The Kiwanis Club of Schenectady
Chartered in 1919 as a service organization, the Kiwanis Club of Schenectady has survived for nearly 100 years. The Club's contributions to Schenectady have been significant.
Publication: Schenectady Gazette;
Date: May 22, 1919
"Kiwanis Club Holds Its First Luncheon"
"Fifty-two members of the newly organized Kiwanis Club attended the first luncheon yesterday in the Mohawk hotel and listened to an address by Rev. T. F. Joseph, a prominent member of the Jewish Welfare Board.
At each meeting day of the Kiwanis Club, a prize is to be given to a member. The prize is to be donated by a Schenectady Business man. Today the prize was a pair of shoes donated by John W. Mills of the Walkover Boot Shop, this city. Chester L. Rankin was the winner.
President McNab read a communication from the Schenectady Council of the Boy Scouts of America inviting Kiwanis members to attend a Scout demonstration at the state armory Saturday night. The invitation was received and greatly appreciated by the members many of whom will doubtless attend the function. By virtue of his office as head of the Kiwanis Club, Assemblyman McNab was appointed a member of the Schenectady Council of Boy Scouts of America.
Kiwanis members who own automobiles have been requested to loan their automobiles on Memorial day to convey Civil War Veterans in the parade and to points to which they may desire to go to perform Memorial day functions.
The spirit of co-operation that characterizes organizations in Schenectady was emphasized when a communication from the Rotary Club was read by President McNab that extended best wishes to the new organization and hopes for its future success.
The Kiwanis Club will hold a weekly luncheon on Wednesday in the Mohawk Hotel and arrangements have been made for larger accommodations as a larger number is expected at future luncheons."
Kiwanis membership has risen as well as diminished over the years due to changing demographics and business growth in the community. Beginning in the early 1900s, Kiwanis was instrumental in the start of Sunnyview Hospital by rasing $50,000 within a short time period going door to door with the Schenectady Fire Department. Dr. A.R. Warner, who was the Schenectady Kiwanis President in 1929, led the Club's effort to achieve success in opening the hospital. The concerns then were to fight the crippling disease of polio ravaging the community children. Evolving from the hospital's beginnings, Sunnyview Rehabilitation Hospital diversified its treatment to much more than the founders initial vision. The Kiwanis Club of Schenectady is very proud of these roots.
Kiwanis President of 1947, Everett S. Lee, a General Electric employee, was a dedicated Kiwanian who chronicled Kiwanis activities in a book "The story of Kiwanis Club of Schenectady". It was published in 1964 and currently exists as a reference book at the Schenectady County Public Library. Everett Lee, more well known as Sam Lee provided important dedication to the continuation of such a long rich history of our youth service organization. We thank him for his efforts.
Since the early beginnings of the Schenectady Kiwanis Club, local children programs, primarily from under served socioeconomic groups, have benefited from our fund rasing effort.