A new chapter in the long, distinguished history of the Williams Club begins Oct. 1 with a ceremony recognizing the donation of its headquarters to the College. Williams plans to lease the building to the club in an arrangement that benefits both parties financially. The club will continue its operations at its 24 East 39th St. double brownstone, recently appraised at $21 million.
“A property transaction of this size, especially in Manhattan, is a complicated matter,” Williams Interim President Bill Wagner says. “I thank the club and its leaders not only for their graciousness but also for their dedication to seeing this matter through.”
The club was founded in 1913 by such noted alumni as Herbert Lehman, Class of 1899, and Francis Lynde Stetson, Class of 1867. Its first contributor was Williams President Harry Garfield, Class of 1885. The club moved to its current location, a few blocks from Grand Central Station, in 1924.
Since then it has been the site of countless College events and has provided a Williams-flavored home away from home for alumni, parents and friends from around the world. Alumni Fund phone-athons have taken place there for years.
“Reaching this milestone is immensely satisfying to the club,” says Jeff Urdang ’89, president of its Board of Governors. “It fits well with the club’s purpose, which since its founding has been ‘to advance the interests and influence of Williams College in New York’ and with the spirit of generosity that has long characterized relations between the College and the club.”