The Women Adventurers Club is especially for women who dream of adventure, of doing what seems impossible. Some of us can head out on adventures. Others find inspiration in reading about the adventures of others. In the internet age, we can join together and experience adventures together.
Explorers Clubs (AKA “Good Old Boy” Clubs)
When I think of an adventurer’s club I think about explorers clubs. Picture Phileas Fogg from Around the World in 80 Days (1873) relaxing in his club (the Reform Club) with his chums talking about whether someone could travel ’round the world in 80 days. This club might have looked like the photo above because most explorers at that time were big game hunters.
Men have had explorers clubs for a long time. Most of them excluded women until recently. The Royal Geographical Society in England, the one with all the famous explorers, was founded in 1830 but didn’t allow women until 1913. Isabella Bird was in the first group of women selected then. Fanny Workman and Mary Kingsley were also members.
The American Geographical Society (not to be confused with the National Geographic Society) was formed in 1851 in New York. It “encourages activities that expand geographical knowledge” (like exploring). Louise Arner Boyd was one of the first women allowed to join and she received funds from the AGS for her voyages to the Arctic. Amelia Earhart was another member.
Then there’s the Explorer’s Club in New York, founded in 1904. It didn’t allow women to join until 1981. Marine biologist Sylvia Earle was in the first group of women that joined.
In January 1925 a group of women formed the first explorer’s club just for women – the Society of Women Geographers. Their motto is “For Women Who Know No Boundaries” (I swear I didn’t know their motto when I selected “sans limites” as the motto for the AWC). As told by Atlas Obscura, (interesting article) the women, led by Marguerite Harrison and several other well-traveled explorers formed the club for “only women who have really done things.”
Archeologist Harriet Chalmers Adams was the first president of the SWG. Among the guest list at the first dinner in 1932 was Mrs. George Palmer Putnam (better known as Amelia Earhart). But what about women who haven’t “really done things?”
Why a Women Adventurers Club?
Why not? We are all adventurers in our lives. We all need a group to encourage each other to dream, dare, and do things we thought impossible. The club motto, “sans limites” (“no limits”) says it all. My purpose in presenting the Women Adventurers Club to you is to give you:
- Inspiring stories of women adventurers – past and present – to serve as inspiration.
- Books about these women and others, for interesting reading and support/encouragement. For example, this month I’m featuring Find a Way by Diana Nyad, which tells of her incredible feat of swimming from Cuba to Florida – alone – at the age of 60!
- My new podcast “The Women Adventurers Club Podcast” will be starting soon, and I’ll tell you how and where it will be available.
- Other specials and information about courageous women.
The best part about the Women Adventurers Club is that there are NO DUES. All you have to do is join and I’ll be sending you updates (not too many, I promise).
I hope to see you on the Women Adventurers Club roster soon!