History of the Harvard Club of Quincy
Back in the year 1934—when the United States was mired in the throes of the Great Depression—a group of ambitious men decided to bond together by establishing the Harvard Club of Quincy (“The Club”). While little is known about these original members, we do know that they represented many different economic and vocational backgrounds, and had earned Harvard degrees over a number of decades that straddled the close of the 19th Century. In fact, the leader of this effort—who has been forever designated as the “founder” of The Club—was W. Burton Webster (Class of 1911), while the first president of The Club was Nathaniel S. Hunting (Class of 1884) and had graduated 27 years earlier. These leaders solidified The Club’s existence by adopting a Constitution & By-Laws on March 20, 1934.
These initial By-Laws stated that potential members must satisfy two requirements: 1) be a resident of Quincy, Braintree, or Weymouth, and 2) be listed in the Harvard Alumni Directory or have attended Harvard University for at least one year. Today these membership requirements are essentially the same, although a subsequent amendment to the By-Laws in 1986 welcomed residents of Milton to also become members of The Club. Another amendment in 2011 did not change the nature of the By-Laws, but rather introduced more modern wording to this governing document.
In the subsequent 77 years since the founding of The Club (i.e., 1934 to 2011), there were 33 different presidents and numerous other officers (vice presidents, clerks, and treasurers)—all of whom were willing to contribute their time and effort for no monetary compensation. In 2012, The Club elected Hannah Beal Will (Class of 1985) its 34th—and first female—president.
Today The Club operates as a tax-exempt corporation under Section 501(c)(3) of the federal Internal Revenue Code (status granted in January 2012) and as a domestic corporation through the Secretary of State of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (certificate granted in December 2011). Several annual filings are required so that The Club can maintain its good standing with both federal and state authorities.
The Club holds an Annual Meeting which, since 2006, occurs on the last Sunday of January. With no formal clubhouse in which to meet, these gatherings take place in a local restaurant/tavern and consist of a brief business meeting followed by a period of fellowship.
One final aspect of The Club is most worthy of mention. Even though The Club was founded in 1934, there still exists an intimate connection with the original founders. One of those insightful men was a highly successful Quincy-based businessman and philanthropist—and The Club’s third president—named Delcevare King (Class of 1895). Upon his passing on March 21, 1964 at the age of 89, he established a trust and named The Club as one of its beneficiaries. As a result, The Club receives an annual income distribution from this trust in perpetuity. Even though this distribution may be modest given the hefty cost of living these days, it provides a priceless permanent connection between the current members of The Club and the visionary men who, way back in 1934, brought their dreams to fruition by creating The Harvard Club of Quincy.