MSS SC 1646; MSS 1657; see also JK 8466. A22x; BX 8670.1. G17a 1981
Delila Richards (Dee) was born on November 4, 1908 in Utah to John C. Richards and Clara Bacon Richards. She attended Jordan High School and LDS Business College. She married Floyd A. Abbott on June 25, 1930. She was active in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Sainst and served in the Relief Society and Mutual Organization in Salt Lake City, Spokane, and Seattle. She was also active in Utah politics, serving for six years as Salt Lake County vice chairman and also serving as Supervisory Clerk of the Utah Senate for two terms. She was elected to the Utah State Legislature for the 1957 session. She also was a member of the Civil Rights Committee and Governor Clyde's Campaign Committee. In 1960 Delila was a delegate to the Republican National Convention in Chicago, as part of the Foreign Affairs Committee. In 1961 she was appointed a member of the National Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Service, a three-year term to represent women in the military. She wrote several books including Days of Our Fathers, Mystery of the Ancient Ones, and Women Legislators of Utah, 1896-1993. Delila and Floyd Abbott had one son, Richard Abbott. Delila died on December 1, 1998, in Salt Lake City, Utah after an illness.
The first collection (MSS SC 1646) is comprised of one folder, which contains photocopies of four newspaper articles dated 1954, 1957, 1960, and 1962. The 1954 article announces Abbott's election to be a new officer for the Salt Lake County Republicans. The 1957 article reviews Abbott's political career and announces her election to the Utah House of Representatives. The 1960 article announces her candidacy for the Republican nomination for state representative from District 18. The 1962 article announces that Abbott and Hazel Taggart Chase won designations as the primary candidates for the Republican nomination of the Salt Lake County recorder office. The second collection (MSS 1657) contains six folders of papers on Delila Abbott's career. The folders contain newspaper clippings, typed and handwritten correspondence, and pamphlets relating to her various political assignments, other Utah women politicians, and Delila’s personal life. Includes handwritten notes on history of women in Utah politics in preparation for her book Women Legislators of Utah, 1896-1993; the folders also include correspondences related to her research. One folder contains correspondence, lists, and notes pertaining to her role in referring women attorneys to be considered for the Utah State Supreme Court. The collection also includes pamphlets on the Book of Mormon, an autobiographical account of Abbott's life, a collection of unpublished “Stories and Such” by Abbott, and Abbott's writings on the ERA. Included is a typed draft of her book Women Legislators.