Rotary Club 32
St Joseph MO, USA
The History of Rotary Club 32
1950 to 1959
|Preface||Club 32 beginnings|
|Club 32 First Members||1911 - 1919||1920-1929|
|1930 - 1939||1940 - 1949||1950 - 1959|
|1960 - 1969||1970 - 1979||1980 - 1986|
|1987 - 2002||2002-2003|
1949 – 1950
Carl P. Schuchardt President 1949-1950
During this year our club sent three crippled children to the session of “Physically Handicapped Rotary Club Camp” in Kansas City, Missouri.
At the start of this Rotary year it was decided to send $2.00 per capita to the “Paul Harris Foundation Fund”. This was to be sent from our club funds. At the close of our year we found that our club fund was in excess of our original planning and we sent an additional donation of $2.00 per capita, making our donation for the year to the Paul Harris Foundation Fund, $4.00 for each member.
Annual Christmas Project this year was the adoption of five very needy and worthy families. They were supplied with clothing, food and a three months milk supply.
Some Fireside Meetings were held this year and were greatly enjoyed by the members attending.
$572.53 was spent this year to send boys to our regular Boys’ Camps, Camp Geiger and Camp Marvin Hillyard.
District Conference was held in Excelsior Springs, Missouri. Mr. and Mrs. Carl Schuchardt and Mr. and Mrs. Frank Cooper attended this meeting.
Club membership this year was 124.
Stanley I. Dale was elected Mayor of St. Joseph, becoming the youngest Mayor in St. Joseph history.
Kenneth Piepergerdes President 1950-1951
March 13, 1951: This was a lucky day for our club although it was the 13th. It was our “One Hundred Percent Attendance Day”. Membership of the club at this time was 126. There were 114 present and the twelve who were not present made up their attendance, so we rang the bell for the first “Perfect Attendance Day”. President Kenneth really pushed for this day and was proud of his 126 members.
April 24, 1951: Rotaryanns were guests at the luncheon on this day. A very entertaining program, “The Music Maids” was presented. Six charming young artists presented a program which delighted the audience. Tragedy struck soon after this meeting. These six young artists who entertained us met with an accident soon after their program. This accident was at the Wabash Crossing near Stanberry, Missouri, and four of the young girls were killed.
May 1951: Leland Becraft, Secretary, attended the International Rotary Convention in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
St. Joseph moved from 8th to 7th place in the United States as a livestock market.
The 22nd Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, limiting presidents to two terms, was adopted February 26, 1951.
Frank S. Records
Mr. Records, as president of the club, held several conferences with the South Side Rotary Club, and a definite agreement was reached between the two clubs as to boundary lines. Prior to this agreement, both clubs would solicit members from the territory of the other.
This was the first year of operation under Rotary International Rules which assigned to each member of the Board of Directors a Lane of Service.
Club membership this year was 129.
King George of England died February 6, 1952. He was succeeded by his daughter, Elizabeth, on February 8, 1952.
February 10, 1953: 194th District Conference was held in St. Joseph, Missouri. District Governor A.J. McNally was present and introduced Tomotake Teshima of Japan. Mr. Teshima was a member of International Board of Directors of Rotary. Our club was presented with a Rotary Japanese banner as a token from the president of the Tokyo Club.
At the suggestion of the Rotary Club, other civic clubs joined in a get-out-the-vote campaign. The clubs sponsored many newspaper ads.
March 10, 1952: The following interesting statistics were presented at our meeting today to show us the work of Rotary:
The International Student Exchange Committee, at its recent meeting in Chicago, awarded Rotary Foundation Fellowships for this school year to 97 outstanding graduates from 31 countries. The approximate cost was $250,000. Since this program was started in 1947, as a memorial to Paul Harris, Rotary Foundation Fellowships have been awarded to 489 young people living in 55 countries. Total grants amount to more than $1,250,000.
November 14, 1952: Statistics show 7,637 Rotary Clubs and 362,000 Rotarians.
March 1953: Mayor Reuter of Berlin, Germany sent a cable to Rotary International U.S.A. asking for help for refugees in Berlin. He asked for clothing, money and food. Rotary International launched a nation-wide appeal for a food and clothing drive for Mayor Reuter.
