April 2012 Bar Bulletin
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Protest and the Profession in a 'Fair' Decade

 

This article is excerpted from From Profanity Hill, the story of the King County Bar Association, by Marc Lampson.

Perhaps more than any other period of time, the decade of the 1960s was a watershed for new ideals and responsibilities, shaping the nation's social, political, intellectual, artistic, financial, and natural environment.

For many, the 1960s began in Seattle in the same spirit that was afoot throughout the United States; with enthusiasm and with what would later appear to be innocence and naiveté. The newly elected president of the United States embodied that spirit for many: John Kennedy was young, charismatic, and handsome, and he espoused a life of vigor and engagement. The dark days of the Second World War, the Korean War, and the McCarthy era were disappearing in the rearview mirror of the big-finned automobile. In this atmosphere, Seattle built and produced a futuristic world's fair to celebrate the ascendancy of optimism: Century 21.

The New Seattle-King County Bar Association

The Seattle-King County Bar Association (SKCBA) reflected this vigor: it had a new hyphenated name, a new organizational structure, and a new publication, the Seattle-King County Bar Bulletin. Though one volume of the Seattle Bar Bulletin had been published in 1957–58, under the presidency of Charles Horowitz and the editorship of Betty Fletcher and Louis Pepper,1 it was not until December 1960 that the publication began to publish regularly. For the next three decades, up until the present, the Bar Bulletin has published the news of the Association and the bar generally.2

The Bar Association soon became involved in new, more commercial arenas. Its board appointed a committee to participate in the World's Fair, the "Century 21" exposition.3 Several Seattle attorneys, including many Bar Association members, were already involved. William Goodloe was one of the first. In the early 1950s he began to promote the fair, and as a state senator in the mid-fifties he wrote and co-sponsored legislation authorizing the Seattle World's Fair. As the fair became more of a reality, he was appointed to chair the planning commission.

A major question arose regarding the exact location of the World's Fair, and Goodloe appointed several people to a subcommittee on sites, but that group had difficulty reaching a decision. The thorny issue was not resolved until the Seattle City Council created the Civic Center Advisory Committee. That committee was to develop ideas about acquiring land for and building a civic center around the Civic Auditorium on Denny, and that site became the site of the World's Fair as well. The committee's chair was a longtime Seattle Bar Association member, Harold S. Shefelman, "a stocky little attorney of much ingenuity and experience," as Murray Morgan described him in his book on the fair.4


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