Saturday at the 25th Anniversary of Gig Harbor's Lighthouse, the current president of the Fortnightly Club stopped by to pick up their time capsule from 1989. The current president was visibly upset, and was explaining the difficulties that the club was going through at this time in their history.
The club was originally established in December 1907 as a social club with a focus on community service. They are the oldest active women's club on the Gig Harbor Peninsula.
However they have been forced, due to declining membership, to give up their affiliation with the Federation of Women's Clubs, as well as other relationships that they have enjoyed since their founding. At the present time, the club holds their meetings at the retirement community where the majority of their membership now resides.
Perhaps if more people were aware of the of the history of this club it would be possible to attract young more active members. I could, and will, list the influential community members who have been past members but more importantly is who will fill the shoes of those women?
- Mrs. Franklin Secor
- Miss Lucy Goodman
- Bessie Green
- Lenna Patrick
- Mrs. Alex Uddenberg
- Mrs. Ed Patrick
- Mrs. Ernest Magoon
- Dora McKee
- Elise Jacobs
- Amanda Carlson
- Mrs. Kenneth Forbush
- Mrs Donald Reardon
In 1962 they sold their club house which they had owned for 25 years for $6,500 and that property is currently owned and occupied by the Gig Harbor Yacht Club. They has received this property for the payment of the outstanding mortgage in 1937. However by 1962 they felt that the property and the upkeep expense put to better use for the community.
So what type of community service were these women involved in? They help families suffering from unforeseen economic crisis both in their own life but also worldwide crisis. They provided loans for students to continue their education beyond high school. They worked very hard on behalf of the community during both WWI and WWII. They present the then president of the Gig Harbor Library Board, Ruth Bogue, with a check for $3,000. Many of their contributions to the community were not made public.
You can read more about this value organization in previous blogs which have appeared on the Gig Harbor Harbor History Museum site http://harborhistorymuseum.blogspot.com/2012/10/the-fortnightly-club-oldest-club-in-gig.html.
I am trying to find out how you or your friends can contact the club directly to help save it. It has been such a valuable resource the the residents of this community in the past. With some new, younger members it will be able to continue to service the greater Gig Harbor community.
As soon as I can obtain additional information on how to contact the club I will post as a comment on this blog. Please check back for the information.