Friday, July 12, 2013

Michelle Purnell-Hepburn, VP / Controller

Michelle Purnell-Hepburn like her parents before her works in banking. Her family had an outsized impact on the Central Area through the Liberty Bank, black-owned and community supported it was the first African American bank in Seattle

Photo: Madeline Crowley

...here we come, these few people wanting to start a minority-owned bank. I just think the powers that be were not quite prepared for that at that time.  

About Michelle:

Michelle Purnell-Hepburn has spent her life in financial institutions, literally learning at her father's knee, then working at the Liberty Bank when young. The Liberty Bank was the first African-American owned bank at that time west of the Mississippi. It is an important part of Central Area history. 

This interview is now available in the book, We Lived Here, published by Chin Music Press: https://chinmusicpress.bigcartel.com/product/we-lived-here-stories-from-seattle-s-central-area






Your parents contributed to an important part of Central Area history, they were part of the Liberty Bank.

Well, the Liberty Bank of Seattle was a dream of my father. He wanted African-Americans to have the ability to create their own destiny. 
Liberty Bank. Mr. Gould, Rev. McKinney, Dr. Jackson. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn

Liberty Bank. Interior. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn

Liberty Bank. Original Application. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn



Liberty Bank. Telegram. Refusal of Charter. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. Dr. Jackson. Mr. Purnell (right). Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn



Liberty Bank. Opening Day. Mayor Braman. Gov. Evans. Mardine Purnell. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. Interior. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn



Liberty Bank. Opening Day Ceremony. Employees on a crowded sidewalk. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. The first employees. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. First Transaction. Teller Patrinell Wright. Customer Councilman Sam Smith.
Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. Board. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. First Day's Customers. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. Transacting Business. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. Councilman Sam Smith. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn

Liberty Bank. Staff. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


Liberty Bank. First Customers. Collection Michelle Purnell-Hepburn


(I learned of Liberty Bank via the Central District News supplemented this with research and found Michelle Purnell-Hepburn)

©  Madeline Crowley People of the Central Area 2013   All material is covered by copyright. Express written permission must be given for any copyrighted material on this page. Email to request permission to copy or paste materials. 


4culture.org
This project was supported in part by
4Culture's Heritage Projects program










Popular Posts

About Me

Seattle, WA, United States
I am not a professional photographer nor a trained journalist. At community meetings, it became clear that many of us don’t know each other. We haven’t heard each other’s stories and don't know each other’s circumstances. This is my attempt to give a few people the chance to tell their story, to talk about our community, to say their piece in peace. As such, comments have been disabled. The views and opinions expressed here are those of each narrator and do not necessarily reflect the position of views of the CentralAreaComm.blogspot blog site itself. The CentralAreaComm.blogspot.com is not responsible for the accuracy of any information supplied by narrators of this project. All interviews have been edited and in places condensed.

Search This Blog

4Culture.org Heritage Project. Copyright, Madeline Crowley, 2012-2015. Powered by Blogger.

Follow by Email