A very damaging flood of the Missouri River in the spring of 1952. The river crested April 23, 1952 at 27.2 feet. The course of the river was changed by the flood - - a new channel was made by Army Engineers and Browning Lake resulted.
1953 was the driest year in the history of the St. Joseph Weather Bureau.
1953 – 1954
Leland E. Becraft President 1953-1954
May 4, 1954: President Leland E. Becraft exhibited a Rotary flag which had been presented to Louis Trachsel by the Rotary Club of Switzerland upon his visit there last year, for transmittal to the St. Joseph Rotary Club.
In the May 2, 1954 edition of the News-Press, the following news item of our club appeared:
Of the 41 past presidents of the Rotary Club, the city’s oldest
service club which has existed since 1911, 18 are still members
of the club. Several of the former presidents have moved away
from the city or are no longer members of the club.
Following are the names of the 18 with the date of their service
June 28, 1954: Seventy-two
youngsters joined in a great, big, tremendous “THANK YOU” to all
Rotarians for a happy and enjoyable outing at the Rotary Boys’ Camps.
Seventeen more youngsters are to go to Scout Camp next month.
June 28, 1954: Seventy-two youngsters joined in a great, big, tremendous “THANK YOU” to all Rotarians for a happy and enjoyable outing at the Rotary Boys’ Camps. Seventeen more youngsters are to go to Scout Camp next month.
1954: A river terminal or wharf was constructed by the Dannen Mills which would be available to all local industry.
The 75th Anniversary of the St. Joseph News-Press was celebrated.
segregation was abolished.
1954 – 1955
Dr. Ernest E. Wadlow President 1954-1955
The biggest single event of this year was the meeting on February 22, which was the Golden Anniversary Kick-Off Meeting, with the premier showing of the anniversary film, “The Great Adventure”, and the presentation of our traveling trophy to the Brookfield Rotary Club. Attendance for this luncheon was 250, with delegations from 15 other clubs.
Sixty-seven boys were down at Camp Marvin Hillyard the week of June 15, 1955, and another group will be sent next month. It is impossible to measure or estimate the good that our camp subscriptions are doing in this work.
The annual Birthday Party for this year was held March 15, 1954 with a luncheon meeting. Eighty-seven ladies were present, a record number of ladies present at any Rotary Club meeting in St. Joseph.
During the year, July 1954 to July 1955, quite a change was made in the club membership. Twelve Rotarians were lost by resignation and transfer to other localities. Four of our members died during this year. To offset these membership losses, 52 new members were taken into the club, with a net gain of 37, or 29.6%. President Wadlow gave much credit for this gain in membership to Russell Peck and his classification committee. Membership at the year’s end was 162 active members plus seven honorary members, which is an all-time high for our club. This was the largest percent increase since the club was organized and the largest percent increase of any club in the district.
Four club members whom we lost by death were: William “Van” Murchie, Clarence E. Riepen, Ransom N. Ridge and W. Byron Woodman. Ransom Ridge served thirty-two years as treasurer of the club.
* * * * * * * *
We find that through these years (1911 – 1955) six members of our local club have been honored by being chosen President of National Associations. We are indeed proud of these fellow Rotarians and they are listed with the year in which they were elected National President:
William A. Bodenhausen President of National Retail Clothiers Association, 1918; 1st President of St. Joseph Rotary Club.
William L. Goetz President of the National Associated Producers of Cereal Beverages. Elected in 1928.
Harry C. Herschman President of the American Warehousemen’s Association. Elected in 1929. He was 18th President of the St. Joseph Rotary Club.
Sam Hotchkiss President of National Association of Builders Exchange. Elected in 1921. He was the 23rd President of St. Joseph Rotary Club.
Dr. Walter F. Kimball President of the American Optometric Association. Elected in 1925. He was the 16th President of St. Joseph Rotary Club.
B. W. Murphy He was elected President of the National Society of American Florists and Ornamental Horticulturists. Elected in 1935.
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It is likely impossible to relate the course of passing events over a given period of time, be it long or short, from a vantage point of complete detachment. No doubt some element of personal bias has unwittingly intruded. In any case, this recording of the history of the St. Joseph Rotary Club No. 32, from the year of 1911 to the present year of 1955 is aimed to be factual and illuminative of the joys and the trials of this era. With this in mind, let us continue with Rotary into its exciting, unknown, but undoubtedly brilliant future.
