Cerro Gordo County Iowa
Part of the IaGenWeb Project



Globe Gazette
Mason City, Cerro Gordo County, Iowa
November 10, 2012
by Kristin Buehner

Tuesday program to mark centennial

MASON CITY — The Mason City Woman’s Club will celebrate its 100th anniversary with a program at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 13, at the Knights of Columbus Hall, 551 S. Taft Ave.

David Vikturek, chief executive officer of the Mason City Foundation, will present a program about the boyhood of Meredith Willson, author-composer of “The Music Man” musical.

Cake and other refreshments will be served.

Past presidents of the Mason City Woman’s Club are encouraged to attend. They will be recognized for their service.

Memberships to the Woman’s Club will be available for $15 at the door.

For further information, contact Marian at 641-421-8531 or Mary at 641-420-1553.

~ ~ ~ ~

Club looks for new ways to serve

MASON CITY — Members of the Mason City Woman’s Club are proud of their 100-year heritage and seeking new ways to continue to serve the community.

Organizations such as Crisis Intervention Service, Trinity House of Hope for homeless women and children and Hawkeye Harvest Food Bank are among the causes they support.

“We welcome new members,” said Secretary/Historian Mary Katherine Madison. “We learn through our educational programs and our fellowship with other members.”

Current president is Marian Urbatch.

The Woman’s Club holds five programs a year.

“The Mason City Woman’s Club is very proud of its past 100 years and is looking forward to the future and its place in Mason City history,” said Madison.

The Mason City Woman’s Club will celebrate 100 years of civic work and support of issues affecting women at an anniversary celebration at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 13,

“Over these 100 years, the Mason City Woman’s Club has been instrumental in helping to shape Mason City and its future,” Club Secretary/Historian Mary Katherine Madison said.

Founded in 1912, the Woman’s Club grew out of the Mason City Civic League, organized in 1911 “to improve home life and make a greater Mason City,” according to early records.

Fanny Harding Bailey was the president.

When the organization became the Woman’s Club in 1912, May McNider — Mrs. Charles H. McNider — was elected president. The club had 192 members.

The early Woman’s Club lent its support to organizations such as the Red Cross, the Humane Society and the Tuberculosis Association.

In the very early years, a portion of the membership dues was sent to support the suffrage movement, Madison said.

The club also provided funding to help establish a city restroom, a city laboratory, a city milk ordinance and to hire a public school nurse.

Woman’s Club members’ interest in nature and conservation was demonstrated by surveys they conducted of trees and their support for roadside planting efforts, their care of city parks and the conservation of wildlife, Madison said.

In the early 1920s, the club donated $500 to assist in the purchase of land for Clear Lake State Park on Clear Lake’s South Shore. The purchase was completed in January 1925, according to Clear Lake historian H Duesenberg.

At that time, May McNider was a member of the Iowa Board of Conservation, Duesenberg said.

Mason City skating rinks and lighting at the rinks were made possible in part because of assistance from the Mason City Woman’s Club, Madison said.

During the Depression, the Woman’s Club established a hospital bed fund to meet the urgent need for maternity hospital care for the women of Mason City. Women who could not afford maternity care were provided with care through this funding.

The Woman’s Club also provided funding to establish the Charles H. MacNider Art Museum, which opened in Mason City in January 1966.

Club members raised funds for their various projects by presenting plays, holding rummage sales and, in more recent years, organizing an annual Tour of Homes in September and style shows and luncheons in April.

Until recently, the Woman’s Club held annual book sales in various locations around Mason City. For many years, proceeds from the book sales went to the Mason City Public Library, but more recently were donated to Crisis Intervention Service and Trinity House of Hope for homeless women.

Transcription by Sharon R. Becker, January of 2014



  • Return to History Index Page

  • Return to Cerro Gordo Home Page


    © Copyright 1996-
    Cerro Gordo Co. IAGenWeb Project
    All rights Reserved.