The Miami Springs Woman’s Club
Designated Miami Springs Historic Site (2006)
This building has been home to the Miami Springs Woman’s Club since it was built in 1949. The structure is essentially an Art Deco building with some elements of Pueblo Revival style such as rounded corners. It was constructed by Andy Plassey, a pioneer settler whose memorial is located across the street in the Westward Drive median just west of City Hall and the Woman’s Club. The building also features Art Deco characteristics popular in Miami architecture at that time, including “eyebrow” overhangs above both entrances and a decorative wooden door that was donated by club member Mary Peace, whose family had a door-making business.
Founded in May of 1939, the Miami Springs Woman’s Club has been a significant charitable, educational and social presence in the community ever since. One of the organization’s early projects was to start the town’s first public library, all 171 donated volumes of which were originally housed in a small back room of the town’s Municipal Building. The books were donated by residents who attended a “Library Tea” at the Miami Battle Creek Sanatarium (now Fairhavens). To maintain the library and support the Woman’s Club Mrs. Lena Pearl Curtiss Wheeler, a founding member, donated two double lots for this building in memory of her mother, Mrs. Jennie Potter Neff, and her late husband’s mother, Mrs. Lua Andrews Curtiss Adams. At that time the property was appraised at $20,000, and the money to build the structure was raised by its membership through many fund raising efforts throughout the 1940s. The Woman’s Club membership continued to enlarge the collection, and maintained the public library for ten years in this building before the books were moved to the present library building at 401 Westward Drive.
The Woman’s Club is a 501 (c)(3) charitable and educational non-profit organization and continues to remember and honor Mrs. Wheeler’s generous donation by awarding a Lena Curtiss Wheeler Nursing Scholarship to a deserving nursing student each year. A much-needed and used service is the club’s Medical Loan Closet, which provides medical equipment to the community at no charge. A small Memorial Library exists at the clubhouse. Donated books are given in the memory of a deceased member or member of her immediate family. The Woman’s Club also hosts, participates in or sponsors many other charitable and civic functions, including the American Cancer Society Relay for Life and “Meet the Candidates” forums.