Original invitation

Original note sent by Urania Papas with invitation to meet and organize the club. Click to enlarge.

1948 invitation

Page from Original EOK By-Laws
listing original Charter Members
and Club’s purpose.

History of the Hellenic Women’s Club

The Hellenic Women’s Club, Inc was established in Boston in 1936 by seven women of Greek descent and is believed to be the oldest Greek American organization of its kind in the United States. Originally, these ladies got together as a sewing club to raise money for orphans during the Greek War Relief effort.

Ten years after its founding in 1936, members of the Hellenic Women’s Club became acutely aware of the plight of war-torn Greece and decided to hold a small dinner dance (ticket price: $6) to raise funds to assist the mother country. As a result of that first effort, club members were able to pack and ship overseas bundles of clothing, medicine, bandages and food as a contribution to the Greek War Relief.

The dance, known as the Mistletoe Ball, continued to be held annually in December or late November, and proceeds for many years were earmarked for the war orphans of Greece. In addition to its philanthropic success, the dance became a highly anticipated annual social event. In one of the early years, a Grecian prince was in attendance, and in the late 1980s Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis was a guest at the Ball while running for the United States presidency.

In its many decades, the Ball has seen thousands of repeat customers dance their way across the ballrooms of major hotels in Boston and Cambridge (although Boston’s signature Copley Plaza Hotel is most closely associated with the event) to the strains of big band, Greek, rock, swing and Christmas music. It is even rumored that some 20 to 30 married couples first met their mates at the Mistletoe Ball! Most importantly though, these thousands of guests have enabled astonishing growth in the scope and nature of the Hellenic Women’s Club’s philanthropic efforts.

1950 Dinner Dance Committee

1950 Dinner Dance Committee.
Mrs. Sally Trent, Mrs. Marianthie Frangoulis,
Mrs. Urania Papas, Mrs. Athena Speare

1950 Dinner Dance Committee

15th Anniversary Hellenic Women's Club 1951
L-R: Mrs. Helen Petrianos, Mrs. Theodora Stanton, Mrs. Virginia Mavraides, Mrs. Mary Sophios, Mrs. Athena Speare, Mrs. Anne Decaneas, Mrs. Matia Cocoris

1950 Dinner Dance Committee

The Boston Globe. October 15, 1961
“A distinquished anniversary occasion, the 25th annual Hellenic Ball, begins with a meeting at the Museum of Fine Arts.”

1950 Dinner Dance Committee