Document 9: Letter from Erastus Brainerd, Seattle Chamber of Commerce, to Local Businessmen,
November 20, 1897
Erastus Brainerd Scrapbooks, vol. 1, p. 18. Microfilm copy, University of Washington Libraries; original, Manuscripts Division, Library of Congress.
Nov. 20, 1897
Will you permit...this Bureau earnestly to request you to urge upon...your employees, that they should at once proceed to correspond with their old home newspapers and with friends in the East setting forth the merits of Seattle as the best Alaskan outfitting point....
This appeal is made to you...for two reasons. In the first place, it does not appear desirable to take this step publicly in order that Seattle's competitors may not be aware that there is any concert of action here on this subject; and in the second place for the very important reason that San Francisco and Portland are raising sums of money which already amount to more than ten times as much money as has been raised in Seattle and that this money will be spent by those cities, not only in advertising their merits, but in depreciating those of Seattle....
The letter to the trade paper, the religious papers, the society papers and to an old home county paper...coming from you and your clients, congregation, subordinates, employees or friends will be apt to receive more careful attention than one coming from an organization....
Yours very truly,
Erastus Brainerd, Secretary
Bureau of Information
Seattle Chamber of Commerce