History of the Druze in America 1948 to 1961
American Druze Society
1948. Washington, D.C.
After that convention, The First Mihrajan of the Al-Bayan, the organization took on the name of The Annual Convention of the American Druze Society. The Second Convention of the American Druze Society the following year, 1948, was held in Washington, D.C. under the leadership President Mahmoud Sadak and Vice-President Dallal David from Washington, D.C., and Polly Silman from Saginaw, Michigan was the chairperson . (The above information is from the Memoirs of Nafe Katter, Sr. MY COLLECTION at the Bentley Historical Library at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan.)
1949. Detroit, MI
Detroit, Michigan was the site for the Third Convention of the American Druze Society on August 8, 9, and 10th in 1949. The conventions began as just three day conventions. The Third Convention of the American Druze Society in Detroit, Michigan was sponsored by Branch #2 El-Bakaurat Ed-Dirziyat. The President of the American Druze Society was Edward Igram from Flint, Michigan, and the officers were , Maxine Dahook from Saginaw, Jimmy Sams from Bay City, Kenneth Katter from Saginaw, Eddie Igram from Flint, Marian Rogers from Saginaw, Eleanor Katter Hamady from Saginaw - then Flint, Hamad Bomorro from Flint, Sidney Modad from Detroit, and Mabel Mullin from Detroit. The Honor Chairman was Michael Hamady from Flint.
1950. Richmond, Virginia
The President of the American Druze Society and Chairperson was George Rafey from Hopewell, Virginia. There are no other records.
1951. Cedar Rapids, Iowa
The President of the American Druze Society and Chairperson was Dr. Eddie Richards. There are no other records.
1952. Cleveland, Ohio
Cleveland, Ohio was the site for the Sixth Annual Convention of the American Druze Society on June 30th, July 1st and 2nd, 1952 at Hotel Carter, Prospect Avenue at East 9th Street. The President of the American Druze Society and Chairperson of the Convention was Fred Mullen, and Norman Shaar the Vice President. The officers were: Mae Richards, Secretary and Treasurer Mabel Mullin, Corresponding Secretary, Eddie Richards, Sergeant at Arms, Floyd Saley, Art Editor Fred Mullen in his welcome message said: “ We, the convention committee of 1952, extend to you our heartiest welcome to the City of Cleveland. It’s convention time in Cleveland, Ohio. To each we give a key to the City of cities. We want you to use it through these coming hours of many enjoyments that are offered. Unless we help to bring joy and laughter into the lives of others, we are entitled to very little fun ourselves. Our hats are off to you and the door shall always remain open - for you, one and all, to join in making this biggest convention ever.
The program was full of joy and happiness. It included Luncheon, Picnic at Rocky River Reservation, Berea, Ohio, Sightseeing tour of Cleveland, Square Dance, Syrian Entertainment, Semi-formal Dance and the Annual Banquet.
1953. Dallas, Texas
The President of the Society was Mr. Azzet Joseph and the Convention Chairperson was Mr. Polly Silman. There are no other records.
1954. Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C., was the site of the eighth Annual Convention of the American Druze Society on June 28th, June 29th and June 30 at the Sheraton Park Hotel. The President of the Society was Jim Silman Jr. and the convention Chairperson was Polly Silman. Officers: Mona Alley, Delal David, Nadine Silman, Norman Akel. Committee members: Selma Sadak, Jimmy Silman, Bashir Aridi, Mrs. George Slaem, Braheem Choukier. Guest speaker: Dr. Farid Zeineddine, Syrian Ambassador.
1955. Charleston, West Virginia
The President of the American Druze Society was Mickey Sanjid and the convention Chairperson was Bill Hamady. There are no other records.
1956. Detroit, Michigan
Detroit, Michigan was the site of the Tenth Annual Convention of the American Druze Society on June 25th, June 26th and June 27, 1956 at the at Hotel Fort Shelby on West Lafayette at First Street. The President of the Society was Roger Mullin and Vice President was Grant Hamady. The officers were: Julie Mullen, Secretary-Treasurer, Fadwa Shibley, Corresponding Secretary, Nafe Bomorro, and Kamel Kasem was Master of Ceremonies. Other Committee members were: Sidney Modad, Sam Albert, Helen Dow, Helen Igram, Jemila Salamy, Mouner Kasem, Fred Gazaley Malakie Fayad, Fred Mullen, Advisors: Jack Hamady, Sam Amin.
The Detroit Convention Committee, dedicated the 1956 program book in the memory of William Igram who chaired the 1949 Convention. Monday, June 25th, the conventioneer gathered for a luncheon. The program included a tour of the Ford Motor Company, Picnic at Belle Island, Moonlight Cruise on Lake St. Claire, Business meeting, Square Dance, Arabic Entertainment.
Michael Hamady from Flint, Michigan wrote in the program booklet of the Tenth Annual Convention in 1956, “ I regret very much that because of ill health, I am unable to attend your convention, but I assure you that I am with you in spirit. This convention has the most commendable purpose of bringing together the younger members of our people so that they become better acquainted and join forces in working towards becoming better citizens of our great United States. I am heartily in accord with the purpose and work and wish you the best of success in all your activities. My best wishes to you one and all.” The Convention Booklet dedication was to the late Mr. William Igram of Detroit, Michigan.
1957. Atlantic City, New Jersey
The President of the Society was Jim Silman Jr. and the convention was chaired by Delal David. The only information found concerning that convention was from Mr. Silman. He mentioned that all had lots of fun, but unfortunately low attendance.
1958. Richmond, Virginia.
Richmond, Virginia was the site of the twelfth Annual Convention of the American Druze Society on June 22nd, June 23rd and 25th at Hotel Jefferson. The president of the Society and the convention chairperson was George Rafey. Officers were: Eddie Richards, Jameel Ameen, Edna Joseph, Joe Nappa. It was supported by many branches of the Bakourats.
1959. Washington, D.C.
The convention was held at Woodner Hotel. The President of the Society was Jim Silman, Jr. and was Chaired by Edward Richards. Again the comments of the Jim Silman, Jr.: “It was a huge success with a huge turnout.” There is no other record.
1960. Charleston, West Virginia
The Fourteenth Annual Convention of the American Druze Society was held from June 19 through June 21, 1960 at Richmond, VA. The President of the Society and the Convention Chairperson was William Hamady. There are no other records.
The successful conventions became more and more popular each year, and Druzes throughout the United States, as well as in other countries began to know of its existence and even attend the conventions. The convention was hailed by those great Druze leaders who had so diligently worked toward the success of its continuity
1961. Flint, Michigan
The fifteenth Annual Convention of the American DRuze Society was held at the Duran Hotel from June 19 through June 21, 1961. The President of the Society and J. Raymond Najar was the Vice-President. Officers were: Nadia Abraham, Secretary - Treasurer, Madeline Hamady, Corresponding Secretary, Hamad Bomorro , Sergeant at Arms. Advisors: Robert M. Hamady, Jack A. Hamady, Nafe Katter, Ernie Mullen, Fred Sefa, Jim Silman, Khalil Wahbey. The Convention was chaired by Roy. R. Hamady Committee Chairmen: Nafe Bomorro, Joan Sefa, Roger Albee, Jim Silman, Sr., Lilian Sefa, Helen Dow, Fred Sefa, Hamad Bomorro, Nafe Bomorro, Nora Wahbey, Malakie Fayad, Joe Nappa, Jack Hamady, Joe Sefa. The program included an Early Birds Party, Welcoming Luncheon, Picnic at the Flushing Park, Flushing, Michigan, Brunch and Business Meeting and Annual Banquet.