20th Century Club, 1898
The Twentieth Century Club
By Mrs. Perry Robertson
In 1898 at the suggestion of Mrs. Charles Knickerbocker, now Mrs. John Frear, Binghamton, N.Y. , a Chautauqua reading circle was formed, which soon developed and was organized the same year into the Twentieth Century Club, Miss Mary Norris, (now deceased), was the first president.
The eight chartered members are: Mrs. Eliza Austin, Mrs. Jennie Griffin, Mrs. Flora Knickerbocker Frear, Mrs. Mary Ludlow, Miss Mary C. Norris, Mrs. Mary Pratt, Mrs. Febe Comstock and Mrs. Martha Whitcomb. Mrs. Pratt and Mrs. Frear and the only surviving charter members.
The club seeks to promote the moral, intellectual and social welfare of its members and of the community. The regular meetings are alternate Tuesdays. The club flower is the carnation; the club colors are pink, white and green; the club motto, “Non sibi sed omnibus,” (Not for ourselves, but for others).
The membership is limited to 50; the club dues are $3.00 active, $4 associate members. The present membership is 37, of which 33 are active and 4 associate. Mrs. Flora Knickerbocker Frear is an honorary life members.
The Twentieth Century Clubs affiliations are as follows: General Federation of Womens Clubs, 1913; Michigan State Federation of Womens Clubs, 1902; Calhoun County Federation of Womens Clubs, 1922 (charter member); Albion Federation of Womens Clubs, 1915 (charter member).
The first thought presented in Albion regarding the possibility of a Carnegie Library is credited to Mrs. Emily Ross who read a club paper on this subject in 1913. This idea expanded and became a community enterprise and resulted in the building of the City Library.
The Twentieth Century Club was instrumental in getting the City ordinance for a curfew passed in 1915, Mrs. Lewis Frye was president at the time. The ordinance remained in force a number of years.
The club has two loan scholarships, totaling $75, which are loaned to worthy Albion College students.
The club has brought before the people of Albion many speakers of note. This year those who have spoken are Dr. Royal G. Hall, Dr. H.M. Battenhouse, Dr. W.W. Whitehouse, Miss Charlotte H. Swanson, of Albion College, and Miss Roberta Foote, the school nurse, has given a health talk. Prof. L.U. Rowlands pupils from Albion College School of Music presented a Christmas Musicale. The club works actively with the Albion Federation along all lines of civic improvement. Many honors have come to the club through various members serving as officers and committee chairmen in the state, district, county and city federations.
As special club projects, by using a $100 Liberty Bond bought at the time of the World War., the club equipped and still helps maintain a room in the Sheldon Memorial Hospital, recently conducted classes in Americaniztion work among foreigners three evenings a week, special help given to the Starr Commonwealth boys and a bureau to assist working women is maintained by one of the club members. The club also has helped to send worthy music students to Interlochen for three summers, gives each year annual programs of entertainment at the County Home and also the County Hospital.
The Twentieth Century Club and the Three-Quarters Century Club had a joint program in February, 1932, commemorating the George Washington Bicentennial. Each club planted and dedicated memorial Washington trees at the Dalrymple School, a tree being given for the purpose to each club by Mrs. W.A. Krenerick.
The officers for 1931-1932 are: president, Mrs. Lua Miller; vice-president, Mrs. Oscar Cooper; recording secretary, Mrs. R.P. Powers; corresponding secretary, Mrs. Richard Wheeler; treasurer, Mrs. Frank Koth; critic, Mrs. Early Young; parliamentary censor, Mrs. G.E. Arnold
The past presidents of the club are:
Miss Mary C. Norris (1899-1900)
Mrs. Jennie McNeal (1900-1901)
Mrs. Perry Robertson (1901-1902)
Mrs. Maud Harroun (1902-1904)
Mrs. Pheobe Anthony (1904-1905)
Mrs. Foote, Mrs. Griffin (1905-1906)
Mrs. Maud Harroun (1906-1907)
Mrs. John Frear (1907-1908)
Mrs. Robert Glascoff (1908-1910)
Mrs. Charles Ashdown (1910-1911)
Mrs. Fred King (1911-1913)
Mrs. Lewis Frye (1913-1915)
Mrs. K.D. Davis (1915-1917)
Mrs. W.H. Foster (1917-1918)
Mrs. Ira Denton (1918-1920)
Mrs. Elmer Jacobs (1920-1921)
Mrs. Claud Shattuck (1921-1923)
Mrs. Vivian C. Serio (1923-1925)
Mrs. Fred McAuliffe (1926-1927)
Mrs. Earl Stark (1927-1929)
Mrs. S.P. Selby (1929-1931)
Source: Krenerick, Miriam. Albion’s Milestones and Memories. Albion, MI: Art Craft Press. 1932. 115-116