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Young Men's Christian Association of Greater Boston, West Roxbury/Roslindale Branch records

 Collection
Identifier: M062

Scope and Content Note

The records of YMCA of Greater Boston, West Roxbury-Roslindale Branch document the organization's administrative, religious, social, educational, and community activities. Some of these activities include the many adult informal education classes: square dancing, beginner swimming lessons, tennis lessons, and classes to improve one's bridge game. This collection also contains information on the clubs the branch offered such as the Y's Men's Club, the Senior Citizens Club, and the Yankee Flippers Diving Club. Also documented are the construction of the original building, the addition of the pool building, and the gymnasium.

Of special interest are the records of YMCA Week. This was a nation-wide event, but each community was responsible for its YMCA week activities. The national board offered special church bulletins that could be passed out on the Sunday of YMCA week. Branches were urged to set up a special YMCA Week Committee, to have at least one major program activity planned for the week, come up with fresh ways to tell the YMCA story in the area, and order national aids for the local radio and TV stations. Each branch nominated a local family as the "YMCA Family of the Year."

Dates

  • 1948-1995 (bulk 1951-1970)

Creator

Conditions Governing Access:

The collection is unrestricted.

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use:

Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be discussed with the University Archivist.

Historical Note

In 1941 the West Roxbury Citizens' Association met with the leaders of the YMCA of Greater Boston to try to solve the growing problem of juvenile delinquency in their neighborhood. In 1942, with the help of William MacCormick, West Roxbury had its first 'Y' club. Meetings were held wherever they could find the available space: churches, cellars, schools, and playing fields.  By 1945 the activities included club meetings, sports, and a day camp for boys in the Blue Hills Reservation.

In 1948 a campaign drive to construct a permanent building began with the help of the Boston YMCA, which raised $500. Community support was strong, and in 1950 the building at 15 Bellevue Street was erected, costing $110,000. The West Roxbury-Roslindale branch of the YMCA was dedicated on March 18, 1951. In the first five years of existence, 1,000 people joined, and the programs were expanded to include canoe trips for older boys, day camps for girls, Camp Stay Home for younger children, and a variety of adult programs.

During 1952 the Board of Managers began to investigate the possibility of building an addition onto 15 Bellevue Street, which would include a pool. In 1955 a building committee was formed, and in 1956 the West Roxbury-Roslindale branch of the YMCA initiated a capital funds campaign for the addition. The ground breaking ceremony was held on January 26, 1958, and the building was dedicated on October 19, 1958.  In 1971 a new gymnasium building was added to the structure at 15 Bellevue Street.

Today, the West Roxbury-Roslindale branch of the YMCA focuses on children and the elderly. It is a large provider of after-school care for schools in West Roxbury, Roslindale, and Dedham. Other programs offered include adult and youth sports, aquatics, fitness, and a comprehensive active older adult program.

Extent

3.52 cubic feet (7 containers, 1 flat file folder)

Language

English

Overview

In 1941, the West Roxbury Citizen's Association met with the leaders of the YMCA of Greater Boston to try to solve the growing problem of juvenile delinquency in their neighborhood. In 1942, with the help of William MacCormick, West Roxbury had its first YMCA club. Meetings were held wherever they could find the available space: churches, cellars, schools, and playing fields. By 1945, the activities included club meetings, sports, and a day camp for boys in the Blue Hills Reservation. In 2001, the West Roxbury-Roslindale branch of the YMCA focused on children and the elderly. It is a large provider of after-school care for schools in West Roxbury, Roslindale, and Dedham. Other programs offered include adult and youth sports, aquatics, fitness, and a comprehensive active older adult program.

Overview

The records of YMCA of Greater Boston, West Roxbury/Roslindale Branch document the organization's administrative, religious, social, educational, community activities. Some of these activities include adult informal education classes: square dancing, beginner swimming lessons, tennis lessons, and bridge instruction. The collection also contains information on the branch's clubs, including the Y's Men's Club, Senior Citizens Club, and Yankee Flippers Diving Club. Also documented are the construction of the original building, the addition of the pool building, and the gymnasium. Of special interest are the records of YMCA Week, a nation-wide event in which local branches planned major programs, developed creative ways to tell the YMCA story in their areas, and sponsored ads on local radio and TV stations. Branches also nominated a local family as the "YMCA Family of the Year."

System of Arrangement:

Organized into 2 series: 1. Administrative Files and 2. Subject Files.

Physical Location

66/3, FF5/D1
Title
Finding aid for the Young Men's Christian Association of Greater Boston, West Roxbury/Roslindale Branch Records
Author
Finding aid prepared by Cat Lea
Date
January 2001
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Description is in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Northeastern University Archives and Special Collections Repository

Contact:
92 Snell Library
Northeastern University
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston MA 02115 US