Skip to Content
ublogo print

University at Buffalo Libraries

Digital Collections

YMCA Buffalo Niagara collection, 1901-circa 1970s

Search/Browse the Collection

Use an asterisk * for truncation when searching. Example: music* will get music, musical, musician, etc.


The first YMCA was founded in London, England in 1844, and by 1851 the first United States YMCA was established in Boston. In 1852, the YMCA of Buffalo was started by George W. Perkins in the loft of the old Pearl Street Methodist Church. It is the second oldest YMCA in the United States. Another YMCA location was opened in Buffalo on Delaware Avenue in 1927. By 2006, several locations had opened throughout the Buffalo Niagara region.

This digital collection is about the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) of Buffalo Niagara and consists of items from 1901 to the 1970s. Materials include membership cards, summer camp scrapbook pages, advertisements, and photographs. The scrapbook depicts photographs from Camp Kawabi in Niagara Falls, NY, circa 1950s. It shows campers canoeing and participating in various outdoor activities. The photographs highlight different athletic club activities, various dinners and banquets associated with the YMCA branches, and the exteriors of several Buffalo branch locations.

Today, there are numerous YMCA locations throughout the United States and still several branches throughout the Buffalo Niagara region.