Fir State Golf Club, a primarily Black golf club, chose to call themselves Fir State after Washington’s state tree. To them, the evergreen fir tree was a symbol of strength and the ability to weather many storms. The club was established in 1947 to provide nonwhites an opportunity to learn and participate fully in the sport of golf. Up until that time, and in most places around the United States, including Seattle, clubs and tournaments were not open to golfers of color.
Regardless of their abilities, they were left out of opportunities to compete, gain recognition and acquire the economic rewards afforded to other quality golfers. This was true and condoned legally throughout the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s. At a time when Rosa Parks had not yet been arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a public bus and the 14th amendment to the US constitution, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, was still 17 years away, these determined golfers became some of the earliest heroes in the fight for equality and racial justice in Seattle.
As the pursuit for equity in sports continues, Out of the Rough celebrates the Fir State Golf Club for the historic role they played in opening up opportunities for all people to be able to participate fully in the sport of golf. There are only 3 days left to donate to help finish the film. Please consider making a donation at the Out of the Rough Kickstarter page: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1200799877/out-of-the-rough-stories-from-fir-state-golf-club.
The Fir State Golf Club’s home course is the Jefferson Park Golf Course on Beacon Hill. For more information on the history of the Fir State Golf Club and the Jefferson Park Golf Course: