The Stamford Woman’s Club was started by 28 civic-minded women in 1905. They met in the lecture rooms of the Universalist Church, The Methodist Church and in members’ homes. They met in the lecture rooms of the Universalist Church, the Methodist Church and in members’ homes. Many meetings were held in the home of Mrs. Edward L. Scofield. Membership increased to 44 in the first year. The club was Federated (joined the General Federation of Women’s Clubs – GFWC) in 1906 and Incorporated in 1911. The original dues were $1.00 per year.
A clubhouse was certainly in the thoughts of early members. As early as 1909 a fund was started with the fees donated from the lectures of Dr. William J. Long, a Stamford writer.
In 1919 the Club voted unanimously to purchase the home of Mrs. King at 45 Prospect Street. At one time there were 700 members and many departments, including: Junior, Drama, Civics, Conservation, Garden, Literature and Music. At one point there were 15 drama groups – one even performed at the Waldorf Astoria. A drama library was started in 1921 and collected over 3,000 books. A Woman’s Exchange was organized as an outlet for women’ss work: cooking, repairing, knitting, etc. Orders were taken for all kinds of goods – parties were a specialty.
1927 was a very special year in our history. The SWC sponsored a public lecture by America’s greatest living poet, Carl Sandburg, who spoke at length about Abraham Lincoln, sang various American folksongs and opined that what real Americanism means is not so cut and dried a matter.
The clubhouse was sold in 1979. Since that date the Club has met at the First United Methodist Church. Special interest groups have include American Home, Bridge, Community Concerns, Drama, Garden Department, International Affairs, Public Affairs, Special Events, Student Scholarship, Trips and Tours and Veterans Affairs.
In recent years, the Stamford Woman’s Club has contributed nearly $1 million to the Stamford Community in the form of scholarships to high school students and UCONN undergraduates, donations to the food bank, historical society, library, Hospice, Girl Scouts and many other charities. As our work continues in our second century we will strive to continue sharing our talents and generosity with our city, state and country. We know that by working together, we make a difference.