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Old documents recall history of community service

How the YMCA has sustained its mission

A copy of the articles of incorporation list the names of the town’s key industrialists in 1885. Mark Ashton. (click for larger version)
May 24, 2012
SOUTHBRIDGE — Question: What's 130 years old, has a lively 50-year-old offspring and about 5,000 friends, and is energetic and engaged in more activities than when it was 20 years younger?

Answer: The Tri-Community YMCA, which has been pursuing its non-profit mission of service to the community since local industrialists "associated themselves with the intention of forming a corporation under the name of the Young Men's Christian Association of Southbridge."

That last phrase, taken from the incorporation papers filed with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in July of 1885, goes on to express the reasons behind formation of the association, mainly "for the purpose of the spiritual, mental, and social improvement of young men, to promote kindly intercourse among them, and to provide places for reading rooms, libraries, and social meetings."

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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