The Woman’s Club of Wilmette

Located at 930 Greenleaf Ave. since 1910, the Woman’s Club of Wilmette has made countless meaningful contributions to the village.

When the Woman’s Club was founded in 1891, women had very few channels of participating in civil society or shaping municipal policy. The Woman’s Club was one of the only institutions which offered women a chance to collaborate on public issues.

Through “the power of women working together,” the Woman’s Club has and continues to meet the needs of the community.

“My idea was to bring together all the women socially, with some common interest that would unite them in such a way as to help one another, and at the same time be uplifting by cultivating their minds into activity and to think of the vital questions of the day.”

– Ida Law, Founder of the Woman’s Club of Wilmette

Ida Law, pictured in 1885

Ida Law invited around 20 women to her house in 1891 to discuss literature. By 1896, the club had already grown to 110 members, ready to begin shaping Wilmette.

“Progress is the Law of Life.”

This exhibit details some of the early achievements of the Woman’s Club of Wilmette and explores the Club’s attempts to push at societal expectations under their motto, “Progress is the Law of Life.”

Exhibit created by Caitlyn Mulligan, 2023