John Crowe – Historian – 1955
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1955 – 1956
Barent Springsted, Jr. President 1955-1956
Rotary activities for the year started with the 50th Anniversary Rotary International Convention which was held in Chicago in June 1955. There were over 16,000 Rotarians and Rotary Anns who attended this occasion.
The outstanding occasion at our club during the year was our meeting of October 11th when A.Z. Baker, President of Rotary International, was our guest and speaker. This was the second time in the history of our Club when we were fortunate enough to be host to a President of Rotary International. President Baker had just returned from an extensive trip to Europe and Africa and had a very interesting message for us. Mrs. Baker was also with us and was entertained by the officer’s wives at the St. Joseph Country Club at a noon luncheon.
Our District Governor, William Brandenberg of the Maryville, Missouri club expressed the desire that we promote inter-club activities in the new 194th District. Under the direction of Clare Woods, Chairman of our inter-club activities, the first annual District Golf Tournament and Barbecue was held at the St. Joseph Country Club on July 7, 1955, in co-sponsorship with the South Side Rotary Club. This occasion was well attended and represented by Rotary Club of Northwest Missouri.
The St. Joseph Rotary Club presented a traveling trophy to the Rotary Clubs of the 194th District to be used as a permanent trophy. This cup traveled extensively during the year and finally ended up in the possession of the Liberty, Missouri Club on July 1, 1956. The cup was inscribed with the Liberty, Missouri Club’s name as the first winner, and the cup was then started on another year’s travel July 1, 1956.
Our club celebrated its 45th annual birthday party on November 8, 1955 with a luncheon for the Rotarians and their Anns.
On November 26 and 27, the 194th District Conference was held at Maryville, Missouri. One of the outstanding features of this Conference was the playlet, “Accepted With Regret”, which was put on as a joint venture of the St. Joseph Rotary Club and the St. Joseph South Side Rotary Club. Later this playlet was repeated as a program for the St. Joseph Rotary Club.
The Youth Committee of our Vocational Service Program again conducted two very important projects. The members of the club contributed generously the this Boys’ Camp Fund and many boys attended the Boys’ Camp under the direction of Dr. I.H. Baird. Bob Glenn again supervised the Sunshine Picnic held at Lake Contrary which was a wonderful occasion for the orphan groups of St. Joseph.
The International Service Committee under the direction of Dr. Thompson E. Potter cooperated with the Dublin Club of Ireland on a stamp project. A large quantity of cancelled stamps were collected by the members of our club and these stamps were forwarded to the Ireland Club.
The club was unfortunate during the year in losing some of its very fine officers. C. Clare Woods, our 2nd Vice President, moved to New Orleans about the 1st of October, and Warren G. Pryor, our 1st Vice President, was transferred to St. Louis as of January 1, 1956. The club was fortunate in filling these vacancies with Lester Miller receiving the appointment as 1st Vice President, and Sidmen M. Lewis as 2nd Vice President.
During the year, two of the club’s members passed away. Walter L. Eshelman, classification of “Musical Instruments, Retail” and president of our club in 1918 – 1919, died May 18, 1956; and Dr. Eugene A. Miller, who was an honorary members due to a long illness, died December 16, 1955.
In June 1956, Rotary Ann Lenora Crowe, wife of John Crowe, classification “Consulting Engineer, Fire Arms”, completed a history of the St. Joseph Rotary Club No. 32, a copy of which was presented to all members of the club. This was the final project and completed the work of our Golden Anniversary Committee. This history represented many hours of work by Mrs. Crowe and Bernice Johnson, our Executive Secretary, and was well received by the members of the Club.
This was an active and enjoyable year for Club No. 32 and one which we will all long remember.
In February, a letter was sent to all members advising of an increase in dues to the amount of $27.00 per quarter, or $108.00 per year. This increase was due to an increase of luncheons from $1.25 to $1.50 per plate.
The club entertained Miss Margaret Berry, Missouri Maid of Milk, at the June 19th luncheon and meeting.
The year 1955 – 1956 ended with a membership of 160 members.
During 1955, 3,220,000 were marketed at the St. Joseph Stock Yards.
Construction of the new home of the American Angus Breeders’ Association and that of the new Sears Roebuck & Co. buildings were started.
