The Rotary Club of Southampton was chartered on March 21st, 1938. The Club was sponsored by the Rotary Club of Owen Sound and the Charter Night was held at the Walker House on Thursday, May 5th, 1938.

 

As a nod to Southampton’s Fishing and Furniture/Plywood industry, the Menu and Order of Proceedings were in the form of a fish printed on a piece of plywood.

 

The Charter was presented by Geoffrey A. Wheable, District Governor from London, Ontario and there was a presentation of gifts:

 

  • USA Flag – Flint Michigan
  • Canadian Flag – Woodstock
  • Gong and Gavel – Owen Sound
  • Pins – London

 

 

1940 Southampton, Ontario Club made a donation of 200 GB Pounds (the equivalent of 13,000 GB Pounds or around 22,000 Canadian Dollars in today’s funds) to the Rotary Club of Southampton UK club to help support the city right after it had been heavily bombed during WWII.

 

 
2015  A British record dealer based in Austria discovered an old acetate recording of a soundtrack from the UK club thanking the Ontario club for their donation and he contacted the club via Facebook Messenger.  
 
 “Best wishes, from Andrew Milton, I am a record dealer and recently came across some acetate recordings dating from the 1950's, one of which appears to include a recording of a message to your Rotary Club from the Southampton Rotary Club in the UK. I have sent the recording to the Rotary Club in the UK in the hope that you can communicate with them about it. I'd be grateful if you could let me know if it means anything to you.”  Listen to the Recording
 
2019 The two Southampton Clubs reconnected when an Ontario Rotaran visited the UK Club and made a presentation about  Southampton Ontario to the UK Club.
 
The story of the ongoing connection between the two Southampton Clubs was recently featured in the Peace Edition of the UK and Ireland Rotary Magazine. Susan Macdonald said “I was thrilled to be interviewed about this when Colin and I visited with the UK Club and I made a presentation about our Southampton and the history between the two clubs”. Take a look:
 
 
The Rotary Club of Southampton was the original donor
 
In 1945, as World War II was drawing to a close Southampton Mayor Ellis Millard had a dream to open a hospital as a memorial to the men who gave their lives in this ultimate sacrifice.
 
The project was first supported by the Club who in September 1945 pledged $15,500 towards the purchase of Hillcrest Lodge as the site of the new hospital. The total cost of the project was around $50,000. The Hospital was opened on October 16th, 1947 and boasted 21 adult beds and 7 infant cubicles according to the first Annual Report.

The Club built the Rotary Scout and Guide Hall at 39 Grey Street, South

 

The Girl Guides still use this space, and many community organizations hold meetings and gatherings in the Hall