Nancy Newlin Ashton 1917 - 2011 Lawrence
Nancy Newlin Ashton, 94, Lawrence, a founder of the Johnson County Library, died May 25, 2011 at Lawrence Memorial Hospital. Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m. on May 31st at the George Hamilton Combs Memorial Chapel of the Country Club Christian Church in Kansas City. Burial at the Lenexa Cemetery will be private. The family suggests contributions to the Johnson County Library Foundation, the University of Kansas Endowment Association, or to a charity of choice.
Mrs. Ashton was born on January 14, 1917, in Wichita, to Harvey E. and Elmina Stewart Newlin. She was a 1933 graduate of the Sunset Hill School. She attended Vassar College and graduated from the University of Kansas in 1937. At the University of Kansas, she was elected to the Phi Beta Kappa honor society and served as president of Pi Beta Phi sorority. She later served as a member of the sorority’s educational foundation, treasurer of its Mothers Club, donated The Ashton Room to the KU Chapter, and was honored in 2009 with its Diamond Arrow pin. She was also a member of the University’s Chancellor’s Club.
She lived in the Kansas City area for much of her life, where she co-founded the Johnson County Public Library, now the largest library system in Kansas, and later served on its Friends Committee. She also served as secretary and treasurer of the Junior League of Kansas City, and actively worked at its Thrift Shop and at the Florence Crittenton Home. She was a long-time docent at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, a member of the Lyric Opera Women’s Guild, served Meals-on-Wheels to elderly persons, and until age 90 read to elementary school students in an after-school program in Lawrence. She was a former member of Indian Hills Country Club, where she served as president of the women’s golf group. While living several years in Wickenburg, Arizona, she served as a member of the board of the Wickenburg Library and the Wickenburg Hospital Auxiliary.
Mrs. Ashton was married for 51 years to Scott C. Ashton, who predeceased her. Survivors include two daughters, Sidney A. Garrett, Lawrence, and Judith Ashton, Boston, Mass., two sons and their spouses, Donald B. and Annie Ashton, Austin, Texas and Stewart H. and Genevieve A. Ashton, Paris, France, and five grandchildren.
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