The February 19, 1897 records in the Broome County Clerk’s Office indicate that five gentlemen of German background filed a certificate of incorporation pursuant to the Membership Corporation Law of the state of New York. The name of the corporation was Germania Maennerchor of Binghamton, N.Y.
The going was sometimes rough in the early years, but finally in January, 1923, a group of nineteen musicians and members gathered and made a motion to start a club under the name of “Deutscher Gesang Und Music Club.” In 1927, an application for membership to the Central New York Sängerbund was filed. Our first director was Adele Winkler, and in June, 1928, our society attended our first Saengerfest in Schenectady, and in October of that year, a motion was made and carried to change the name of the club to Germania Männerchor.
Our only problem was finding a place to practice singing. Meetings had been held in private homes until a member named John Winkler made a suggestion to build out his chicken coop since he wasn’t using it any more. This worked out well and there was plenty of room for singing and band rehearsals. In December, 1928, the wives of the members decided to start the Ladies Section of the Germania Männerchor. In October, 1930, the Germania Maennerchor bought the property on which our Club House sits today. 1931 was a very busy year. A small building was erected and then the next year, a porch was added and the following year, a well was dug.
Since then, the Germania Männerchor has been a member of the New York State Sängerbund, and we have competed in the singing competitions and performed at various functions. In June, 1998, the men and ladies auxiliary were merged and are now known as the Binghamton German Club (incorporated as Germania Maennerchor). Dr. Michael Kinney was our Choral Director for over 25 years. More recently, Randy Messing directed the chorus. Our current Choral Director is Bill Snyder.