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Stanford Parents' Club History

Stanford Mothers Operated Student Rest Homes for over 30 year starting in the 1920's

The War Years of the 1940s

The Mothers' Club helped students and the country prepare for war and manage during the war.

This 1942 letter from Mrs. C.G. (Hazel) Vernier, President of the Mothers' Club, to all Stanford parents, reflects the club members' concerns about the war's impact on Stanford students.

 

"During the present crisis, the prompt assistance of young people becomes increasingly important and in the Mothers' Club we have a ready made tool for speeding the training of a talented group of young men and women for special usefulness in their chosen fields. We serve our country well by assisting our sons and daughters and their classmates in preparing themselves quickly and adequately for the responsibilities that await them. Our grief for the sacrifices required of our young men and women strengthens our determination to minimize those sacrifices by helping wherever possible in the proper training of their talents for use to the greatest advantage of all."

On May 21, 1942, The Stanford Daily thanked the Mothers' Club for their service to students, funded in part by their Spring Fete. Beyond supporting student scholarships, Rest Homes and welfare, the tickets, usually priced at $1, also included a ten-cent federal defense tax. This meant attendees were contributing not only to student needs but also to national defense efforts.

At the May 1942 Mothers' Club meeting, Sylvia Berry, a senior, outlined the students' war work in blood bank and salvage programs, including the success of campaigns for 'Every Thursday Stamp Day' and 'Dimes for Diplomas'.

Miss Christine Ricker, Director of Dining Halls, spoke at the February Mothers' Club meeting about 'When, What, and How Do Stanford Students Eat.' She explained that providing nutritious meals was very challenging during a time of great shortages. It required ingenuity to maintain a daily standard of 1,600 to 2,500 calories, especially when meats and fats were scarce or entirely unavailable. However, the most significant problem was labor. Employing student workers in the dining halls helped address this issue.

Photos courtesy of Stanford Historical Photograph Collection

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