Seattle Library Association elects officers on June 3, 1873.

  • By Greg Lange
  • Posted 8/13/1999
  • Essay 1624

On June 3, 1873, the Seattle Library Association elects officers. Thirty three of the 169 members of the organization meet in the association’s Reading Room located in the Yesler Building at the southwest corner of Mill Street (Yesler Way) and Commercial Street (1st Avenue S).

The previous week the library association gave an annual report of the organization. There were about 169 members including 27 with lifetime memberships. Dues were about $3.00 for one year, $5.00 for two years, and $30.00 for a lifetime membership. Of the 278 books in the library, 65 were purchased in the previous year. The library also subscribed to 34 newspapers and periodicals from the United States and Canada (see below for a complete list). Of the $1,514 balance in funds, the association had just allocated $800 for book purchases.

Five of the six races for library positions were quite close. The members elected D. [Dexter] Horton (15 votes) president by just two votes over G. F. Whitworth, while A. [Arthur] A. Denny polled 5 votes. For vice president, L. P. Smith (16 votes) defeated G. F. Whitworth (12 votes), H. A. Atkins (4 votes), and A. A. Denny (1 vote). Sarah Yesler (1822-1887), whose support of libraries would continue for the rest of her life, was elected treasurer by a wide margin -- more than 70 percent of votes cast. The remaining races were decided by one or two votes.

The Seattle Library Association received the following newspapers and periodicals:

Local Newspapers and Periodicals

  • British Colonist (Victoria, BC)
  • Intelligencer (Seattle)
  • Puget Sound Courier
  • Puget Sound Dispatch (Seattle)
  • Olympia Transcript
  • Port Townsend Argus
  • Puget Sound Express

Out of Territory Newspapers and Peridocials

  • Albany Law Journal
  • American Agriculturist
  • Arkansas Republican
  • Chicago Interior
  • Chicago Legal News
  • Cincinnati Enquirer
  • Dacotah Republican
  • Derby Transcript
  • Duluth Minnesotian
  • Florida New Era
  • Fort Smith (Ark.) New Era
  • Galveston News
  • Harrisburg Telegraph
  • Hearth and Home
  • Idaho Statesman
  • Kansas City Journal of Commerce
  • Leavenworth Commercial
  • Meridian Gazette
  • Montreal Gazette
  • New Hampshire Gazette
  • New Jersey Herald
  • New York World
  • Occident (San Francisco)
  • Presbyterian
  • Progressive Age
  • Toronto Leader
  • The West (San Francisco)

Following is a list of 20 of the 33 members who attended the election:

  • H. A. Atkins
  • Edw H. Brown
  • S. F. Coombs
  • A. A. Denny
  • Mr. Dinsmore
  • Mrs. Gilliam
  • D. Horton
  • O. Jacobs
  • F. H. Lamb
  • A. Mackintosh
  • Mrs. A. Mackintosh
  • Frank Matthias
  • Jas. McNaught
  • J. R. Robbins
  • Mrs. J. R. Robbins
  • L. P. Smith
  • Mrs. Dr. Weed
  • G. F. Whitworth
  • H. L. Yesler
  • Mrs. H. L. Yesler


The Weekly Intelligencer (Seattle), May 31, 1873, p. 3; June 7, 1873, p. 3.

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