Community Chest of Terre Haute
Dates:  1919-1983
Accession Number:  891215
Donor:  John G. Ragle
Description:  Eight document cases


The Welfare League of Terre Haute was organized on September 29, 1919 by representatives from a number of social welfare agencies in the community.  Its objectives were to improve the operations of individual agencies by promoting cooperation between them and eliminating duplicative efforts.  Fund raising for member agencies became centralized through the Welfare League and one unified appeal for financial support replaced the smaller, individual campaigns. 

The Community Chest of Terre Haute may be viewed as the outgrowth of the earlier Welfare League.  It was established as a non-profit organization in April 1942.  The Articles of Incorporation describe the organization's main purpose as promoting "cooperation between social agencies in Terre Haute, Indiana, and the citizens of the community in the interest of financial support of such agencies and the effective planning and execution of the social service program of this community." 

Over the years, the Chest has provided administrative and financial support to a variety of social welfare agencies within the community.  In September 1957, the United Appeal, Inc. was formed to raise funds for agencies in the Community Chest as well as for the local chapter of the American Red Cross.  With the establishment of this new organization (which was broader in scope), the Chest's new responsibilities gradually diminished.  In an effort to centralize all fund raising and administrative functions, the United Appeal assumed campaign responsibilities, reviewed budgets, and disbursed funds to individual agencies.  In 1959, the Community Chest's board was reduced to three members whose responsibilities were limited to the administration of trusts and bequests. 

The United Appeal has undergone two name changes. In April 1959, the name United Fund was adopted, but today the organization is known as the United Way.  It continues to coordinate fund raising and administrative activities for social service agencies in the Wabash Valley.

Content and Scope of Collection

This collection contains administrative and financial records of the Community Chest of Terre Haute from its inception to the 1980s.  Also included are the original minutes of the Welfare League of Terre Haute and the early minute books of the United Appeal/United Fund which reveal their relationship with the Community Chest. 

The collection is organized roughly in chronological order by type of record.  There has been an attempt to maintain the order and organization of the Community Chest files as they were received.  Consequently, correspondence files contain financial information and financial records contain correspondence regarding budgetary matters. 

Minutes chronicle Community Chest activities as well as list board members and membership agencies.  Tax records give a record of Chest employees over a period of time.  Of special note is material on the Phillis Wheatley Association.  This was a member organization of the Welfare League which was established in 1923 to meet the social needs of young black women in the community. 

For collections of related material, see: United Way: Audit Records of Agencies, Accession Number 840906.

Document Case 1



The Welfare League of Terre Haute: Minutes (bound volume)

Sept. 29,1919-
Dec. 31, 1927

Folder 1

Phillis Wheatley Association: By-Laws; Articles of Incorporation


Folder 2

Community Chest of Terre Haute:



Articles & Certificate of Incorporation

April 1942



Articles & Certificate of Amendment

April 1959



Typescript copies of news articles
re: reorganization of Community Chest


Revised by-laws




List of Board of Directors


Folder 3

Community Chest: Constitution and By-Laws; Constitution Committee Records


Folder 4

Community Chest: Agreements with Indiana War Fund, Inc.



Community Chest: Minutes (bound volume)

March 2, 1942-
Nov. 25, 1946


Community Chest: Minutes (bound volume)

