In 1897, the Beardsley Hotel, on the northwest corner of Hill and Neil Streets in downtown Champaign, Ill., built an annex on its west side (112 W. Hill St.). In 1917, William B. McKinley purchased the annex and made it available to the Business Women's Club of Champaign. In 1927, shortly after his death, the building was deeded to the club's successor, the Women's Town Club. For over 30 years, the Club provided individual apartments and a common living and dining room for unmarried women.
The ledger books in this collection (1927, 1937-38, 1937-40, 1937-42, and 1940-58) incompletely document the Club's expenses and its income, mainly from room rents and meals. Residents are sometimes listed by name.
In recent years, the building served as a transient hotel and a furniture store, among other uses. It has accommodated the John-Paul Buzard Pipe Organ Builders on the first two floors since 1985, and now the Women's Town Club apartments fill the upper two floors. The building became a Champaign Landmark in 1998.
Steven P. Hill gave this collection of the Women's Town Club records to the Illinois Historical Survey in 1983.