Scope and Contents:
This collection contains records of the Urbana Association of Commerce, mainly the correspondence of George Chapin, the Association's managing secretary during the late 1920s and early 1930s. The correspondence deals with reactions to the Depression, the activities and mission of the Better Business Bureaus, and a great sensitivity to statements, perceptions, and slights regarding Urbana's position relative to its larger neighbor. Other subjects include maintaining membership, soliciting new corporate and individual members, and lining up speakers and entertainers for the many meetings. The collection also contains meeting minutes of the Association, documenting the activities of over 30 committees, including the Secret Committee of 200 which was formed in 1932 to "curb gossip mongers of Urbana" who were undermining confidence in area banks. The collection also contains some of Chapin's personal correspondence and records and correspondence for the Urbana Rotary Club, the Community Chest, the Illinois Commercial Secretaries Association, and the Urbana Golf and Country Club.