The National Federation Of Afro-American Women and the Colored Women’s League merged and created the National Association of Colored Women League which enabled them to work together for the betterment of regional and local black women organizations.
As of 1896 to 1904 it was known as National Association of Colored Women, but in 1904 it became National Association of Colored Women’s Club. It implemented the motto “Lifting as we Climb” to promote self-help among women. Mary Church Terrell was elected the president at the meeting at Washington’s Ninth Street Baptist Church. She was the first Afro-American Women to earn a college degree and was known as the social activist for civil rights and suffrage. The joint session was attended by some of the notable personalities including Harriet Tubman, Francis E.W. Harper, writer and poet, Victoria E. Matthews, founder of the White Rose Mission of New York, Josephine S. Yates, educationist and writes.
This organization helped all African-American women by promoting self-support, and working on the issue of civil rights, women suffrage and injustice. The two leading members of this club were Josephine St. Pierre Ruffin and Mary Church Terrell. Both women were quite educated and had wealthy parents. Their aim was to expose the positive side and efforts made by people of color through women.
Father of Mary Church Terrell, a former slave established his business and became the wealthiest man in the south. He managed to send his daughter to college. She earned degrees both in bachelors and masters. She worked against segregation in public eating places. Josephine St. Pierre Ruffin was born on August 31st, 1842 in Boston. Her father was a successful clothes dealer. Her parents also supported her education.
Unlike other white women’s group, National Association of Colored Women’s Club worked for gender and race, uplifting black women, men and children. National Association of Colored Women’s Club raised over $5,000,000 after the USA entered World War I. The organization’s interests expanded as it evolved including raising money for libraries, orphanage, kindergarten, and homes for elderly and other issues related to the black community. They not only highlighted and solved the problems but they also promoted cultural events such as literature groups and musical concerts.
National Association of Colored Women’s Club continued its work during World War II and Cold War. Nowadays National Association of Colored Women’s Club has organizations in 32 states and hold national biennial conferences and hold educational workshops. The National Association of Colored Women’s Club also has started working on current issues such as eradication of violence against women and fight against Aids.