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Scope and Content Note

Charter members of the Lakeland Chapter of NARFE

The National Association of Retired Federal Employees (NARFE) was founded in Washington, D.C. in 1921 by fourteen retired federal employees. Its purpose was to protect the retirement benefits of federal employees, retirees, and their survivors. In the nearly eighty years since its founding, NARFE has developed into a powerful advocate at the state and federal level on behalf of federal employees and retirees. It also serves as a clearinghouse for its members for information on such issues as retirement and health benefits, as well as providing a broad range of community based programs and services.

NARFE has more than 400,000 members nationwide, organized into 50 state federations and more than 1700 local chapters. The Lakeland chapter (chapter 194) is one of the 1700 plus local chapters. It was organized in 1953 by a group of retired federal workers, primarily retired postal employees, living in Lakeland.

The records of the Lakeland chapter of NARFE were donated to the Special Collections unit of the Lakeland Public Library by one of its former officers in two installments in 1990 and 1997. The records were in fair to good condition and in no particular order when received. The records document to a small degree the activities of the Lakeland chapter. Since officers changed annually and since there was no designated repository or keeper of the chapter's records, many of the records were lost or misplaced. This is particularly true of the earliest records of the organization. Though the local chapter was organized in 1953, there are virtually no records in the collection predating 1960.

The above photograph is of the charter members of the Lakeland Chapter of NARFE, 1957.

The records comprise 1.25 linear feet and, after processing, were organized into three series: Subject Files, Financial Records, and Minutes of Meetings.

Series I, Subject Files, 1953-1997, consists of the administrative files of the organization and includes the articles of incorporation and by-laws, annual convention programs of the state federation's annual meetings, membership, lists, newsletters, and a scrapbook.

Series II, Financial Records, 1960-1991, consists of materials documenting the financial activities of the Lakeland chapter. Included are check registers, ledgers, dues transmittal forms, and treasurer's reports.

Series III, Minutes of Meetings, 1960-1991, consists of the typed and handwritten minutes of the monthly and annual meetings of the Lakeland chapter of NARFE.