Feb. 6, 1947
Feb. 23, 1949

Document Case 2  
Loose Community Chest: Minutes (bound volume) Feb 28, 1949-
Dec. 31, 1952
Folder 1 Community Chest: Minutes Book
Jan. 1953-Dec. 1956
Folder 2 Community Chest: Minutes Book
Jan. 1953-Dec. 1956
Folder 3 Community Chest: Minutes Book
Jan. 1953-Dec. 1956
Folder 4 Community Chest: Minutes Book
Jan. 1953-Dec. 1956
Folder 5 Community Chest: Minutes Book
Jan. 31, 1957-March 31, 1959
Folder 6 Community Chest: Minutes Book
Jan. 31, 1957-March 31, 1959
Folder 7 Community Chest: Minutes Book
Jan. 31, 1957-March 31, 1959
Folder 8 Community Chest: Minutes 1959-1963
Folder 9 Community Chest: Minutes 1965-1980
Folder 10 Correspondence 1942-1953
Folder 11 Correspondence 1958-1959
Folder 12 Correspondence 1960-1963
Folder 13 Correspondence 1964-1966
Document Case 3  
Folder 1 Correspondence 1967-1969
Folder 2 Correspondence 1970
Folder 3 Correspondence 1971
Folder 4 Correspondence 1972-1973
Folder 5 Correspondence 1974-1975
Folder 6 Correspondence 1976
Folder 7 Correspondence 1977
Folder 8 Correspondence 1978
Folder 9 Correspondence Feb. 1979-
June 1979
Folder 10 Correspondence July 1979-
Dec. 1979
Folder 11 Correspondence 1980
Document Case 4  
Folder 1 Katherine Hamilton file re: Community Chest loan 1969-1970
Folder 2 Legal Action file re: suit against Community Chest by Wabash Valley Central Labor Council 1978
Legal Notices 1959
Folder 3 Budget Committee 1942-1949
Folder 4 Standards and Admissions Committee 1957
  Statements of Financial Condition 1957-
Folder 5 Auditors Financial Statements/Annual Reports 1942-1947
Folder 6 Auditors Financial Statements/ Annual Reports 1948-1949
Folder 7 Auditors Financial Statements/ Annual Reports 1950-1953
Folder 8 Auditors Financial Statements/ Annual Reports 1954-1957
Folder 9 Auditors Financial Statements/ Annual Reports 1969-1974
Folder 10 Annual Reports 1976-1977
Agency Allotment Summaries 1939-1952
Document Case 5  
Folder 1 General Ledger Book; includes log of assets and liabilities 1956-1959
Folder 2 General Ledger Book; includes log of income and expenses 1956-1959
Loose General Ledger Book; includes log of receipts and disbursements 1958-1960

Ledger Book; includes the following sections:

Journal, Bank Account, Interest Income, Other Income, Contribution Expense, Other Expense, Loans Receivable, Loans Payable, Investments (other)

Envelope 1 Bank Pass Books 1954-1959
Folder 3 Financial Records 1949-1963
Folder 4 Financial Records 1964-1965
Document Case 6
Folder 1 Financial Records 1966-1970
Folder 2 Financial Records 1973
Folder 3 Financial Records 1974
Folder 4 Financial Records 1975
Folder 5 Financial Records 1976
Folder 6 Financial Records 1977
Folder 7 Financial Records 1978
Folder 8 Financial Records 1979
Folder 9 Financial Records 1980
Folder 10 Financial Records 1981
Document Case 7
Folder 1 Financial Records 1982
Folder 2 Financial Records 1983
Folder 3 Tax Records; includes social security information and tax schedules/forms 1942-1954
Folder 4 Tax Records; includes Employee's Withholding Exemption Certificates and tax returns 1943-1958
Folder 5 Tax Exemption Applications 1943-1958
Folder 6 Tax Records; includes Employee's Quarterly Withholding Receipts, tax returns, and exemption affadavits 1942-1965
Folder 7 Tax Records; includes tax returns 1977-1980
Folder 8 Treasury Bills 1959-1977
Folder 9 Newspaper clippings 1959
Miscellaneous memorabilia n.d.
Document Case 8
Folder 1 United Appeal: General information 1957-1959
Minutes; financial report 1958-1959
Folder 2 United Appeal/United Fund:
Minute Book, June 13, 1958-Dec. 31, 1959
Folder 3 United Fund Minutes 1960
Folder 4 Correspondence 1969-1970
Folder 5 United Way Office File re: Community Chest 1966-1978
Loose United Way President Ed Howard's notebook on the Community Chest 1942-1977