The Belgian American Century Club Of Michigan
On September 29, 1913 seven men met at a tavern on the east side of Detroit. The subject of mutual aid was brought-up....why not organize a men's century club. That is; 100 members to help each other in case of death or other needy circumstance. Within the next year or so the club had grown to its 100 member limit.
On January 3, 1914 The Belgian American Century Club (BACC) was incorporated in the State of Michigan.
The first member to pass-away was Camille Cools, the Editor of The Gazette van Detroit (still in publication). The year was 1916.
Through the past 95 years many changes have occurred and many social activities were enjoyed by thousands of people.
At the inception of the BACC the local Belgian community was very strong and tight socially. That is, many Belgian immigrants, in the early years depended on the local Belgian community for jobs, business and social activities as well as Belgian Churches and the missionary Priests who built them. To this day a lot of these activities still hold true.
Through the years the BACC has realized that people marry into other nationalities. At one time in our history to join the club you had to be Belgian or be of Belgian decent through your father. At present you must be of Belgian through your father, mother, grandmother or grandfather. Or be married to a person of Belgian decent. Also all barriers to limit membership was lifted. All candidates who qualify are admitted. Though the membership had grown to over 350, presently we stand at 200 members.
The BACC is active today with meetings the first Tuesday of each month (If it’s Tuesday it must be Belgium). We have several playing card leagues as well as a dart league. We also serve a lunch with refreshments. Good fellowship is always accepted. Other activities also abound throughout the year and we are often are joined by other local Belgian Clubs.
With supportive members and good leadership the Belgian American Century Club will continue to generate a quality social program for the Belgian community.