History of the Macon Rotary Club
In 1912 Macon was contacted to see if there was enough interest in the community to form a Rotary Club. In the latter part of 1913 John Hancock became interested in forming a local Rotary Club and called a meeting of twenty-five prominent Macon leaders in a small room at the Dempsey Hotel. At that meeting committees were approved, officers were nominated and a constitution and bylaws were established.
In January of 1914 the first meeting of the Macon Rotary was held at the Dempsey with the following charter members: W.T. Anderson, president and editor of The Telegraph; Homer Arnet, merchant; T.A. Bardwell, hardware dealer; W.G. Billings of the Georgia Life Insurance Company; Edward W. Burke, publisher; W. Arthur Chapman, druggist; Walter Collins, merchant; Charles Cone, merchant; W.E. Dunwody, brick dealer; Howell B. Erminger, Jr., lumber dealer; Robert J. Flournoy, jeweler; John W. Hancock, general manager of the Atlantic Ice and Coal Corporation; Richard E Lawton, wholesale confectioner; Albert McKay, tailor; John J. McKay, merchant; James A. Porter, manufacturer; Dr. W.C. Pumpelly, physician; Marion Ramsey, merchant; Malcom Ross, clothing merchant; W.C. Reed, steel man; W.A. Scott, merchant; Eugene W. Stetson, banker; Robert Smith, piano dealer; J.W. Collins, grocer; J. Freeman Hart, Sr. of the firm of Jesse B. Hart, Mortician; and Charles W. Stroberg, merchant.
The Macon Rotary Club was officially chartered on March 1, 1914, with its first president being John W. Hancock.
The first officers and directors of the Macon Rotary Club were:
|President - John W. Hancock||
|Vice President - W.T. Anderson||W. Arthur Chapman|
|Secretary - W. G. Billings||Marion Ramsey|
|Treasurer - J. Freeman Hart, Sr.||E.W. Burke|
Over the years the meeting place of The Macon Rotary Club has varied; from the third floor of the Woolworth's building on Cherry Street, the Dempsey Hotel, Rosewood, the Macon Hilton/Crowne Plaza Macon, to its present meeting place at the First Presbyterian Church. However, its commitment to excellence remains unchanged.
Shortly after the Macon Club was formed in 1914, Balfour designed the unique emblem by using a heart in the middle of the wheel, since Macon was known as "the heart of Georgia". The club bulletin also adopted the idea and became "Rotary Heart Throbs" - later shortened to "Throbs".
"Throbs" began during the presidency of J.D. Crump, two years after Macon Rotary Club was organized, and has remained in continuous publication.
Every Rotary Club chartered after June 6, 1922 has the same constitution. The standard constitution was adopted by the voting delegates during the convention held in Los Angeles. While no club can amend it, it has been amended by the voting delegates at later conventions. Clubs organized prior to 1922 were given the option of either retaining their own club constitution or adopting a new one. The Macon club elected to retain its own, written by Judge Malcolm D. Jones. The bylaws have been amended on several occasions.