Albion Rotary Club, 1928
The Albion Rotary Club
By K.G. Cornell
The Albion Rotary Club is a unit of the world wide organization known as Rotary International and its primary aim as an institution in the local social order is to inspire and encourage Rotarians directly and all men indirectly to achieve the successful practice of its six objectives which are as follows:
To encourage and foster:
1)The ideal of Service as the basis of all worthy enterprise;
2)High ethical standards in business and professions
3)The application of the ideal of Service, by every Rotarian to his personal business and community life;
4)The development of acquaintances as an opportunity for Service;
5)The recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations and the dignifying by each Rotarian of his occupation as an opportunity to serve society;
6)The advancement of understanding, good-will and international peace through a world fellowship of business and professional men united in the ideal of Service.
The establishment of a Rotary Club in Albion occurred to Dr. Ara D. Sharp because he had an opportunity to observe the interest in crippled childrens work maintained by various Rotary club members throughout the state. One Rotarian, James A. Parkinson, Jr., of the Jackson Rotary Club, sought to impress Dr. Sharp with the reason for Rotarys interest in crippled children.
The subject of a Rotary Club in Albion was introduced at the meeting of the 35th District club executives in Battle Creek, in the fall of 1927. Dr. Horace Porter, of the Jackson Rotary Club, and secretary of the 35th District, was designated by Governor Fred Hill of Hastings, to act as his special representative to organize the club.
After considerable preliminary work on the part of Dr. Horace Porter, Dr. Harry Parks, and Charles White of Jackson Rotary Club, also Fed Sheriff and Fred Gage of the Battle Creek Rotary Club, a full quorum meeting was held at the Parker Inn, February 22, 1928, when a complete organization was set up.
The club held its first regular meeting on March 29, 1928, and two weeks later on April 12, a granting of charter meeting was held at the Parker Inn, when Governor Fred Hill fo the 35th Rotary District, presented the charter to the Albion Club, No. 2799, in the presence of 326 visiting Rotarians. Among the distinguished guests were five past district governors, High Van de Walker, Ypsilanti; Paul H. King, Detroit; Ray W. Davis, St. Joseph; Fred Sheriff; Fred W. Gage, both of Battle Creek.
The entire assemblage listened attentively to an eloquent address upon the accomplishment of Rotary by Hon. Frank T. Mulholland, of Toledo, Ohio, past president of Rotary International. The purpose of this meeting was especially significant to Mr. Mulholland, in that as a prominent alumnus of Albion College, he had much to do with the granting of the club charter.
Charter members of Albion Rotary Club are: Dr. Ara D. Sharp, Richard Baldwin, Donald Gilbert, Robert Williams, Bernard Woodruff, Rheinhold Schumacher, Norman Wiener, Albert Schumacher, Harold Baker, Leonard Cole, Frank Koth, Wilbert L. Neil, Elmer Stoddard, Bruse Guyselman, Percy Ganson, George Bohm, John Fisher, Walter Peabody, Walter Peak, Clare D. Henry, Carl Schumacher, Verl Koon, William Buck, Edward B. Sweeney, Harry B. Parker, George Schumacher.
Interest in the club and its function in the community has increased greatly since its organization, under the leader of its past presidents, George Schumacher, Reginald Smith, and the present incumbent, Ara D. Sharp. The membership of 50 men, has been carefully selected from citizens of Albion, each one successfully representing some business or profession.
The club has established a student loan fund which at present makes it possible for several young men to attend Albion College. The nation-wide interest in crippled children is being supported by Rotary and the Albion club is making its contribution. Boy Scout Troop, No. 59, is being sponsored and leadership furnished by the local club.
Regular noon-day meetings are held Thursdays at the Parker Inn and the programs are of such nature that Rotarians and the community are benefited. The present officers (1931-1932) are: president Ara D. Sharp; vice-president, William Harton; secretary-treasurer, King Cornell; directors, Elmer Stoddard, Wilbert Neil, Albert Schumacher, and Reginald Smith.
Source: Krenerick, Miriam. Albion’s Milestones and Memories. Albion, MI: Art Craft Press. 1932. 78-79