Bailey Gatzert

Bailey Gatzert

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Bailey Gatzert

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Bailey Gatzert (1829–1893) was the eighth mayor of Seattle, Washington, serving from 1875 to 1876. He was the first Jewish mayor of Seattle, narrowly missing being the first Jewish mayor of a major American city (Moses Bloom became mayor of Iowa City, Iowa, in 1873), and has been the only Jewish mayor of Seattle to date.

Gatzert was born in 1829 in Darmstadt, Germany, and emigrated to Natchez, Mississippi, in 1849, coming west four years later. In 1869 he opened a Seattle branch of Schwabacher Brothers and Company, a hardware and general store he managed as partners with his brothers-in-law Abraham, Louis, and Sigmund Schwabacher.

In addition to being mayor, Gatzert was charter member of the Seattle Chamber of Commerce, served on the Seattle City Council 1872–1873 and 1877–1878, was president of Puget Sound National Bank and Peoples Savings Bank, and co-founded Washington's second synagogue (Seattle's first), Ohaveth Shalom, which opened in 1892. Washington's first synagogue was built in Spokane.

The famous sternwheeler Bailey Gatzert is named for him, as is a Seattle elementary school.

Gatzert died in 1893.


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