Joseph A. Caulder Collection
Past Rotary International Director 1928-29 - Regina, Sask., Canada
"Eyewitness to Rotary International's First 50 Years"
JOSEPH A. CAULDER - An eyewitness to Rotary International's first 50 years.
by Past R. I. Vice President Wilf Wilkinson
My first recollection of Past International Director Joe was when he came to visit my Rotary Club in Trenton Ontario Canada, which was part of a well populated district that included the City of Toronto and was known as District 707. It was probably the Fall months of 1963 and I had joined Rotary less than a year earlier but the short dynamic message delivered by Joe had a lasting impression. Joe was a member of the Rotary Club of Toronto which at that time had more than 600 members and was by far the largest club in Canada and his mission that night was to promote the District Conference and the International Convention.
The District Governor that year was the late Bob Day, who was the Chairman of the Bulova Watch Company, and a member of the Toronto Club and a member of the Host Club Committee for the 1964 Rotary International Convention which was being held in Toronto from June 7th until the 11th. I was truly impressed with every word that Joe spoke. He was given only five minutes by the President because the club already had arranged for a speaker that evening but he used every minute very effectively. He reminded us of the early days of Rotary and its subsequent beginnings in Toronto. It was wonderful to listen to such an articulate speaker who actually knew the Founder of Rotary, Paul Harris. He also told us about the two previous times Rotary International had selected the city of Toronto as the site of its International Convention (1924 and 1942). Months later I attended that Convention with my wife Joan and we were both so impressed by the numbers, the internationality, the programs and fellowship that we both agreed that it was something to which we should devote time, money and energy. I believe that it was Joe Caulder, along with the many other great District Governors of District 7070, who influenced my years of service in Rotary, and for this I will always be thankful to Joe.
Joe also influenced virtually every District Governor during the late fifties and all of the sixties, until he passed on in 1971. He had realized that Rotary had been somewhat remiss in not recording its history, particularly the very early years. As a result he started compiling a personal history of the organization as well as pictures of its early leaders and some of its major events. These records were kept in a series of binders and when a person was selected District Governor, Joe would loan him one of these binders telling him that he wouldn't get the subsequent binders until he returned the previous one. He also encouraged the recipient to copy any of the materials for their personal files. It should be remembered that in those days the District Governor was nominated in November or December, elected at the District Conference in January or February, attended the International Training Assembly at Lake Placid, New York in late April or early May and started his year as District Governor on the 1st of July. There were no Zone training meetings, at least in Zone 2, at that time. As a result the four volumes that were provided over a six month period to me by Joe were an invaluable asset and helped me immensely, particularly since I had come to the job at a relatively young age and after being a Rotarian for less than nine years.
I must admit that I saw little of Joe while I was Governor and was greatly disappointed when informed of his death in 1971. I, along with hundreds of Rotarians, attended his funeral at a Toronto Church and I regretted the fact that I never had an opportunity to meet with him after my year as Governor when I would have had far more time and more experience that would have allowed me to reap the full benefits of his Rotary knowledge.
In his Last Will and Testament he bequeathed his Rotary library to his friend and Past R.I. Treasurer Tibor Gregor, a member of the Rotary Club of Toronto Eglington, who around 2002 offered them to me. I tried to decide, given my busy Rotary life, how I might make the best use of this invaluable Rotary record. It was by chance that I was in contact with Past R. I. Director Dan Mooers, a member of the South Portland-Cape Elizabeth, Maine, Club, who suggested a web-site and after viewing the material actually offered to create the web-site. After receiving the agreement of PRIT Tibor, I turned all the materials over to PRID Dan in the fall of 2003 and I can't thank him enough for the hours he has devoted to making available to the Rotarians of the world, just in time for the celebration of Rotary's 100th Anniversary, this history of Rotary compiled by Joe Caulder .
|Copyright© Daniel W. Mooers||
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