On February 17, 1894, Mrs. Rees Daniels and 27 friends found the Seattle branch of the Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA). Within 10 months, the organization has 100 members. By 1896, the group will have "instituted a field for night work" and "held entertainments and sociables" (Bagley).
The original YWCA occupied rooms in the former Burke Building (site of the Henry M. Jackson Federal Office Building). It soon relocated to larger quarters in the Shorey Building at 3rd Avenue and Columbia Street and hired its first secretary, Ella Devoe. Members and officers of Seattle, Tacoma, and University branches held the first state YMCA convention in Seattle on December 7, 1894.
Thomas W. Prosch, "A Chronological History of Seattle From 1850 to 1897," typescript dated 1900-1901, Northwest Collection, University of Washington Library, Seattle, 441; Mildred Andrews, Seattle Women: A Legacy of Community Development (Seattle: YWCA, 1984), 25-29; Clarence B. Bagley, History of Seattle, (Chicago-Seattle: S.J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1916), 496., Polk's Seattle City Directory, (Seattle: R.M. Polk and Co., 1985), 674.
Note: This essay was revised on February 15, 2001.
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