It’s no surprise that the AMCA was hard to find back then, since the Club had only about 500 members. But Cowie’s idea of local Chapters helped fuel the Club’s growth.
By late 1970, Cowie had been appointed as the AMCA’s first “Secretary of Regions,” a post that would eventually become Director of Chapters, responsible for the development and growth of the AMCA Chapter program.
“They decided I had the formula,” Cowie says, “so I got the job to organize other Chapters.”
For 1971, Cowie was able to announce the formation of a new group in Eastern Pennsylvania, the Perkiomen Chapter. This new Chapter grew out of a group of members, including Doug Strange, Bill Algeo and Doc and Bill Patt, who traveled together to AMCA meets. Doc Patt’s property near Boyertown, Pennsylvania, had served as the setting for yearly AMCA meets, and in ’71, it became the first event of the new Perkiomen Chapter.
The next spring, the President’s column in the AMCA magazine was able to note, “We begin 1972 with renewed interest through our increased membership and through the new chapters springing up all over the country.”
Art Sigal stepped down as president in 1973, and in his farewell column, he pointed to growth in a number of areas during his 11 years leading the AMCA.
“From one national club,” he wrote, “ we now have one national plus five very active chapters (St. Louis, Perkiomen, Yankee, Florida and Chief Blackhawk) and more on the boards for inclusion in the coming year.”