INDIANA BRANCH HISTORY
Miss Condit, daughter of the Rev. Blackford Condit, pastor of the Central Presbyterian Church of Terre Haute, Indiana, was a student at Wellesley College at the birth of The King’s Daughters movement in New York. The nature and value of the work strongly appealed to Miss Condit. After graduation and in the fall of 1887, she organized, from a class of young girls of the Central Presbyterian Church, the first circle in Indiana known as The King’s Daughters Circle. The work of these girls was confined mostly to the church, with some outside charity. At the death of Miss Condit in February 1891, the youthful circle was disbanded.
Pictured: Earnest Circle, Mable Wingfield Circle, and Philadelphia Circle of Indianapolis Collect Books to Benefit a Local Grade School – Brenna Alverson, Debbie Harker, Sue Claphan, Jane McNeal, and Lois Dillon)
The clarion call of love reached from Margaret Bottome’s Circle in New York to Miss Ella Runcie of Evansville. She became vitally interested, and in the spring of 1888, she formed, in Evansville, the second circle in Indiana, but the first of long duration. The initial work undertaken by this group of ten earnest women known as the Ella Runcie Circle, was hospital and charity work. After splendid service of thirty-one years, the circle was disbanded in 1919.
In-As-Much Circle of Terre Haute was organized March 25,1897 with eight women, and in May 1930 had a membership of 270, with the same leader. Mrs. Lewis Orth, who had served in this capacity for thirty-three years, had also been on the branch executive board for twenty-five years. The circle was the largest in the Indiana Branch and was instrumental in the formation of the Indiana Branch. The circle disbanded in 1977.
‘The Indiana Branch was organized in 1905 when the first state convention was held March 27 and 28 in Terre Haute at the St. Stephen’s Parish House. Up to this time, twenty-eight circles had been formed in Indiana. In 1905 there were fifteen active circles over the state with a membership of 594.
(At left: Letters for the Military collected by the Indianapolis Circles – Bev Duffer, Brenna Alverson, Lois Dillon)
The King’s Daughters’ Hospital in Madison was organized by Bethany Circle of Madison and was endorsed as a Branch project in 1907. The home for the hospital was bequeathed to The King’s Daughters of Madison by Mrs. Drusilla Cravens in memory of her husband, Judge John Cravens. The building was dedicated August 25, 1899.
The Indiana Branch established an annual Chautauqua Scholarship in 1923.
A one week camping period for Junior Girls was established in 1943 using leased facilities approved by the Camp Committee and the Executive Board. This continues as a successful Branch endorsed project staffed by volunteers from throughout Indiana.
A Career Girls Home in Indianapolis was planned, but due to various reasons the dream had to be given up. With the money accumulated for this project, the Student Grant Program was established in 1960 as a Branch endorsed project. This is a scholarship program available to college juniors and seniors who are residents of the State of Indiana. Funds for this program are derived from pledges from the circles in the Branch.
The Indiana Branch participates in the International King’s Daughters and Sons’ North American Indian, Around the World, Student Ministry Scholarship, and Health Careers Scholarship Programs.
Circles of members throughout the Indiana Branch continue to do great amounts of individual service “IN HIS NAME.”