History of the Club

In 1951 a group of ten women set out to locate an appropriate facility for women’s organizations to meet in a comfortable and congenial atmosphere.  They found such a place in the Canfield residence. The original name was the Ann Arbor Women's City Club (AAWCC).

Dr. Roy Bishop Canfield, a professor of medicine at the University of Michigan Hospital, had purchased the home at 1830 Washtenaw from Charles Spooner in 1915. The original house dates back to 1886 when it was surrounded by blueberries and other fruits, and the owner was a well to do fruit grower and community leader. Mr. Spooner subdivided the land and built elegant houses that we can still see in the neighborhood, our Ann Arbor Women's City Club being one of them. For a fascinating description of the history of the house, including its beginnings as a simple farmhouse, see the article about The Three Lives of 1830 Washtenaw by Grace Shackman. 

After our founders purchased the house it served the purpose very well for a few years.  The Board of Directors hired a general manager to assist them in the many activities of the Club.  The demand for space grew, and it was readily recognized that a new facility was needed.  However, after looking at several options the Board decided to expand the present building.

Ralph Hammett was engaged in 1962 to design a modern addition, which would include a dining room, auditorium, office, main lobby, and a member lounge.

In January 2008 the membership voted to change the name to Ann Arbor City Club and began a renovation project: Campaign for Today and Tomorrow: A Renaissance. Phase 1 of the renovation, completed in the fall of 2008, includes an enlarged ballroom with more windows facing the back lawn, more restrooms for women and men, an elevator from the main floor down to the dining room level, and new furniture and decor in the lobby and ballroom.


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