By Josephine Harrison Halliday - (President)
August Third 1901.
Before writing of the Colorado Springs Branch I will give a short history of the origin of The Needle-Work-Guild of America, which is an outgrowth of an English Society - founded by the Late Lady Wolverton.
The American branch was organized in the year 1885 with a central bureau at Philadelphia. From this, have sprung numerous branches all over the United States.
Each branch, having an independent existence while conforming to the general constitution controls the distribution of the garments which it collects.
The Guild is all embracing including among its members men, women, children and even invalids. Being now sectarian, its members and Directors may be found in all denominations.
The aim of The Needle-Work-Guild is the giving of plain, new and suitable garments, to Hospitals, Homes and other Charities. The giving of two or more new garments a year, constitutes membership. While anyone obtaining contributions from ten or more persons beside her own, contribution (or the equivalent of twenty two garments) and one donation in money (no amount specified) becomes director.
But one meeting a year is required for the election of officers etc. altho' more may of course be held at the pleasure of the officers as a social meeting or "Guild Tea" for the exhibition of garments and meeting of all members is deemed by many to be a great stimulation to interest in the work.
Thus simple its plan while its possibilities are great and the full fruition of which let us hope our successors of the coming century may realize.
Lord the more communicated- more abundant grows (Milton)
Through the suggestion of my sister (Miss Annie May Harrison) then a member of a New York City Branch of the N.W.G. we sent out invitations to a hundred or more friends, to meet at my home, 260 N. Weber St., October 28th 1893, with a view to organizing a branch Society in Colorado Springs. In response to the invitation a large number of ladies came upon the day named and then organized the Colorado Springs Branch of the Needle-Work Guild of America and the following officers were elected. President- Mrs. Josephine H. Halliday, Sect'y & Treasurer- Miss Elizabeth P. Martin (106 Platte Ave.), Vice Presidents- Mrs. Wm. Riddle & Miss Sarah Dorsey. Directors were appointed in the various churches. Within three weeks we made our first collection of 274 garments.
Thus began the existence of the Guild, which is so dear to the hearts of many of us and which has grown till the present year when we number our members by the hundreds and our last collection of garments for 1900 was 1327.
The Colorado Springs Branch of the Guild fills a peculiar want owing to the invalid and transient population of this place.
The original officers served six successive years when they retired, and Mrs. Wm. Riddle was elected President with Miss Evelyn Carrington Sect'y & Treasurer.
August 3rd 1901
Josephine Harrison Halliday Ex-President
To The President of the Colorado Springs Branch of The Needle-work Guild of America of 2001-
Only a line of Greeting with best wishes for you and the work which is now in its infancy. No doubt, the good work has grown beyond that which we are able to even dream.
However I am positive that your workers are no more willing and enthusiastic than those of today.
One beautiful feature of our work here has been helping the many invalids, some of whom are the loveliest cultured, refined people, who little realized they would ever need assistance. Sometimes it requires the tack of beloved pastor or Physician to help us reach such cases, in fact "The right hand must not know what the left hand doeth."
Most of the Guild workers belong to every other charatable [sic] organization in the town, that of course is not strange in a City so small as this.
If all goes well I hope next month to take the "Circle Trip" and help organize branches in Ouray and Durango, perhaps in Alamosa and Cripple Creek.
May the Lord bless you in all good work.
Sincerely Ida Wheaton Riddle
Pres'nt C.S.B.N.G. of A.
811 N. Tejon Street
Colorado Springs Colorado
August 4th 1901
[1 sheet of printed information on the Colorado Springs branch of the Needlework Guild of America and a list of branches]
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