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318 Elmer L. Andersen Library, University of Minnesota, 222 21st Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55455

YMCA OF GREATER NEW YORK INSTITUTE BRANCH:
An Inventory of Its Records


TABLE OF CONTENTS
Historical Sketch | Contents Summary/Organization | Administrative/Access Info | Contents Details | Indexed Terms/Access Points


OVERVIEW OF THE COLLECTION

Creator: Young Men's Christian Association of the City of New York. Young Men's Institute.
Title: Young Men's Institute records
Date: 1885-1924
Collection Number: Y.GNY.041
Abstract: Publications and other printed materials of the YMCA Institute Branch. .
Quantity: .3 cubic feet (1 box)
Location: See Detailed Description section for box listing.


HISTORY OF THE YOUNG MEN'S INSTITUTE

The Young Men's Institute, the second location of YMCA work in the Bowery, opened in 1885 in a new building at 222-224 Bowery. It was named the Young Men's Institute to distinguish itself from the Bowery branch, which was located at 243 Bowery. Unlike the Bowery branch, the Young Men's Institute targeted young working men. In contrast, the Bowery branch was from its beginnings primarily a relief effort, focusing on the homeless and destitute. The Institute branch was the second building commissioned by the YMCA in New York City and was designed by Bradford Lee Gilbert, an architect well-known to railroad magnate and YMCA supporter Cornelius Vanderbilt. Not surprisingly, given Gilbert's significant involvement with railroad work, the building has been described as being "like a railroad station in Erie."

The Institute immediately offered classes for the betterment of young men, starting with different types of drawing classes as well as instruction in bookkeeping, arithmetic and penmanship. Sunday activities included Bible talks and prayer meetings. Notable speakers provided lectures; in 1886 both Henry Ward Beecher and Teddy Roosevelt spoke at the Young Men's Institute. In subsequent years the branch offered classes on carriage design, English for Italians, English grammar, and civil service test preparation.

Gymnasium equipment included ropes and swings, a bowling alley, horses, parallel bars, chest machines and striking bags. In an effort to combat declining membership, the branch installed a swimming pool and basketball courts in 1915 with funds secured from supporters such as Cleveland H. Dodge.

The branch closed in 1932, but the building, now with New York City landmark status, remains on the Bowery as the home of numerous artist studios and apartments. It is the only surviving 19th century YMCA building in Manhattan.

Information taken from the Landmarks Preservation Commission designation list, 1998, at http://www.neighborhoodpreservationcenter.org/db/bb_files/1998YoungMensInstitute.pdf.



SCOPE AND CONTENTS OF THE COLLECTION

The collection consists of copies of the branch newsletter, Institute Notes, and miscellaneous printed materials of the Young Men's Institute.



ADMINISTRATIVE INFORMATION

Use of Materials:
This collection is protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright, ownership, and to obtain all the necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials.
Preferred Citation:
[Indicate the cited item and/or series here].Institute Branch YMCA Records. YMCA of Greater New York. Kautz Family YMCA Archives. University of Minnesota.
See the Chicago Manual of Style for additional examples.
Processing Information:
Processed by: Louise Merriam, June 2012.
Catalog Record ID number: 6394294


DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE COLLECTION

The following section contains a detailed list of the materials in the collection. To request materials, please note the corresponding box number.

Box 320 Miscellaneous printed material and correspondence, 1885-1910. 2 folders.
Institute Notes, 1908-1917. 7 folders.
vol. 14-22, vol. 28 (incomplete).



INDEX TERMS

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the catalog of the University of Minnesota Libraries. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons or places should search the catalog using these headings.
Topics:
Young Men's Christian associations -- Administration.
Young Men's Christian associations -- Buildings.
Young Men's Christian associations -- New York (State) -- New York.
Places:
New York (N.Y.)
Persons:
Dodge, Cleveland H. (Cleveland Hoadley), 1860-1926.
Organizations:
Young Men's Christian Association of the City of New York. Bowery Branch.
Young Men's Christian Association of the City of New York. Young Men's Institute.