Anchor Serum Company purchased the Noyes Hospital Building on Frederick Avenue for expansion purposes.
March 1956: Repudiation of two county judges for misconduct in office.
April 1956: An annexation suit to enlarge the city was filed.
1956 – 1957
The 2nd annual District Golf Tournament was held at the Moila Golf and Country Club on 28th and Union Streets, in August. It was well represented by most of the clubs in Northwest Missouri.
The Club Assembly was held August 20th at the Beacon Restaurant on the Belt Highway; every committee was represented by the chairman and/or co-chairman.
The District Conference was held in Chillicothe, Missouri, on November 3rd and 4th. The St. Joseph Rotary Club won the prize – a portable rostrum – for the club with the largest representation present.
A letter of congratulations was received from Rotary International regarding the Club Activities.
Two hundred new Rotary song books were purchased from Rotary International.
The District Club Assembly was held in Cameron, Missouri, April 22, 1957.
Orestes Mitchell, Jr., president of the St. Joseph Rotary Club in 1952 – 1953 was elected Governor of Rotary International District 194.
Two members were lost by death; Joseph V. Morehead, October 6, 1956; and William G. Kopecky, November 16, 1956.
On March 22nd, Clarance A. Speer, “Accountant-Auditor” received a letter of appreciation from Major General Lionel C. McGarr, Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, thanking the club for the hospitality shown to Col. Clapper when he was guest speaker at the luncheon meeting, and expressed their desire to participate in future programs if needed.
Fred Clouse and Irvin Sexton were appointed as delegates of the St. Joseph Rotary Club to represent Family and Child Care and Recreation.
The club ended the year 1956 – 1957 with 159 members.
Drouth and cloud seeding was necessary to aid crop growth.
Catholic Diocese of St. Joseph merges with the Kansas City area.
Final phase of street lighting and paving completed.
Two major business fires during the early part of 1957 destroyed the Jerome Hotel causing the loss of one life, and Einbender’s Women’s Store.
Business firms expansions were highlighted by projects of the Dannen Milling Company, Seitz Packing Company, Southwestern Bell Telephone Company, and the St. Joseph Light and Power Company.
Banks continued toward better facilities; the Empire Trust
expanding east along Edmond Street. The
Tootle National Bank expansion included a Loan Department west on Francis
Street, with a Drive-In Department added to the rear of the bank with a
large lot for parking for bank business.
The Mechanics Bank announced plans for a new building at Fifth and
Edmond Streets. The Missouri Methodist Hospital enlarged its facilities by
acquisition of The Mercy Osteopathic Hospital.
1957 – 1958
My report for our Rotary year 1957 – 1958 will not be along any particular line but rather to record some of the events of the year which I hope may be of interest to the members.
New officers and directors were installed June 25, 1957. Beginning July 1, 1957, we became part of Rotary District No.
603. On July 2, 1957,
Governor Ed Wolters of Chillicothe, was present and installed Past
President Orestes Mitchell, Jr., as District Governor.
August 29, 1957, the Inter-Club Golf Tournament was held at Moila
Club, 51 played, 67 for dinner. Among
those receiving perfect attendance awards on September 3, 1957, were Dr.
Walter F. Kimball (our only charter member) 30 years perfect attendance,
and Harold Niedorp, 28 years.
The Birthday Party was changed from a noon luncheon to an evening party which was held October 19, 1957. Bea Johnson of Kansas City was the speaker. A total of 193 attended.
Saturday and Sunday, November 2 and 3, 1957 our club was host for
the District Conference. Our
first District Governor, Orestes Mitchell, Jr. and our first District
Conference since 1936. George
H. Watson was the General Chairman. The
speaker was Judge Sam Kessinger of New Jersey, a past District Governor
and on the editorial staff of The Rotarian.
Representative from the President of Rotary International was Mr.
Joseph A. Abey, editor of the Eagle-Times of Reading, Pa., and a member of
December 31, 1957, the annual Student Party was held. Eighty-four students from 29 colleges and universities were present. March 11, 1958, the annual Pinochle Tournament was held at Moila Club. We lost to the South Side Rotary Club. On June 17, 1958, our first Father and Son Day; the sons took over the running of the meeting and program.
Installation of new officers July 1, 1958.
George H. Watson, President.
