Recent Comments

Recent Posts




Women's Club of Columbia, 1703 Blossom Sreet: 1940 (built)   15 comments

Posted at 5:15 pm in Uncategorized

Today's bonus post comes from commenter Dennis, as do the photos:

After driving past a million times and promising myself to take some pictures before USC bulldozes it, I finally stopped and got some photos of the old Woman's Club building at 1703 Blossom St., next to their tennis center.

As you can see it is slowly moldering away. It has achieved a wonderful haunted house feel, and I'm sure it has a thousand stories and a few ghosts. I don't think it's used for anything currently. For years it was a little rundown but still rented a lot for fraternity and sorority parties. I've been to several wedding receptions and parties there.

It's basically one big room with a kitchen on the end, and some tiny side rooms. I peeked in one years ago and there was a wonderful, poster-sized b&w photo in an old frame showing the club in its heyday, with dozens of stylish ladies wearing their best hats and pearls at long banquet tables, taken in the 1940s I'd guess. I tried hard to track down who to ask about getting my hands on it but never could figure out who to talk to.

The Woman's Club of Columbia is still around and very active. They now meet here:

Columbia City Council records show that they were given permission and "encouragement" to put up a plaque explaining the history of the old Blossom St. place. It hasn't happened yet. The building has been nominated to go on the federal List of National Historic Places, but I don't think that has happened yet either. It's currently owned by USC and valued at $700,00 but I'm sure the acre and a half lot is worth a lot more than that. And the huge oak trees are priceless.

UPDATE 8 November 2009: Added '1940' to post title.

Written by ted on November 6th, 2009

Tagged with , ,

15 Responses to 'Women's Club of Columbia, 1703 Blossom Sreet: 1940 (built)'

Subscribe to comments with RSS

  1. With some rehabilitation and sound proofing, that space would make one heck of a recording studio. I suspect the nearby students, especially the ones wandering home from 5-Points on a Friday night, would make it nearly impossible to get through a take without someone banging on the door; that might be part of the fun. You never know what genius may show up half-snookered and ready to roll. A good "soft" name for it would be Blossom Belle Recorders.

    Thank you Dennis for the pictures and story, I've always wondered about that building.

    Michael Taylor

    6 Nov 09 at 6:17 pm

  2. ted - tax record says the building was built in 1940, so I guess you could put that date in the headline.



    7 Nov 09 at 9:43 am

  3. I hope it doesn't get 'dozed....and your right about the trees, they are priceless. Thank you for the pictures and research.


    7 Nov 09 at 12:49 pm

  4. The Woman's Club was a great social spot when I was growing up in Columbia. It was the site of lots of parties and receptions as was mentioned; when I was a young adult, my father's retirement party was held here and later, I remember wonderful Pub Night events at the Women's Club sponsored by CMFA. I even won the darts tournament one year! And, did you know, there is a replica of the Statue of LIberty in the yard? That is, unless it's been removed from the site.


    22 Jun 10 at 11:17 pm

  5. Becky - the statue is in a tiny triangular park in front of Christopher Towers, about a half block away from the Women's Club. Maybe it was moved there? I remember some group having it restored.


    23 Jun 10 at 6:39 am

  6. Dennis: Yep, appears the statue was moved. But not too far away!


    24 Jun 10 at 5:27 pm

  7. This building was where I took ballroom dancing lessons in middle school. Mrs Sloan was our teacher. It was a great way to meet girls, even though they were a head taller than me. Think of Long Duck Dong and his date dancing in "Sixteen Candles", and you get the picture. It was quite nice.


    25 May 11 at 1:00 pm

  8. Wonder if this building is rentable ?

    Brenda dixon

    16 Aug 16 at 5:46 pm

  9. Thank you for the walk down memory lane....I had Mrs. Sloan as well in the 1960's. I can see the boys lined up along one wall in front of their chairs and we girls in our pretty party dresses and white gloves along the other. Fond memories of dancing to the Monster Mash and learning how to Fox Trot.
    Haunting to see the old place again. Many lives passed through those doors and it looks like some are still there. Does anybody see the spirit orbs dancing in the ballroom?
    Thank you for the walk back to those days......


    4 Jan 18 at 5:12 pm

  10. Janet, your description of the kids lined up along the walls is exactly like an episode of "Leave It To Beaver" I watched the other morning. It must have been a nationwide phenomena.

    Joe Shlabotnik

    4 Jan 18 at 10:51 pm

  11. Joe, you are right about the Leave It To Beaver episode SO3E21 with " Mrs. Prescott's Dancing School ". ( I had to research the segment for accuracy .) Beaver and the boys were a bit too young for Mrs. Sloan's as you had to be in 7th or 8th grade. Also, the boys did not have to wear white gloves, just the girls, and yes, the boys hated it as much as Beaver did. We girls loved dressing up to dance with the boys, even if they were a head shorter, as Palmettopanic noted above. Palmettopanic, I was there in '62 and '63. Were you in one of my classes?


    5 Jan 18 at 12:20 pm

  12. Hi Janet. No, I was there in the '82 and '83. Most of the guys in my group liked going to meet the girls, just not the coat and tie wearing part. : )


    9 Jan 18 at 10:46 am

  13. Hello Palmetto,
    Here we are after all these years talking about Mrs. Sloan and the influence she had on our young lives within the walls of this beautiful, abandoned building. It has been over 50 years for me and 30 years for you, but, you and I are still looking back fondly on our youth and the time we spent with Mrs. Sloan.
    I don't believe that 50 years from now I will have the honor of being remembered as influencing so many young lives positively.
    Mrs. Sloan, wherever you are, your legacy lives on, and, thank you.


    10 Jan 18 at 9:39 am

  14. Dear friends of the late Rachel Haynie are completing a book that she was writing about Mrs. Sloan's Dancing School. Could we have permission to use the pix of the Woman's Club and the empty room where Mrs. Sloan taught classes. What is the citation that we use for the pictures? We also like the comments two of your readers made about Mrs. Sloan and would like to use those as well. Thanks.

    Pat McNeely

    30 Sep 18 at 11:37 pm

  15. Hello Pat,
    I have many fond memories of Mrs. Sloan's dancing school.
    I would like very much to buy a copy when you are published.
    Thank you, Janet Stipp

    Janet Stipp

    8 Apr 19 at 11:36 am

Leave a Reply


Recently Updated Posts