The Tacoma Home Organ Society
DEDICATED TO PROVIDING SUPPORT FOR MUSICAL PROGRAMS IN TACOMA AND PIERCE COUNTY SCHOOLS.
Sixteen people with a common interest in music and Hammond Organ ownership voted in the early 1950’s to become the “Hammond Organ Society. They were rapidly joined by others interested in music and charitable efforts. Meetings were held at 908 Broadway. The group soon took on other activities and eventually found it difficult to find a suitable hall to accommodate their expansive interests. A vote was taken to look for a property to purchase, with the results being 49 “yes” and 1 “no”.
Magically, a rundown, abandoned General Petroleum gas station appeared for sale at 2101 North 30th Street, our present site. General Petroleum was impressed with the Society’s commitment to raise funds for musical scholarships and accepted the group’s offer of $3,000. The purchase was financed by members who pledged $100.00 each, to be repaid with interest. Some members also donated $10 per month. A flurry of activities such as rummage sales, dances, and concerts raised the working capital needed for materials. Weekend parties broke cement, dug footings, laid cement blocks, wired, roofed, painted and did a total renovation of the gas station. The women shoveled, hauled, wheeled and worked alongside the men, then served a scrumptious meal.
Our grand opening in the spring of 1957 was the Sunday of the Daffodil Parade. The floats were parked in front of the building and the City provided bleachers for viewing the regatta. The building was dedicated by the Reverend Shaughnessy, with city officials in attendance. Free soft drinks were provided and organ music added to the festivities. Generous coverage by newspapers, radio and TV brought huge crowds to the event.
The clubhouse was in constant demand. Among other things, it was used for musical instruction for orphans from the “Home on the Hill”. The school district provided a school bus to transport the children to Old Town. During the holiday season the club provided food and gifts to needy families.