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Histories of Clubs Hosting RI Conventions
Rotary Club of Lucerne (Luzern), Switzerland
Rotary International District 1980
The wheel of time turned back.
In 1923, Dr. Iur asked Fred Heller, a lawyer in Lucerne, while in New York, whether Lucerne was ready for the establishment of a Rotary club in Luzern "because there is still no Rotary Club in Switzerland".
That same year, the engineer Carl Ernie learns during its return trip on the steamer SS America, met the "full-blooded Rotarian of the pioneer generation," Mr. Shannon White of Kansas City.
White's descriptions of the meaning and purpose of Rotary impressed Erni deeply.
Six months later, the men decide to Fred Heller, Carl Erni and the architect Max Zurich met on 4 July 1924, with the initiative for the establishment of a Rotary club.
Meanwhile, on 5 May 1924 the first Rotary Club was founded in Switzerland in Zurich. In the minutes of the clubs in Zurich there is a note which says that there were guests from Lucerne, Basel and St Gallen.
These delegations would all have the intentions to establish a Rotary Club in their cities.
In May 1925, the General European Secretary of Rotary International, Warren Teele, as well as Mr. Heller, Ernie, Zurich and now also Hans Reinhard (Director of Thos. Cook travel agency in Switzerland) met at the Hotel Schweizerhof and decided that it was the best place for future meetings and to carry out the work required to form the new club.
The objectives receives strong support from the RC Zurich: On 14 and 21 May 1925 it comes to the first two "provisional" lunches, and by 1300 hours on 28 May 1928, the actual inauguration ceremony will be held at the Hotel Schweizerhof.
It was further agreed that Thursday lunch time would be the ideal time for the regular meetings at the Hotel Schweizerhof.
After the Rotary Clubs of Zurich, Bern and Geneva, Lucerne is the fourth Rotary Club of Switzerland.
From the hand craft of the President of the Rotary Club of Zurich, Dr. George Wettstein, a hammer was forged as a symbol of friendship and peace as well as a box of good Rotary cigars.
On 12 June 1925, the confirmation comes from Chicago: The Rotary Club of Lucerne as has been chartered as Club Number 2091, and been included as a member of the great Rotary family.
Founding Members above:
Biland, Jenny Arnold, director of industrial manufacturing company
CJ Bucher, printers
William Ecker, Opticians
Edward Gübelin, watchmaker and Jeweller
AS Hanmer, representatives of the Cunard Line
Dr. Fred Heller, lawyer
Dr. Fritz Keller, Editor
Franz Koch, automobiles
Hans Reinhard, director of Thos.Cook & Son
Fritz Ringwald, Director of the Central Swiss power plants
Adolf Sigg, director of Schindler & Cie. AG
Dr. Frederick Stocker, eye doctor
Victor Wiedemann, hotelier
Max Zurich, architect
John Züst, director of the oxygen-and hydrogen-Werke AG.
# 1 On 1 to 2May 1926 saw the first district conference in Lucerne. It is not only the 54th Rotary district, but also performed the charter party for the RC Lucerne.
# 1935 saw the club with 61 members.
The 10-year anniversary will be celebrated with a nice summer cruise to Vitznau and with a festive ball.
# From 19 to 23 May 1957 the annual Rotary Convention is held in our city.
5,238 delegates, 4,464 guests and 213 youths from 78 countries attend the convention.
# Liechtenstein becomes the 100th country to join the nation of Rotary International and simultaneously, joins our district.
# In 1975 the RC Luzern celebrates its 50th anniversary.
# Lucerne is a part of the 180th District in Rotary .
# The annual District Conference will be held in Lucerne.
# Professor Gottfried Boesch wrote for the occasion a great anniversary publication.
# 4 to 5 March 2005 will take place in Lucerne, the 100-year anniversary of Rotary International.
At the weekend festival in the Art - Lucerne Cultural Centre, 2,300 people will participate.
# Federal President Samuel Schmid and Rotarians and the Hereditary Prince Alois of Liechtenstein will give speeches.
# An anniversary donation of one million francs to the Rotary Foundation, has been approved by the joint Switzerland and Liechtenstein Districts.
this history extracted with thanks from the Clubs web site.