Records of the York Female Friendly Society

Scope and Content

The collection contains papers from the society's inception until its dissolution, with a small amount up until 1984. It includes registers of members and society rules as well as finances including details about pensions, sick pay, funds and investments. It also contains miscellaneous documents, many of which concern amendments to society rules as well as correspondence, newspaper cuttings and reports. It also contains a publication by co-founder Catherine Cappe.

Administrative / Biographical History

York Female Friendly Society was a mutual group for women that provided financial assistance during times of ill health or difficult circumstance.

The Society was founded in 1788 by a group of York women led by philanthropists Faith Gray and Catherine Cappe. The original purpose was to provide a safety net for girls offering sick benefits, pensions and grants for medical care for those leaving York's Grey Coat and Spinning Schools, which they also ran. It continued to accept members up until the introduction of the NHS in 1948. Membership could be extended to other working women through a rule allowing limited nomination by honorary members.

In 1976, the Society was dissolved and the funds divided among the remaining members. The remaining members of the Society continued to meet annually until 1984. Moyra F Johnson served as secretary of the Society from the early 1970s.

The Society's office was situated in St William's College, York.

Access Information

Material is available subject to the usual terms and conditions of access to Archives and Local History collections.

Other Finding Aids

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Archivist's Note

Compiled by Francesca Taylor, Community Collections Assistant, September 2014.

Conditions Governing Use

Images are supplied for private research only at the Archivist's discretion. Please note that material may be unsuitable for copying on conservation grounds. Researchers who wish to publish material must seek copyright permission from the copyright owner.

Geographical Names