Featured Photo: Women’s Relief Corps, 1942

Front row: Mrs. Merritt (Ruth) Harmon, Mrs. Garret Hodes, Mrs. Clyde Gill & Mrs. Elizabeth Wise.
2nd row: Mrs. Pat Smith, Mrs. Mattie Meats, Mrs. Martha Howland & Mrs. Iona Lytle.
3rd row: Mrs. Merthat Simale, Mrs. Lee Burd, Mrs. Clona Hollenbaugh, Mrs. Dora Herch, Mrs. Nancy Ashelford, Mrs. David Haymon.
Back row: Mrs. Mary Woodburn, Mrs. Bruce Null, Mrs. Howard Shank & Mrs. C. A. Nighswonger.

CONTINUED –Byron Tribune, May 4th, 1962–

Throughout the years the Corps has always been an active patriotic organization,. Many boxes of fruit, cookies other foods and gifts were sent to the service veterans at Hines hospital and other hospitals. Another of the many patriotic works was the presenting of the American flag to schools and churches not having a flag. Many times the group met in homes to make hospital gowns, robes, and other hospital needs for veterans.

One of the first money projects was a quilt made and raffled for $12.00. In August 1923, $65 worth of candy was sold at a Legion carnival. Another of the money projects was the WLS show sponsored in the Gill Hall in 1937.

The Corps always had an active part in the Memorial Day program, starting the evening before by bringing flowers to the Clyde Gill home. The bouquets were then assembled before being taken to the school yard and cemetery where they were distributed to the school children who placed the bouquets at the Monument and on the graves of the veterans. Records show that as many as 250 bouquets were used each year. The sailors were honored by a wreath and bouquets placed on the river during an appropriate service.

The members also participated in the Memorial Day parade by marching, riding in cars, or having a float. At the cemetery until recent years they conducted the service for the unknown soldier.

Easter plants and Christmas boxes were delivered to shut-ins of the town each year.

On Dec. 12th 1946, the Corps observed its 25th year with an Anniversary Tea at the United Church. The program consisted of musical numbers, an address by the Rev. James Hagerty and reminiscences of Corps days by Mrs. Mattie McNurlen.

Pins for 25 years of membership were presented that day to charter members, Mmes. Mable Gill, Nerva McKee, Mattie McNurlen, Anna McAffee, Cora Haynes, Carrie Johnston, and the Misses Clara Haymaker and Lilia Whitaker. Mrs. Carrie Green and Mrs. Lila Osborn also were presented 25 year pins.

At the time of disbandment eight other members were eligible for their 25 year pins: Mmes. Nellie Marget, Mary Holland, Elsie Shank, Gertrude Stukenberg, Ella Nighswonger, Kathryn Rieken, Minnie Mosiman, and Florence Kendall.

Due to the decreasing membership, it was decided to disband, so in January of 1962 the necessary steps were taken and in April the last official meeting of the Corps was held at the Community House and thus another worthy organization has joined the pages of history.

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