In partnership with the Maine Memory Network Maine Memory Network

Portland Press Herald Glass Negative Collection

National Federation of Business and Professional Women's Clubs

Power of Potential
Power of PotentialView the Maine Women's Business Convention Slideshow

Delegates from the National Federation of Business and Professional Women's Clubs (NFBPW), also known as B.P.W. Club, visited Portland in July 1925 for the annual convention. Many guests arrived over the weekend by train at the Grand Trunk Station on India Street. The convention was held at Portland City Hall (Merrill Auditorium), and officially began on July 13, 1925.

By 1925, the NFBPWC was an established, yet new organization. Founded July 1919 – eight months before the 19th Amendment allocated voting rights for many American women – its mission then and now is to develop women’s leadership potential and advocate for women in the work place. From suffrage to the glass ceiling, the NFBPWC continues to empower and mentor professional women.

Within a year of its formation in 1920, the Portland Business and Professional Women's Club had more than 500 members. By 1922, the club had 655 members and was the largest in the country in proportion to its city's population (about 70,000). It sought to promote and assist their activities and to promote ethical business dealings. Maine led the eastern U.S. in the formation of BPW clubs for some six years in the 1920s.