You are on page 7 of the 1st AA Grapevine ever printed
Copyright © The A.A. Grapevine, Inc., June 1944
A L O N G T H E M E T R O P O L I T A N C I R C U I T
BROOKLYN. Well, you know how Brooklyn is. Trees grow there, and so does A.A., but they don’t talk so much about it. We think it bears repeating that A.A . started there, right on Clinton St. in Bill’s house. There are still plenty of A.A.’s around who attended their first meeting there. Then Bill and Lois moved and for a long time there were no meetings in Brooklyn.
Two years ago last February, A.A. in New York had grown enough so that split-offs were becoming common. And there was Brooklyn, big enough all on its own to have been having meetings at the home of one of its members—now big enough to “hire a hall”, where an open meeting is held every Friday at 8:30 P.M. Closed meetings (for alcoholics only) on Wednesday evenings at the home of one of its members. Brooklyn is growing!
ELIZABETH, N. J. The group is one of many that started in South Orange. Captain Gus Steffens of the Elizabeth Police Dept. started trying to rehabilitate some local drunks known as the “Bottle Gang”. Then A.A. stepped in. Result: a growing group. The Mayor and other officials furnished a perfect meeting place gratis. Now there is also the PLAINFIELD, N. J. group – an outgrowth of Elizabeth. So A.A. grows.
FLUSHING. Formerly an integral part of the Forest Hills group, the Flushing group held its first meeting in Flushing on March 4, 1943, and has enjoyed steady and healthy growth since. There are now about 35 names on the roster. The group meets Thursday evenings at the Good Citizens League Hall, corner of Union St. and Sanford Ave. promptly at 8:30 (A.A. time).
FOREST HILLS. Among the eight or ten shaky characters who attended the first meeting of the Forest Hills Group some three years ago, an A.A. dry six months was an absolute authority on all twelve steps and a “one-yearer” was a complete phenomenon. With their small membership, there was little chance of not hearing the same speakers at least every two weeks, so these men became very well acquainted indeed.
In the two years this group had grown so there were enough Nassau and Suffolk residents to launch their own group in Hempstead. Shortly
thereafter, the Jackson Heights-Flushing folks commenced their meetings in Flushing. So 1944 sees three well-established groups on Long Island with, at a rough count, a total membership of 125, all offspring of that first little Forest Hills group, who, incidentally, along with new members still meet in the Fountain Room of the Forest Hills Inn every Monday at 8:30 P.M.
THE NEW MANHATTAN GROUP. A meeting of all Manhattanites and other A.A.s living in the Metropolitan area, but affiliated with no suburban group, was called at the 24th Street clubhouse on Thursday, April 13th. New York’s senior representatives on the Inter Group Committee presided. The chair read a comprehensive history of the expansion of A.A. in the Metropolitan area, from the time of the meetings at Bill’s house in Brooklyn until today. The Manhattan Group was then formed to co-ordinate the work of A.A. on this little Island. The members participating then elected a Chairman, to serve six months; a Deputy Chairman, to serve a year and to automatically succeed the Chairman; a Secretary, and a Treasurer. The name “Manhattan Group of Alcoholics Anonymous” was adopted–and the newest A.A. Group in this area was in business for itself.
MOUNT VERNON. Early in 1943 about fifteen members of the White Plains Group, residing in southern Westchester County, decided there was need for a Group in that area. The first meeting was held on February 4, 1943, at the Westchester Women’s Club, 110 Crary Avenue, Mount Vernon, where weekly Monday evening meetings have since been held. The Group now has eighty active members, exclusive of those on duty with the armed services and those who since have established residences elsewhere.
Recently separate open meetings were held with the Medical Associations of Mount Vernon and Yonkers.
THE NASSAU-SUFFOLK group started holding its meetings in Hempstead about a year ago. The group originally started with about 15 members from the Forest Hills group. At a closed meeting last night the Secretary reported that we have 63 members on the list. Hempstead is now meeting on Monday night, instead of Tuesday (open meetings). At the request of a Long Island Veterans’
hospital, we are sending a delegation to talk with some World War No. 2 veterans. The letter from the hospital authorities says that they have heard of A.A., and that they would like to know more about it.
Six new members have come in, in the last two weeks. Hempstead group meets at 177 Jackson St., Monday and Friday.
NORTH JERSEY NOTES. As we went to press, bright prospects of a sell-out attended the South Orange group’s spring dance which was held May 13 at the Mablewood Women’s Club. Four such social affairs a year are on the Jerseyites’ schedule. The others include an uproarious Hallowe’en party, a New Year’s Eve dinner-dance and a shindig on St. Patrick’s Day, which is always a dangerous time for ‘slips’. They also run other socials, like the all-day summer picnic out in the country and the Christmas Day reception. In recent weeks North Jersey members have spoken before several luncheon clubs, such as the South Orange Rotary, the Newark and Irving-
ton Kiwanis and the Trenton Optimist clubs. An A.A. group among the inmates of the State Reformatory for Women at Clinton, N.J., has been undertaken under the direction of the Morristown Group. The entire operation is handled by the inmates, the A.A. people assisting with literature, counsel and advice. Similarly, a group within the New Jersey State Prison at Trenton is in the experimental stage. This unit was suggested by a prisoner who wrote in to the Foundation office. Literature, etc. has been provided and North Jersey A.A. members have contacted the prison authorities with offers of help.
WHITE PLAINS. Wednesday, May 17th, marks the third anniversary of A.A. in White Plains, N. Y. The whole thing started back in 1941 when a handful of 24th Street members held a dinner meeting in Howard Johnson’s to discuss plans for a Westchester Group. We feel that the cooperation of 24th Street and the Central Office has aided immeasurably in our growth. The Grapevine should go far in this direction, too, and should be a tremendous aid in cementing metropolitan group relations. In unity there is strength! Good luck and keep ’em rolling! (We mean the presses.) Open meetings, Wednesday, 8:30 P.M., Westchester Republican Headquarters, Martine and Mamaroneck Avenues.
Copyright © The A.A. Grapevine, Inc., June 1944
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