GFWC members have long been advocates for the preservation of America’s historic landscapes, buildings, and cultural artifacts.
- Phoebe Apperson Hearst, a member of the Century Club of San Francisco and GFWC’s first treasurer (1890-1892), served on the board of Mount Vernon from 1889 to 1918. Her vision and financial assistance helped safely electrify and accurately furnish the home of America’s first president, as well as preserve the property’s fragile shoreline.
- In 1916, GFWC advocated for the creation of the National Park Service, whose mission is to preserve not only natural resources, but also historic buildings and landmarks in hundreds of communities across America.
- In the 1950s, GFWC members raised more than $200,000 to restore and refurnish a chamber in Independence Hall and passed a resolution to protect Mount Vernon’s endangered historic overview.
Since 1922, GFWC members have helped preserve their own historic Headquarters, which is located in what the National Park Service describes as “one of the most varied and architecturally intact blocks” in the Dupont Circle neighborhood.
GFWC's Women’s History and Resource Center manages the preservation of historic structures and collections, and provides assistance to clubs interested in tackling preservation projects.
The WHRC preserves GFWC’s historic archives, art, and artifacts according to professional standards and monitors the historic rooms and exhibit areas to protect museum-quality artwork and furnishings. Preservation measures are balanced with efforts to provide welcome and access to GFWC members and guests. Several years ago, the National Endowment for the Humanities awarded GFWC a Preservation Assistance Grant to help create immediate and long-range plans for improving the preservation of GFWC’s historic structures and collections.