Please enjoy the memorabilia presented on this page. Viewing this memorabilia, you will be able to go back in time and read the details of how our club began and you will learn about the fine national organization of which we are a part. Click the images to see full size version of memorabilia.
HOW IT ALL STARTED… In the early 1950’s, some highly community-minded citizens decided San Mateo boys would benefit from having access to a Boys’ Club in the neighborhood. The Boys’ Clubs of America was picking up great momentum and had opened up approximately 400 Boys’ Clubs across the nation at this time.
A TWIST OF IRONY On June 22, 1953 an article appeared on page eleven in the San Mateo Times announcing that the San Mateo Boys’ Club had formed its first official board of directors. In addition, a separate article announced that twelve-year-old Johnny Doré had been killed in an accident as he jumped from his father’s tractor.
It turned out that Johnny’s father, John Doré Sr., was a developer in San Mateo County. Grieving for his son, Mr. Doré decided he wanted to do something to help young boys, so he joined the team of citizens who had assembled to start the San Mateo Boys’ Club. No club location had yet been identified, so John Doré donated the parcels of land on which the club stands today.
WHEN DID THE NAME CHANGE? In 1990, Boys’ Clubs of America became The Boys & Girls Club of America. In keeping with the national movement, the San Mateo Boys’ Club became the Mid-Peninsula Boys & Girls Club. Today, both boys and girls enjoy a wide variety of educational and recreational activities at the San Mateo club that began nearly fifty years ago.
COMMUNITY SPIRIT We recognize that there were many dedicated and hard working individuals who helped establish our club all those years ago. This page contains information derived from a compilation of newspaper clippings, newsletters, photos, and other memorabilia. Unfortunately, there is much about the club’s history that we have not yet discovered. Our intent is not to minimize the efforts of the many unnamed citizens who were involved, but to draw attention to the tremendous effort put forth by a community that cared so deeply for its youth. While plans were underway to open the San Mateo Boys’ Club, Boys Clubs of America was celebrating its 50th anniversary.
READERS DIGEST In February of 1956, Reader’s Digest published a special edition in recognition of the fifty year anniversary. This article reveals that there was a great need for structured after-school youth programming then, just as it is so desperately needed now. Many of the juvenile issues in those days are the same ones we face today, as we now approach the 100th MPBGCA anniversary.
SAN MATEO BOYS’ CLUB FIRST CONSTITUTION On April 6, 1954 the first board of directors established the club’s first constitution and by-laws. It is evident that careful thought went into assembling this document. We are also reminded how far common business technology has evolved since 1954!
BUILDING PLANS REVEALED On January 25, 1956, an article announcing the building plans appeared in the San Mateo Times.
WEEKLY EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETINGS Executive Committee meetings were conducted on a weekly basis. Below is a sample of the letterhead stationary used in correspondence pertaining to the Building Fund Campaign.
1956 FUNDRAISING DRIVE May 1, 1956 was the official kickoff date for a community fundraising effort. Club officials and dedicated community members campaigned hard to raise the necessary funds to build the club. Before the structure was completed, Boys’ Club activities were held on local school grounds in very limited space.Read the April 22 article that appeared in the San Francisco Examiner.
1956 BOOSTER MAIL SOLICITATIONS As part of the rally for community support, “booster” mail solicitations were sent out requesting assistance in Boys Club activities.
ONE FINAL TOUCH The San Mateo Boys’ Club was dedicated in memory of Johnny Doré. This San Mateo Times article from October 29, 1960 shows a picture in which the memorial plaque was unveiled.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS – THE EARLY DAYS Programs from the annual dinners in the early years show the board lists for those years.
1963 HONOREES The 1963 anniversary dinner program featured the honorees for the year. These four men were largely responsible for the successful launch of the San Mateo Boys’ Club.
THE PASSING OF A FOUNDING FATHER Only a few months after being honored by the Boys’ Clubs of America and by the San Mateo Boys’ Club, John H. Doré passed away in 1963.