Seigler, Marie Samuella Cromer | South Carolina Public Radio

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“S” is for Seigler, Marie Samuella Cromer [1882-1964]. Educator. Girl’s club founder. In 1909, Seigler, an Abbeville County native, heard a representative of the U.S. Department of Agriculture extoll the virtue of the Boy’s Corn Clubs of America. This catalyzed her hopes of doing something to broaden the vision and self-confidence of rural girls. Within a few months she had founded the Aiken County Girls’ Tomato Club, the first such group in the nation, and was attracting favorable attention from government and philanthropic groups. By 1913, some twenty thousand girls in the southern states were participating. After marriage, Seigler moved into the background, but the movement continued to grow—and eventually evolved into the 4-H Clubs. In 1953, at the national 4-H Camp, President Eisenhower honored Marie Samuella Cromer Seigler for her role as a founder of 4-H.