Negroes Promote Candidacy of Bush for Hall
By Lane Smith, Seattle Times, October 23, 1967
A historical lesson has become a black power
cause for the Seattle
Congress of Racial Equality (CORE).
CORE, under the leadership of Mrs. Edward White,
a Negro mother, is
promoting the candidacy of George Washington
Bush for the State Hall of
Fame. Bush, a Negro, was among the first
American settlers in this
A program depicting the life and contributions
to this state by the
Negro pioneer will be presented at 8 PM Friday
at Garfield High
School. Admission is free. Mrs.
Walter Olsen, librarian at
the State Capitol Museum in Olympia, who helped
Mrs. White and CORE
prepare a booklet on Bush, will speak.
Mrs. White is convinced that Negro children need
a cultural hero such
as Bush with whom to identify.
The Bush project developed from a class on Negro
history begun by Mrs.
White under CORE auspices last January.
“I was concerned about the lack of knowledge by
many central area
youngsters about their cultural heritage.” Mrs.
White said. “They
have never been told what contributions Negro
people have made in this
Interest in the classes focused on Bush who left
Missouri with his wife
and five sons in May 1844.
Bush and friends moved into Washington, then
territory claimed by both
the United States and Great Britain. They
settled on what now is
Bush Prairie, near Olympia.
Widely respected, Bush was known as a man who
shared food and
possessions with both Indians and white
settlers. In 1854 a
special Act of Congress was passed granting Bush
his original claim of
Several years ago a bill was introduced in the
Bush for the State Hall of Fame but the bill was
not acted on.
Each state is allowed to place two statues in
the Hall of Fame in
Washington D.C. Washington is represented only
by Marcus Whitman.
CORE is at the break-even point in the sale of
its book on Bush.
Mrs. White went in debt $850 for publishing
costs and now has recovered
Sales included 500 copies to the Catholic
Archdiocese of Seattle, 315
to the Seattle School Board, 200 to the Central
Area Motivation Program
to the Seattle Opportunities Industrialization
Center. The book
also available at the Yesler Branch Library and
can be purchased at
“This is an example of black power because it
means race price,
self-help and do-it-yourselfism,” Mrs. White
“Our Negro children, particularly those who are
involved in the racial
transfer programs, need to know and have others
know the contributions
of their forebears.”
“A lot of our children are making a great
personal sacrifice to go out
of their neighborhood to get a quality
education. Some of them
get only abuse for doing it.”
Mrs. White’s daughter, Joan, 12, is a transfer
student at Blaine Junior
“If nothing else, I would like to see a statue
erected of George
Washington Bush at Garfield High School,” Mrs.