Jimi Hendrix Clara McCarty Captain Robert Gray Anna Louise StrongAnna Louise Strong Bailey Gatzert Home WWII Women Pilots
Search Encyclopedia
Facebook
Advanced Search
Donate Now! Book Store Featured Eassy Sponsor of the Week
Home About Us Contact Us Education Bookstore Tourism Advanced Search
6808 HistoryLink.org essays now available      
Donate Subscribe

Shortcuts

Libraries
Cyberpedias Cyberpedias
Timeline Essays Timeline Essays
People's Histories People's Histories

Selected Collections
Cities & Towns Cities & Towns
County Thumbnails Counties
Biographies Biographies
Interactive Cybertours Interactive Cybertours
Slide Shows Slideshows
Public Ports Public Ports
Audio & Video Audio & Video

Research Shortcuts

Map Searches
Alphabetical Search
Timeline Date Search
Topic Search

Features

Book of the Fortnight
Audio/Video Enhanced
History Bookshelf
Klondike Gold Rush Database
Duvall Newspaper Index
Wellington Scrapbook

More History

Washington FAQs
Washington Milestones
Honor Rolls
Columbia Basin
Everett
Olympia
Seattle
Spokane
Tacoma
Walla Walla
Roads & Rails

Timeline Library

< Browse to Previous Essay | Browse to Next Essay >

Rainier Club, Seattle's preeminent private club, admits first African American and first woman in 1978.

HistoryLink.org Essay 2962 : Printer-Friendly Format

In 1978, the Rainier Club, previously an exclusive (white) gentleman's club, admits to membership for the first time an African American and a woman. Luther Carr, a prominent black contractor, becomes a member on July 25, 1978. Judge Betty Binns Fletcher (1923-2012), the first woman to head the Seattle-King County Bar Association, becomes the first woman member on August 22, 1978. The first Japanese American member, Saburo Nishimuro, had been admitted on November 25, 1966.

Luther Carr's membership required an amendment to club bylaws, which had permitted any 10 members to bar a nominated person from becoming a member. When Carr was first nominated, 10 members acted on their racial prejudice and protested his membership. Thus, in accordance with bylaws, he was automatically blackballed.

The Board of Trustees issued a stinging rebuke, and asked the membership to amend the bylaws. The club manager at the time, Ellis Jones, remembers that "it was a very quiet meeting. The vote was unanimous and there was no hullabaloo" (Crowley, 59).

The Rainier Club is located in a historic building in downtown Seattle at 820 4th Avenue. It was founded in 1888 by Judge Thomas Burke (1849-1925) and other civic leaders, and remains a thriving, and now, non-discriminatory institution for meeting, networking, and dining.

Sources:
Walt Crowley, The Rainier Club, 1888-1988 (Seattle: The Rainier Club, 1988), 57-59.
Note: This essay was updated on October 25, 2012.


Travel through time (chronological order):
< Browse to Previous Essay | Browse to Next Essay >

Related Topics: Organizations | Women's History | Black Americans |

Licensing: This essay is licensed under a Creative Commons license that encourages reproduction with attribution. Credit should be given to both HistoryLink.org and to the author, and sources must be included with any reproduction. Click the icon for more info. Please note that this Creative Commons license applies to text only, and not to images. For more information regarding individual photos or images, please contact the source noted in the image credit.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License


Major Support for HistoryLink.org Provided By: The State of Washington | Patsy Bullitt Collins | Paul G. Allen Family Foundation | Museum Of History & Industry | 4Culture (King County Lodging Tax Revenue) | City of Seattle | City of Bellevue | City of Tacoma | King County | The Peach Foundation | Microsoft Corporation, Other Public and Private Sponsors and Visitors Like You




Rainier Club (Kirtland Cutter, 1904), Seattle
Courtesy MOHAI


 
Home About Us Contact Us Education Bookstore Tourism Advanced Search

HistoryLink.org is the first online encyclopedia of local and state history created expressly for the Internet. (SM)
HistoryLink.org is a free public and educational resource produced by History Ink, a 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt corporation.
Contact us by phone at 206.447.8140, by mail at Historylink, 1411 4th Ave. Suite 803, Seattle WA 98101 or email admin@historylink.org