Of the many interesting items to be found in the collection, there are quite a few that have to deal with the YMCA (Young Men’s Christian Association).
In the early 1900’s, the city of Aberdeen had a huge fundraising campaign in order to establish and build their own YMCA. As seen in the campaign pamphlet “A Civic Movement to Meet a Great Civic Need,” it was believed that “If a boy’s time is occupied usefully, he will not want to become vicious,” and a local YMCA would certainly occupy a boy’s time. It was portrayed as a combination of a club, athletics, education, religion, and organization, all to be housed in one single building. There were dormitories to house away-from-home young men, a gymnasium, night school, a pool, and kitchen facilities. Everything needed was to be provided.
In 1915 the plans for the YMCA came to fruition when Mrs. A. E. Boyd donated a site for building, provided that the facility be erected in 5 years. The money was raised, and the cornerstone was laid on September 25th, 1921. Unfortunately the funding ran out, and the unfinished structure was closed up for three years. Then there was another funding campaign, and a reported $75,000 was raised in a time of 12 days. The building continued, and the YMCA was complete in the fall of 1926. Since then, there has been quite a lot of remodeling and additions, including some campsites with cabins. Staying with Aberdeen through the years, “the Y” remains a prominent fixture in the community for all to enjoy.
Other useful links:
A Civic Movement to Meet a Great Civic Need
YMCA Sustaining Membership
50 Years of Service and Growth
Aberdeen Family YMCA Website
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