The Merry Makers Club is the oldest social club in Columbus owned and operating in the African American community.  Founded in 1926, The Merry Makers Club has helped generations of people living in Franklin County.


The central mission of the Merry Makers Club, is to unite in a bond of fellowship, civic minded persons of culture, patriotism and a high sense of honor.  The Merry Makers Club promotes the social, intellectual and moral welfare of its members and the community in which we live.  The Merry Makers Club raises, strengthens, and distributes permanent charitable funds to benefit Franklin County and the surrounding region.


The key values governing the Merry Makers Club’s growth and development include the following:

  • Operating in accordance with the highest standards in all relationships with members, member families, and the community.
  • A climate that encourages a close brotherhood and fraternity among the members.
  • A climate that encourages charitable contribution and social responsibility.
  • A positive image and strong influence within the community in which we live.

Merry Makers Social and Economic Justice Statement

The year was 1926. Racial tensions were running high on Columbus’ east side. A fight broke out in the halls of East High School as several proud young black men protested against the injustice of being denied admittance to their school’s social events which were reserved exclusively for their white classmates. This courageous group was the genesis of a brotherhood that would stand tall for justice and integrity for generations of Black men who have followed. This is the story of the Merry Makers Club, Inc.

The racial struggle faced by our founding Merry Makers ninety-four years ago has painstakingly continued throughout time.  Recently, to our horror, we all witnessed the 8 minutes and 46 seconds on May 25, 2020 where George Floyd’s life was brutally taken.  Incredibly, from this moment of darkness, beams of light are beginning to shine to ensure that Mr. Floyd’s tragic death was not in vain.

A worldwide movement of change led by young people of good will is arising, intensely demanding that all facets of the pernicious, systemic, institutionalized racism which infects our nation heretofore be dismantled and abolished, once and for all. The Merry Makers stand ready to continue the anti-racism work started by our Founders. Our strategic actions will include voter registration and education, as well as fundraising in support of local efforts.


Black Lives Matter and we are committed to the journey for racial and economic justice in all communities around the world!


At our December meeting, Eric Gray, left, David Harrison, President of Columbus State Community College, Robert Yengo, 2019 recipient of The Merry Makers Club Scholarship at Columbus State, and Harvey Brownlee hold up a $5,000 check presented to the college.

The money will to added to an existing scholarship fund The Club has at The College bringing the total endowed value to $58,000.

Our goal is to grow the endowed value to $300,000 to financially assist more African American male students to achieve their educational goals at the College.  The Merry Makers Club Foundation is actively pursuing partners in this endeavor.  Please contact us at ericgray1895@gmail.com if you would like to help.  Without you,  many student would not be able to overcome the financial obstacles to receiving their higher education.

Message from Robert Yengo…….

“I am honored that you have reached out to me to be the recipient of this scholarship.  I intend to use the scholarship for my upcoming semester at Columbus State for my engineering math and physics course.  The impact of this scholarship is large on my academic career as my work and class life balance will shift in my favor to graduate on time.

By awarding me the Merry Makers Scholarship, I wish to continue to create new connections with high minded and forward thinkers in Columbus and contribute to volunteer causes that benefit the community.  I hope I can accomplish this and follow the Merry Makers core values in conduct, social responsibilities, and creating positive and strong influences in Franklin County.  I find it especially important to create this image for others because of the severe lack of African American students pursuing degrees in technology and engineering roles.  I feel that it is my responsibility after completing school to contribute to programs that encourage students of color to receive degrees in the sciences and mathematics in Ohio and act as a role model for these students.”


Total Number of Scholarships Awarded


Total Scholarship Dollars Endowed



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