The Class of 1940 Newsletters

What is it?

This collection contains newsletters written for members of the class of 1940. The first edition, published in March 1944, includes a "roll call" of 23 households. The 1960 edition lists 49 households. The last edition, published in February 2002, lists 21 households.

Topics covered include where class members are living (including addresses); holidays; World War II; courtships and marriages; children and parenting; returning to campus for events like Woman's Day; Homecoming, and reunions; illnesses and deaths of both the classmates and their family members; domestic and foreign travel; military service; jobs and relocations; significant visitors; infirmity and aging; notable weather conditions; and grandchildren and other extended family.

Most of the editions were prepared around Christmas, with editions in January to reflect additional news, and sometimes another newsletter in the spring. All are typed, originally using stencils and, by 1978, duplicated on a copy machine. In the 1950s, the format solidified in an alphabetical listing of each person's news, almost always in that individual's own words. Some of the entries are very brief; others go on for a page or more. Those who sent their news in late are in an added "latecomers" section.

The editors created a strong social network with expectations for participation in the newsletter. In the earliest editions, classmates who did not contribute were referred to as "stinkers"; in later editions, the authors simply listed the people they didn't hear from, noting that non-participants would be removed from the mailing list after a period of time. From many of the entries, it is evident that many class members, particularly those in and around Bozeman, socialized in person frequently.

Along with the newsletter, there are a few letters from the Alumni Association about reunions and one group photograph.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Class of 1940 Newsletters, Montana State University (MSU) Library, Bozeman, MT, [Item permalink or DOI]

Copyright Notice

Whenever possible, the Montana State University Library provides information about copyright in our digital collections records. We often do not own the rights in materials, and as such do not grant permissions for their use. Permissions and fees may be required from the individual copyright holder for uses beyond what is allowed based on U.S. Copyright Law (

Please attempt to determine if an item is protected by copyright and follow any copyright or use restrictions when applicable. Written permission from the copyright holder is required for reproduction of protected items beyond what is allowed by fair use or other exemptions. These materials may be used for personal use, research, teaching (including distribution to classes), or any "fair use" as defined by U.S. copyright laws.

For more information please contact Archives and Special Collections at the Montana State University Library or Leila Sterman, Scholarly Communication Librarian.


Illustrated Icon of two speech bubbles

Ask a question


Illustrated icon of a building

Reserve a Table


Illustrated icon of a calendar

Meet with a Librarian


Illustrated icon of two pieces of paper next to each other

Request Copies


Illustrated icon of a coin going into a piggy bank

Contribute funds