Instagram post by @bgca_clubs Boys & Girls Clubs of America

Starting a Boys’ Club during the 19th century was no easy task. Suitable buildings were hard to find. Furnishings had to be begged or borrowed. And few people were willing to undertake the work.

All of which made Mary Hall eminently qualified for the task. Connecticut’s first woman lawyer, she knew about battling the odds. An advocate of female suffrage – 40 years before the 19th Amendment granted women the right to vote – she also believed in improving the lives of children.

A resident of Hartford, Conn., in 1880, Hall took up the cause by founding a new Club organization – the Good Will Club – when its predecessor had to close. Among the improvements: a city-style government system for the Club’s “citizens,” establishing the fact that even tough street kids, given opportunity and guidance, could get along and abide by the rules.

For almost 50 years, until her passing in 1927, Mary Hall kept the faith with the Good Will Club. The organization she founded lives on today as the @bgclubhartford. #WomensHistoryMonth

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