Gaynor Club

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The Gaynor Club was founded in the fall of 1907 by Miss Bertha Hussey, who was then the preceptress at Ladies' Hall. She chose Ruth Wheaton Johnson to be the first director, and the name Gaynor Club came from the songwriter Mrs. Jessie Lovel Gaynor, whose songs were then popular. The club was formed out of a desire to have a women’s version of the men’s Glee Club, which was founded in 1906. The Gaynor Club was a women’s musical group which included both vocal and instrumental involvement. The group put together yearly performance programs, often presented locally at the First Baptist Church. They also were known to travel to put on concerts throughout West Michigan, and at times, over the radio. The club eventually dissipated after the close of their 1946-47 season, following the return of many male students from the armed forces and therefore an increased involvement and interest in men’s and mixed gender singing groups, such as the Kalamazoo College Singers.


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