National History of The United Way

1887In Denver, religious leaders founded the Charity Organization Society, the first United Way, which conducted a single fundraising campaign for 22 agencies.
1888The first United Way campaign in Denver raised $21,700.
1894Charitable institutions became exempt from the first federal act that imposed a tax on all corporations organized for profit.
1911 The National Association of Societies for Organizing Charity was formed to help social agencies cooperate and share information (eventually became United Way of America)
1913 The nation’s first modern Community chest was born in Cleveland, where a program for allocating campaign funds was developed.
1918Executives of 12 fundraising federations meet in Chicago and form the American Association for Community Organizations, the predecessor to United Way of America.
1887-1969Over 2,100 communities established local organizations to raise and allocate funds to local agencies. These organizations were known as Community Fund, Community Chest, United Appeal, Torch Fund, Joint Appeal, Red Feather appeal, and many other names.
1940The first payroll deduction campaigns were started in Detroit, Michigan.
1963 Los Angeles, California becomes the first community to formally adopt the United Way.
1969A movement started to change all local Community Chests, United Funds, United Appeals, to United Way of HOMETOWN.
1970United community funds & Councils of America, a trade association for United Ways, changed it’s name to United Way of America.