The Edgewood Club 100 Years of Memories - page 6

4
T
he original concept sounds simple. Until you examine it closely.
“A … concrete embodiment of the community idea.” OK, except
how do you go about embodying the concept of community?
When those words describing the Edgewood Club appeared in
the long-forgotten
Pittsburgh Gazette Times
, the Mission-style
building was just beginning its unique public/private journey.
Today, as the Edgewood Club celebrates its centennial we can
see the merger of concrete and community for what it is: A very
good idea.
A very good idea for both
sides of the arrangement as
it has turned out. The idea
of placing a public library
and a private club under
one roof may sound strange,
but it works. No less an
authority on public libraries
than Andrew Carnegie originally endorsed it; no less than an
entire community has come to embrace it. Private club, civic
institution. If there’s a contradiction there, it’s not visible from
the southwest corner of West Swissvale and Pennwood.
Part of the reason may lie in the Club’s foundation. One
hundred years ago, the Edgewood Club had its roots in
community. As a former Club executive, George R. Craig,
explained in an article written to celebrate the organization’s
60th anniversary in 1963, “Automobiles were rare in 1904, and
thus Edgewood was quite isolated and self-contained.
Edgewood men took the train to work in the morning, they
took the train home in the evening, and once they were home
they were home. Any athletic, social or cultural activity of an
evening had to be within walking distance.”
“My father used to
talk about how the
Club was organized
in his kitchen!”
Dr. John T. Garland
Son of Charles Garland
The Edgewood Club: 100 Years of Memories
by Bill Modoono
1,2,3,4,5 7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,...48
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