REPUBLICAN WOMEN AND OUR HISTORY
What is the Republican Women’s Organization all about? How did it get started? What is the organizational structure?
Since we have many new members, and even for those who have been around for a while, there is much to learn about the history of our organization. It began many years ago. So, I thought it would be interesting to do a little research and explain our wonderful background from the top at the national level down to our own Club here in Nevada County.
National Federation of Republican Women (NFRW):
NFRW was founded in Chicago, Illinois in 1938. But, the story of Republican women’s clubs began many years before women could even vote and was inspired by the Republican Platform of 1872. Hundreds of independent Republican women’s clubs grew up around the nation until Marion Martin, assistant chairman of the Republican National Committee, called the meeting at the Palmer House in Chicago to organize the clubs into a national organization. Eleven states became charter members of NFRW and California was one of them. Today, the NFRW consists of thousands of active members in local clubs across the nation and several U.S. Territories. Millions of American women, 19 to 90, have helped shape our nation through wartime and peace, through depression and prosperity, through good times and bad, and all through the National Federation of Republican Women. Today’s President is Jody Rushton (Texas Federation) and the national headquarters is in Alexandria, Virginia. For more information visit the NFRW website at: www.nfrw.org
CALIFORNIA FEDERATION OF REPUBLICAN WOMEN (CFRW):
The California Federation of Republican Women was organized in January 1925. In January of 1925 three women issued a call to women of various clubs in Southern California and to women in San Francisco and Berkeley (yes Berkeley), to attend a meeting in Los Angeles. At this meeting the CFRW was formed and a President elected for each division, Southern Division, Central Division, and Northern Division of which our Club is a member. At the 1938 biennial conventions members voted to join the newly organized National Federation of Women’s Clubs under the name of California Council of Republican Women. In 1954 National became NFRW and California became CFRW. Mrs. O.P. Clark was the first CFRW President from 1925 – 1931. Nam-Yong Horn (Southern Division) is our current President. For more information about CFRW, visit the CFRW website at: www.cfrw.org
NEVADA COUNTY REPUBLICAN WOMEN FEDERATED (NCRWF):
Mrs. Wendell Robie of Auburn was the inspiration for our club’s organization in Nevada County. She first advertised in the Grass Valley paper in late 1951, inviting Republican ladies to meet at Veteran’s Memorial Building. Only 5 of the over 5,000 Republicans appeared. Undaunted, the ladies set forward and went to work and our Club was chartered in 1952. Mrs. Mary Powell was the first President. Mary didn’t feel up to the great responsibility, but recalls, “What could I do against such charming arm twisters?” It was a hard working dedicated first Club and for the first time in history Nevada County went Republican.
In 1962, Mrs. Robie of Auburn again visited the Nevada County Club as guest speaker. She must have been gratified when it was reported the club had 272 paid members. This was a giant step from the original 5 members just 10 years before!
This was just a brief history of our Republican Women’s Organization. We are a vibrant, active club now starting our 68th year with 224 members + associates at the end of 2019.