Gordon Clinton Photographs, 1959

Overview of the Collection

Seattle (Wash.). Mayor
Gordon Clinton Photographs
1959 (inclusive)
.4 cubic ft., ((1 box))
Collection Number
Photographs documenting Mayor Gordon Clinton's visits to Manila, Philippines; Kobe, Japan; and Taipei, Taiwan.
Seattle Municipal Archives
Seattle Municipal Archives
Office of the City Clerk
City of Seattle
PO Box 94728
Seattle, WA
Telephone: 2062337807
Fax: 2063869025
Access Restrictions

Records are open to the public.

Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Gordon Stanley Clinton defeated incumbent Mayor Allen Pomeroy in a close election in 1956 and subsequently served two terms as Mayor of Seattle, from 1956 to 1964. Upon taking office, Clinton established the Metropolitan Problems Advisory Committee, headed by local community leader John Ellis, to suggest approaches to dealing with chronic local and regional problems. During his administration, Clinton tackled issues as divergent as regional governance, international trade, and discrimination in housing.

Clinton actively supported development of enabling legislation used by the State Legislature to allow creation of regional governments, leading to the formation of the Metropolitan Municipality of Seattle (Metro) in 1958. Clinton also initiated Seattle's sister-city program in 1956, supported the development of the current Seattle Center site for the World's Fair in 1962, and fought illegal gambling in Seattle.

In 1963, Clinton created the 12-member Seattle Human Rights Commission to promote equality and understanding among Seattle residents; the Commission investigated and made recommendations regarding discrimination based on race, religion, and national origin. The Commission was also charged with drafting an open housing ordinance which was referred to the voters in 1964; it was overwhelmingly defeated (the City Council passed an open housing ordinance in 1968).

Clinton, formerly a lawyer, is now retired.

Historical NoteReturn to Top

The Mayor is the chief executive officer of the City with responsibilities for law enforcement, appointing department heads, administering City departments and programs, and preparing and executing the City budget. Seattle's original Charter (1869) created the position of Mayor who served as ex-officio President of the Common Council. The 1875 Charter gave the Mayor a vote on Council. That was amended in 1886 to provide for a tie-breaking vote only. The 1890 Charter completely separated the Executive and Legislative branches. Mayoral terms were set at 4 years by the 1946 City Charter.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The collection consists of black and white photographs of Mayor Gordon S. Clinton's travels to Manila, Philippines; Kobe, Japan; and Taipei, Taiwan in November of 1959. Pictured are tourist activities, ceremonial events, and officials. Images from the Kobe visit include an album documenting Mayor Clinton's visit to the shipyard and engine works of Mitsubishi Heavy-Industries, Reorganized, Ltd., which manufactured heavy machinery as well as ships and planes; pictured are tours, meetings, and the launching of the M.S. Seattle Maru.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Preferred Citation

[Title of image, date. Item number.] Gordon Clinton Photographs, Record Series 5219-04. Box [number], Folder [number]. Seattle Municipal Archives.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Photographs are arranged by subject.

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.

Gordon Clinton Photographs, November 1959Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Visit to Kobe, Japan
Visit to Manila, Philippines
Visit to Mitsubishi (Kobe Shipyard and Engine Works) in Kobe, Japan
Visit to Taipei, Taiwan

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Personal Names

  • Clinton, Gordon S. (Gordon Stanley), 1920--Photographs

Corporate Names

  • Seattle (Wash.). Mayor
  • Shin Mitsubishi J¯uk¯ogy¯o Kabushiki Kaisha--Photographs

Geographical Names

  • K¯obe-shi (Japan)--Photographs
  • Taipei (Taiwan)--Photographs
  • Manila (Philippines)--Photographs

Form or Genre Terms

  • Photographic prints


  • Mayors--Washington (State)--Seattle--Photographs