Everything that was accomplished during the year was the result of the full support and cooperation of all the officers and members, for which I thank everyone. It was an outstanding honor and privilege for me to have had a small part therein.
Two members were lost through death; Albert G. Schaeffer, July 28, 1957, and Major Adam J. Wolf, January 1, 1958.
The club year ended with 163 members.
The Myrtle Miller School for children needing special educational attention and embracing the Mary U. Neipp School for crippled children has been described by educators as equal to the finest schools of this classification.
George Bode, Jr. willed $3,000,0000 to the City of St. Joseph.
Completion of the city’s long annexation program by which its limits were extended to double the area of the city with approximately 7,000 to 8,000 residences.
The settlement of the litigation over the $3,000,000 Bode Estate which was left to the citizens of the City of St. Joseph.
1958 – 1959
As president in 1958 – 1959, I have been asked to add another chapter to the History of this Rotary Club. This is not easy for me, because I find it extremely difficult to express the great personal satisfaction that was mine from working with the officers, directors, and membership as a whole, on the many activities and projects, sponsored by the club.
It was my hope that the membership would enjoy this year and work to create better fellowship and improve the club. I do believe that 1958 – 1959 was another good year for Rotary, with the membership practicing the motto of “Service Above Self”.
Our charter member, Dr. Walter Kimball, again headed the program committee and did an outstanding job of presenting interesting and entertaining programs, which were highlighted by an address by Senator Dearmont, president of the Missouri-Pacific Railroad. We were also fortunate to have Coe Pritchett (a past member of this club and Director of Rotary International) as a speaker.
A memorable event this year was a visit in St. Joseph by Pierre, a student from Paris, France, as a guest of the club for a week. During the week, Pierre visited Armour and Company as a guest of Harold Glass and stayed in the home of Dr. H. Ewing Wachter. Pierre also enjoyed his visits to the First National Bank, Beatrice Foods Company, the St. Joseph Museum and other points of interest. I feel sure that the club enjoyed having him as a guest.
It was again our privilege to sponsor the Boy Scout activities at the Myrtle Miller School, and our gratitude is extended to John Fenner, who devoted much of his time to this worthy project. I had the distinct pleasure of presenting the charter to the school and the troop, and I sincerely believe that every member of this club should make it a point to visit the school.
We, as a club, participated in several projects, that were worthy as well as enjoyable. The $1,741.85 paid to the Rotary Foundation made our club a 100% participant.
The Annual District Golf Tournament, sponsored by our club in August had 51 golfers, and/or duffers, and 63 for dinner. We again assisted in the annual Y.M.C.A. membership drive, had good representation at the District Conference at Trenton, Missouri. We donated $200.00 to the Myrtle Miller School, and sent a large number of boys to summer camp, and made the initial donation to the fund to rebuild the swimming pool at the Boy Scout Camp.
We were saddened by the untimely deaths of two of our fine members, Dr. T.H. Saferstein and Herbert H. Powell. We also lost one of our most loyal and hardworking members when Past President Leland E. Becraft, who had been secretary for many years, resigned, to accept a position in Rapid City, South Dakota.
The membership averaged 161 for the year. There were sixteen new members, and nine terminations, for a net gain of seven for the year.
Atchison, Kansas had a severe flash flood causing thousands of dollars in damages.
Pollution of the Missouri River continues to be important news. State and Federal agencies are following an unyielding program.
November 1958: Alaska Statehood ratified by Alaska voters.
Railroad cutbacks considered on discontinuance of trains hearings held in Maryville, St. Joseph, Missouri and Atchison, Kansas.
January 3, 1959: Alaska officially proclaimed a State of the Union.
Many areas approved consolidation of school districts, most issues of school bonds approved.
The annual tobacco auction at Weston, Missouri drew a record crowd and prices averaging $65.00 a hundred-weight.
Tornadoes May 10th, smashed two hangars and three planes at the Marysville, Kansas airport.
May 1959: A flash flood caused by torrential rains and the overflow of Blacksnake Creek at the northern end of St. Joseph caused wide-spread damage to the Chicago, Greatwestern Railroad tracks, yards and freight depot, and the Number 4 Green Hills Market, owned and operated by Rotarian Kenneth L. Johnson; and taking the life of one man who had been trapped on top of his car.