A few histories have been written about the New York State Button Society. Below is a reprint of one from 1968
1968 – First 25 Years – History Compiled and Edited by Beth Miner and Minerva Miner
The History of the Society dates back to the organization of its predecessor, The Central New York Button Club, which held its first meeting in July 1941, at the summer home of Mr. Hugh S. Allen on Skaneateles Lake. Mrs,. Allen was elected President.
In September 1942, Vera E. Cotter was elected President of the Central New York Button Club. Plans for a State Society were discussed.
On June 3, 1943, at a meeting in Auburn, at the request of Miss Cotter, Presidet, Mrs. Harriet Harvey presided and it was voted to comply with communication from the National Society to consider the formation of a New York State Button Society. Another meeting was held in Corland to discuss further plans. On August 7, 1943, in Syracuse, an organization meeting of the NYSBS was held. Miss Vera Cotter was elected President.
On October 2, 1943, the first business meeting of the NYSBS was held in Elmira. Committees were appointed, regular business transacted and speakers, exhibits and sales made the meeting an interesting one.
Our State Presidents:
Vera E Cotter 1943-44 Union Springs
Verner Clum 1944-46
Bertha Green 1946-47 Poughkeepsie
*Florence Aberle 1947-49 Albany
Blanche Wiley 1949-50 St. Petersburg, FL
Florence Leggett 1950-52 Watervalet
Gertrude Dieckhoff 1952-54 Babylon
Prudence Crawford 1954-56 Latham
Irma Hills 1956-58 Candor
*Adah Bennett 1958-60 East Setauket
Ethel Longstreet 1960-62 Chenango Bridge
John Whiteford 1962-64 Wassaic
Prudence Crawford 1964-66 Latham
Millicent Hatch 1966-1968 Old Westbury
This briefly compiled chronicle of the New York State district clubs represents their histories and, in a broader sense, the history of the New York State Button Society. Previous data, with newly acquired information, has been used to compile this booklet with the hope that it may please you to read the history of the New York State Button Society through twenty-five years, 1943-1968.
The invitation by Corning Glass Center of Corning, NY to hold our Silver Anniversary Celebration on their premises is a testimonial to the memory and perseverance of the Charter Members of our State Society.
The forming of district clubs, as outlined in this pamphlet, were the stepping stone which led to the organization which we represent. Twenty-five years of research have resulted in well-written articles, interesting educational programs, and button displays. Historical Societies and Museums have opened their doors for some of these displays, which have been accomplished by individuals.
The New York State Button Society has hosted the National Button Society on three occasions, has given two Presidents to the National Society and now we watch a third ascend to this honor.
The society’s Constitution has been amended from time to time to suit the needs of a growing Society. Four meetings each year in the early days have been cut to two, with permanent dates; the first weekend of each May and the third weekend of each September. Officers have been added, names have been changed, some dropped, and these changes all made by the wishes of the Society’s members as expressed by their votes.
At a meeting in Poughkeepsie, in 1946, it was proposed that we have a NYSBS Bulletin. Mrs. Aberle was appointed to take up the idea, and to produce the Bulletin. The first edition was called, “The Half Moon Edition.” For several years, it was the President’s duty to compile, edit and mail these bulletins to the members. Some time after Mrs. Dieckhoff’s election as President, with Mrs. Anita Weed serving as an appointed Editor, the office of the Editor became an elective office. The first copies, consisting of approximately ten mimeographed pages, have been replaced by a printed pamphlet large enough to suit our needs.
During Miss Adah Bennett’s term of office, she appointed a committee of two, consisting of Mr. Harold VanBuren and Mrs. Howard Aberle, to work up and present a fitting design for an official NYSBS Button. Mr. VanBuren designed the present insignia used on our State button. It was shown at a NYSBS meeting held on Long Island and was enthusiastically received. After the vote carried to accept the design, Mr. VanBuren took over the placing of an order for these buttons. The cost of them was underwritten by varying amounts from the various district clubs and by gifts from several state members, almost to the entirety of the cost. Clubs were reimbursed with buttons when ready, to the amount of their donations. From then until May 1966, Mrs. Alerle took charge of sales and mailing of the buttons. Since then, sales and the filling of orders is handled by Mrs. James E. Hills of the Half Moon Button Club in Albany, NY.
The appointed Chairman of Publicity will be eliminated by the end of the Society’s year, 1968. In its place is a newly chosen Elective Office, namely Publicity Correspondent. The duties will be included in the amendments recently made in the State’s Constitution.
Since becoming President of NYSBS, Mrs. Hatch, has presented to past presidents specially designed bar pins with a State Button attached, as a pendant, in token of appreciation, for their cooperation. During this same period, twelve plaques were made and presented to past presidents for their lifetime possession, after which they will be returned to the State Society to be awarded to future Past Presidents.
The revised District maps, the appointment of a Chairman for the sale of official state buttons, the Directive for Directors, Pointers to Guide Hosting Clubs, A Directive for Competition and Showing of Trays During State Meetings and the suggestion to rotate State Hosting by District Clubs were all special contributions of Mrs. Hatch’s term of office.
At the 25th Anniversary Meeting, in Corning, NY May 1968, anther specially designed button, made by Robbins Company, will be presented by the Society to those attending the official luncheon. The VanBuren design was adhered to, with pertinent dates added t commemorate the Silver Anniversary.
Also at this meeting, Mrs. Hatch will present a Flag Banner to the Society. This flag was made at the request of Mrs. Hatch and Mrs. Aberle, by Nellie Perkins. It combines the color of our official button with purple. The president hopes that Purple and Gold may be made the official colors for the State Society. Mrs. Hatch also urges that the cooperation between District Clubs and the Parent Society may continue and increase. With this, we may hope and realize greater pride in our State Society on successive anniversaries.