Hawthorn Rowing Club formed in September 1877. We were one of the very first Clubs to be affiliated with Rowing Victoria and this affiliation remains today.

The Club has always operated from the part of the Yarra River that flows under Hawthorn Bridge in Bridge Road connecting the suburbs of Hawthorn and Richmond. The original Clubhouse, however, was washed away in the 1934 floods. A new "rowing shed" was erected in 1937 on the existing site and has been continually occupied as a Hawthorn Community Centre for Rowing since that date.

In 1929 the Club was successful in winning the most prestigious "Grand Challenge Cup" for Senior Eight Oared Boats at Henley. In celebration, the Hawthorn City Council granted the Club the "Freedom of the City" and gave it's permission for the Club to use the Crest of the City of Hawthorn as the Club Insignia.

Hawthorn Rowing Club is the only sporting club in Hawthorn to have this honour and Council support for the club's activities over the intervening years up to today continues to be strong.

The Club was for men only for most of its early history. This changed in the early 1980's when the club became open to both men and women. Recent successes of the Club have been in both men's and women's categories, both youth and mature age, and this has provided a fine balance in the "family life" of the club. In 1998, the members elected its first female Club Captain which was another milestone event in the history of the Club.

Annually the club acknowledges the sacrifice of member’s lives during WWI and WWII.