WHO: The Gateway Region YMCA
WHAT: Celebrating 170 years of history in St. Louis! Each branch of the Gateway Region YMCA will host a small celebration. Members and staff will enjoy cake and light refreshments on its foundation day (October 13).
WHEN: Friday, October 13, 2023
All 24 branches of the Gateway Region YMCA
WHY: To celebrate the Gateway Region YMCA’s impact in the Greater St. Louis region.
In 1844, twenty-three-year-old George Williams founded the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) in London, England. The Y arrived in North America a few short years later in 1851 in Montreal on November 25, then in Boston on December 29.
St. Louis became the 16th city in the nation to have a YMCA in 1853. On October 13, 23 men met to organize a YMCA in St. Louis at the 2nd Baptist Church on 6th and Locust.
From sending agents to the frontlines of the Civil War to provide visitations in the barracks, meeting the needs of an industrial society with “Railroad Branches”; to constructing a 25-bed hospital, and extending English language classes (and more) to St. Louis’ growing immigrant population in 1886, the YMCA has continued to meet the needs to the community it serves.