14RMINNIMP ww. -
12 Friday, January 7, 1977
THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS
LL THE ROTT BR
A Brief History of Detroit's YM-YWHA
By IRVING I. KATZ
Temple Beth El
In 1891, when Detroit's
Jewish population was
about 1,500, a Young
Men's Hebrew .Associa-
tion (YMHA) was or-
ganized at 434 Brush St.
Membership was open
to young men above 21
years of age. The initia-
tion fee was $1 and the
dues were $5. The con-
stitution also provided for
a junior membership for
young men above the age
of 15, with dues of $3.
rary Commission • and tion and indicated that
president of the board of the Community Fund
Temple Beth El.
would help finance it.
The officers consisted
Later, a room was The Jewish Woman's
of a president, vice presi-
rented in the Hanna Club had sponsored, since
dent, secretary, treas-
Schloss Bldg. headquar- 1919, a 14-room home at .
urer and five directors.
The first secretary was ters of the United Jewish 89 Rowena St. (now Mack
Charities, on High Street Ave.) for employed
Sol J. Gronemann. The
first guest speaker at the (now E. Vernor). A mem- Jewish girls. It was de-
bership campaign pro- cided, therefore, to use ■
"Y" was Magnus Butzel,
duced 75 young men. An the house on Rowena as
father of the late Justic
instructor _was engaged headquarters for the
Henry M. Butzel and
for twice-a-week gym work newly formed Young
Fred M. Butzel, who was
at that time president of and basketball, and at a Women's Hebrew Associ-
match arranged with the ation.
the Detroit Public Lib-
YMHA of Toledo, the De-
At first the building
troit "Y" was the victor.
served the double pur e
The "Y" also held of
monthly literary eve- clubhouse, but so rap y
nings. Debates were ar- did the young organization ,•
ranged on topics pertain- grow that before long it
ing to Judaism, papers was obvious that the house
were presented __on was not large enough -to
Judaism by various care for both departments 1.1
members, followed by dis- and the residence was
cussion, and prominent given up to make room for
Jewish and non-Jewish the more important work
_ speakers were invited.
of reaching the many hun-
A dance was held every dreds of young girls who
Saturday evening at the wanted and needed the
Schloss Bldg. gym. By "y".
1917 the "Y" had a mein-
Describing the scope of
en- the "Y" activities in a re-
tered7 World War I, most that "in 1919 the house Awl
members answered the was considered spacious;
call of our country and today, despite the elastic
the "Y" disbanded.
walls, it is crowded to ca-
The YMHA resumed its pacity. The clubhouse
existence on Nov. 20, now hums with activity ••
1925. The dollowing year, from cellar to garret, to
the "Y" began the publi- say nothing of the Little
cation of its magazine Theater, which not only -
houses dramatic per- --I
The YMHA rented formances, lectures, par-
facilities in the Jefferson ties and entertainment,
IntermediateSchool but also regular club
where physical recreation meetings in relays".
In addition. to clubs,
activities for members
only were conducted on there were classes in lit-
music, cooking sewing, sio
The "Y" also conducted decorative art, aesthetic
Friday night religious and ballroom dancing.
services and a social hour There was also a glee club
after services which were which rendered the litur-
gical music at the weekly
In 1929 the YMHA Friday evening religious •
Merged with the Jewish services.
Jewish festivals and ,€„
In 1921 there came to holy days were suitably
the Jewish Woman's Club observed and a seder
of Detroit, now the De- service
cs leurbv hicoeus
sep .onsored at
troit Section of the_Na-
tional -Council of Jevvish
The "Y" conducted a
Women, a plea that some- bureau of personal service
thing be done to provide as well as a free employ-
the young Jewish girls ment bureau. During the
and women of the city summer, the "Y" offered
with some organization of to its members the
facilities of the camp at
Detroit's Jewish popu- _Jeddo, overlooking the
lation at that time was waters of Lake Huron, "at
--about 40,000. the very nominal rate of
After much discussion, $11.00 per week".
the problem was taken to
In 1933 the YWHA
William Norton of the De- joined the Jewish Centers
troit Community _Union, Association, which was
who approved the forma- renamed the Jewish
tion of such an organiza- Community Center.
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WE'LL NEVER LEAVE YOU STRANDED
GREENFIELD at 101/2 Mile
Nazi Was Head of Israeli Firm
Wolfgang Wick, a member was a blunder.
of the Austrian Nazi
Party who served in the
SS during World War II, -
was recently discovered
to have served for five
years as chairman of the
board of the Israeli chem-.
ical company, Periclass.
After World War II,
Wick invested heavily in
Israel, and visited there
Wick's name was with-
drawn last year from the
running for head of Rot-
ary International, after
the exposure of his Nazi
One Israeli govern-
ment official said Wick's