1985, 1986 (2 folders)
Lieutenant Governor’s Iowa & the Future Conference, 1984
Local Option Taxes
Box 12                          
      Long Term Care (2 folders)
Lost Grove Lake
Maintenance Facility
Maternity Leave
Medic Emergency Medical Services
Meetings with F. Glen Erickson, 1985-1988
Mental Health/Mental Retardation
Advisory Committee
Box 13                          
      Mental Health/Mental Retardation
        Case Management
National Technical Assistance Center for Mental Health Planning
Prevention Planning
      Mercy Hospital Psychiatric Costs
Microwave Feasibility Report
Mississippi Bend Area Education Agency
Mississippi Queen Program, “Business Women and the Political World: New Partnerships,” 1986
Mississippi Valley Fair
Nashville Draft House (license revocation), 1982
News Releases
Box 14                          
      911 Dispatching
Oath of Offices
Older Women’s League
Open Meetings Law
People to People Iowa State Leadership Initiative
Personnel, Employee Handbook
Pineknoll Health Care Facility (psychiatric care for adults in Davenport, Iowa)
Plainview Lawsuit ( Scott County v. Plainview), 1984
Pleasant Valley Economy Task Force
Pleasant Valley Theater Group
Pre-Trial Release
Practicum students, 1979-1988 (4 folders)
Public Health Subcommittee, Perinatal Care
Box 15                          
      Public Relations/Communications Task Force
Quad-City Council of Chambers of Commerce, Labor-Management
ymposium, 1987
Quad-City Development Group, 1987 (4 folders)
Quad-City Development Group, 1988 (3 folders)
Box 16                          
      Quad-City Development Group, 1988 (cont.)
Quad-City Regional Economic Finance Authority
Quad-City Times Roundtable
Quad Cities Annual Women’s Conference, 1985-1989
Railroad Taxes
Recognition Ceremony – County Employees, 1987
Rejuvenate Davenport
Republican Party
Revenue Sharing (3 folders)
Revitalize Iowa’s Sound Economy (RISE) Risk Management Advisory Committee
Rudy’s Softball Field
Sears Building Renovation
Secondary Roads Department, Class B Road System
Secondary Roads Department, Financial Data
Box 17                          
      Seventh Judicial District Department of Correctional Services
School of Social Work, University of Iowa
Scott County Employee Newsletter, 1986-1988
Scott County Regional Industrial Park (SCRIP) lots
Scott County Sesquicentennial
Serious Traffic Offender Patrol Program (STOP)
Sheriff’s Office
Snow Removal
Social Security
Social Welfare
Speeches, 1978-1987 (3 folders)
State Papers, Indigent Patient Care
Box 18                          
      Stanley Foundation Conference, 1984
Strategic Planning ( University of Iowa and the Quad-City Times)
Subdivision Ordinance, 1979
Target Issues, 1987-1989
Tax Assessments, 1982-1983, 1985 (2 folders)
Tax Deed Properties/Auction
Telephone Trunk Study
Title XX Advisory Committee (3 folders)
Box 19                          
T.R.A.I.N. (Teach, Rehabilitate, Aid Iowa’s Neglected) Community Action
Transportation, Blue Ribbon Task Force
Unions (2 folders)
United Neighbors, Incorporated
United Way
United Way, Government Relations (2 folders)
Box 20                          
      United Way, Planning (3 folders)
U.S. West Direct Iowa Quad Cities Task Force
Valley Shelter Homes, Inc.
Venture Capital Fund
Visiting Nurse and Homemaker Service, Inc.
Box 21                          
      Washington Economic Development Meetings, 1987
Welfare Reform
Window Replacement
Women Active in Scott County
Women and the Future: A Celebration of Aging (conference proceedings, September 16, 1985)
“Women as Candidates in the 1984 Congressional Elections: A Post-election Survey of Five Congressional Districts, November 1984” (commissioned by the National Women’s Political Caucus)
Women Elected Officials
Women, Issues
Women, National Seminars
Women, National Women’s Education Fund
Women, Resources for Women and Public Leaders
Women Supervisors in Iowa
    Plans and Reports            
      A Selected Annotated Bibliography on Black Families , 1978
Proposed Policy on the Administrative Structure/Board of Supervisor’s Objectives for the Administration , 1979
Development Plan, Scott County, Iowa, December 1980 (Bi-State Metropolitan Planning Commission)
Box 22                          
      The Region: Information on Scott and Muscatine Counties, Iowa; Henry, Mercer and Rock Island Counties, Illinois, 1981 (Bi-State Metropolitan Planning Commission)
Scott County Courthouse, Scott County, Iowa: Final Report , 1987
Scott County, Iowa 1988-1989 Budget Plan , 1988
Box 23                          
      Information and Referral of the Quad Cities : Handbook for Board Members , 1993 (2 folders)
  Organizations of County Officials, 1977-1988    
    Iowa Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations ( Iowa ACIR)  
      Background Information
Correspondence, Incoming
Correspondence, Outgoing
County Government Study, 1985
County Reform, Indianapolis Information
Box 24                          
      County Reform Public Hearings
Current Issues
Future Issues, 1981-1984 (2 folders)
Government Services & Finance Task Force, 1982-1984 (2 folders)
Iowa’s Infrastructure Executive Summary, 1986
Legislation, 1983-1984 (2 folders)
Legislative Council Meeting, 1984
Legislative Priorities, 1984, 1986 (2 folders)
Box 25                          

