​​Our National Organizationwww.nlapw.com

The National League of American Pen Women was founded in Washington D.C., in 1897 by a group of journalists who felt there should be an organization which would include women of the press as members. By the end of its first year, when the group was incorporated, its membership included professional artists, writers and composers, just as it does today.

The League’s headquarters is a cool, turreted twenty-room mansion--the Pen Arts Building--which is a short walk from the White House. President Abraham Lincoln’s son, Robert Todd Lincoln, was its most famous resident. Today, a room in the building is devoted to League member Vinnie Ream, who created the famous sculpture of Abraham Lincoln, “Pensive Lincoln,” which stands in the Capitol Rotunda. The League’s archives, a library of books that Pen Women authors have donated, and members’ art work are also housed in “Pen Arts.”

Pen Women are welcome to stay in the building’s bedrooms for a modest fee, and many from Hawaii have enjoyed exploring the building and the historic district surrounding it.

Honolulu Pen Women

No, the Honolulu Branch of the NLAPW is not as old as its national parent, but it’s not a newcomer in Hawaii. Founded in 1924, it received its charter (#27) in 1925. Because its members met regularly even during World War II, it claims the honor of being “the oldest continuously-operating professional arts organization in Hawaii.”

The Honolulu Branch was first called the Aloha Branch because one of its purposes was to extend hospitality to visiting artists, musicians and writers. During the years when visitors to the Islands were few, the branch’s Celebrity Breakfasts were important annual events on Hawaii’s social calendar.

Our branch formed lasting ties with both the military and the libraries in Hawaii. Mrs. George S. Patton, Jr., whose husband was the famed World War II general, and Mrs. James F. Collins, wife of the commander-in-chief of the U.S. army, Pacific, were Honolulu branch members. For a time before the war, our branch president was an ex-officio member of the Friends of the Library board, and for many years, our (then annual) art show was held in the Library of Hawaii’s main building. For years, the library maintained a Pen Women’s Shelf, containing works by branch members, and a portion of our now-historic archives are housed in the University of Hawaii’s Hamilton Library.

One of Hawaii’s preeminent, and most beloved, historians, Gwenfread Allen, wrote: “Branch members from the beginning have had an outstanding record of professional achievement in their chosen fields. They have created art that has won national recognition; their books, plays and magazine articles have received wide circulation, and their music has been given great acclaim." Maintaining the
splendid records set by their predecessors, members today are continuing work in art, letters, and music, using their creative abilities for the benefit and enjoyment of others.

​​​​"The Mission of the League, a not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) corporation, is to encourage, recognize, and promote the production of creative work of professional standard in Art, Letters, and Music, and through outreach activities provide educational, creative, and professional support to members and non-members in these disciplines. The core values of the NLAPW are respect, knowledge, creation and preservation of the arts."

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​​​​​​​​national league of American pen women

Honolulu branch 

The National League of American P​en Women (NLAPW) is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) professional organization  for women artists, composers, and writers that promotes the development of creative talents of women in the  arts. Members are women who produce creative works in Arts, Letters, or Music, with over 5,000 members nation-wide.

​Honolulu Pen Women hold lively monthly luncheon meetings featuring speakers, artists and musicians, and sponsor conferences, art shows, writing competitions, seminars, and outings that further the artistic development of its members and the community. We support each others efforts and promote the arts in the wider community.  

The mission of Pen Women is to encourage, recognize, and promote the production of creative work of professional standard in Art, Letters, and Music, and to promote and preserve creative arts in our community. Through outreach activities we provide educational, creative, and professional support in these disciplines. ​                  

​For specific details on how to become a member, visit nlapw.org/how-to-join/.  Membership is open to women who are published authors, composers of original music, photographers, and other artists whose works have  been in at least three juried shows. Click here for more information. To join contact  
kathryn.takara@gmail.com  or sabrarae@icloud.com.​ ​      

luncheon meetings are generally held on the first Wednesday of each month. Our next luncheon meeting will be September 4, 2019. Meetings are not held during summer (June, July, August). In December, the luncheon meeting is replaced by a fabulous holiday party. Throughout the year, various outings (Delectable Detours) offer opportunities to collectively enjoy and support  restaurants, plays, concerts, and other cultural events in our community. Every odd-numbered year we hold an art show. In even-numbered years, Pen Women organize and sponsor a writers' conference in Spring, and also a writing competition.