histories of Rotary's First 100 Clubs
Rotary Club of Dayton 47
Rotary International District
On May 27, 1912, 16 Daytonians met with Russell Geiner, President of the Kansas
City Club in the ballroom of the Dayton Club. Among them were Scott Pierce to
become the Club's first President (and a near relative of Barbara Bush) and
James Woodhull whose legacy initiated the endowment fund for our club.
The Provisional Club
received its full membership as Club No. 47 in the International Association of
Rotary Clubs with proper charter presentation ceremonies on June 2, 1913.
While the Club was still
in a provisional status, the Miami River, with appalling suddenness, burst its
bounds (photo on
right, click for enlargement)
on Tuesday, March 25, 1913.
Among those who rallied to help were the Rotarians, both from Dayton and other
clubs in the United States and Canada. After the debris was cleared, practically
all Dayton Rotarians joined the effort to raise two million dollars to finance
flood protection measures which resulted in the massive earthen dam at strategic
points up and down the Miami Valley.
During the flood, aid in
the form of money, supplies and medicine was received from Cincinnati, Portland,
Oregon and Winnipeg, Canada, to name a few. A total of $4,200 of financial aid
was disbursed without a cent going to any Rotarian. Each employee of a Rotarian
suffering a severe loss was given $100 worth of household goods. This money was
contributed by his Rotarian employer.
Rotarians performing extraordinary services were Dr. H.H. Herman, physician at
National Cash Register, where 700 refugees were brought in. The following day he
had the assistance of 42 doctors and 74 nurses from Cincinnati and they treated
1,700 people. Major Robert L. Hubler assumed military command of the city,
feeding 21,000 people daily.
The new form of city
administration with a City Manager as the chief executive was instituted in
October, 1914 with special tribute to Rotarians J.A. Oswald and Lee W. James.
Colonel Henry Waite was hired at a salary of $25,000. Dayton was the first city
in the United States to use the City Manager form of government.
famous member was Orville Wright of the Wright Brothers, first men of