Liquor Regulation Testimony, 1983
Local Government Investment Pools
Media clippings
Meetings, 1982-1983
Reports, 1983-1986 (2 folders)
Speeches, 1982-1984
Tort Liability
United States ACIR
United States ACIR meeting, Phoenix, AZ, 1984

Box 26                          
    Iowa State Association of Counties (ISAC)  
      General, 1979-1981, 1983, 1985 (5 folders) School of Instruction, 1980-1981, 1983-1987 (9 folders)  
Box 27                          
      School of Instruction , 1988 (2 folders)
Department of Social Services, 1980-1981
Supervisors and Engineers, 1988
Supervisors’ Winter Meeting, 1988
Board of Directors Meeting Agendas, 1984-1985 (3 folders)
Box 28                          
      Board of Directors Meeting Agendas, 1986 (2 folders)
District VI meetings, 1982-1988 (3 folders)
Executive Board meetings, 1982-1988
Box 29                          
      Health and Welfare Committee, 1981-1988 (7 folders)
Large County Boards of Supervisors
Box 30                          
      Women Supervisors of Iowa
A Manual for County Supervisors of Iowa, 1978
Manual of Instruction for Newly Elected County Officials, undated
    National Association of Counties (NACO)  
      Health & Education Steering Committee, 1981, 1983-1988 (7 folders)
Health Care Cost Containment Committee, 1984-1985
Rural Health Subcommittee, 1984
Employment Policy and Human Resources Conference, 1984
Box 31                          
      Primary Care, Prevention and Mental Health Subcommittee, 1985-1986 (2 folders)
Mental Health Advisory Panel Meeting, 1987
Mental Health/Substance Abuse/Disabilities Subcommittee,1987-1988
Application Procedure and Letters for NACO Board of Directors, 1986
Board of Directors’ Meetings, 1984-1986 (4 folders)
Iowa Congressional Meeting, 1986
Legislative Conferences, 1980-1983 (2 folders)
Box 32                          
      Legislative Conferences, 1984-1987 (4 folders)
Annual Conferences, 1982-1988 (7 folders)
Box 33                          
      Correspondence, 1984-1986
Directory, staff and presidents, 1987, 1989
Local Elected Officials Handbook Series, 1977 (9 booklets)
    Women Officials in the National Association of Counties (WON)
      Purposes and Bylaws, 1981-1985
General, 1982-1988 (5 folders)
Finances, 1984-1985
Membership, 1984-1985
Box 34                          
      Correspondence, 1984-1985
Conferences, 1985 (2 folders)
Legislative Conference, 1986
Board Appointment Nominations, 1986
Meetings, 1986-1987
Newsletters, 1985-1987
  Iowa General Assembly        
    1990 Iowa Legislature Survey results (2 folders)
Box 35                          
    1990 Iowa Legislature Survey results (5 folders)
    Political campaign pin ["Maggie Tinsman Republican"], c.1989
Political campaign poster ["Elect Maggie Tinsman Iowa Senate"], c.1989 [shelved in map case]

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