Night & Day Archives » Night & Day

Making Change at the Bank

William Clay and the fight for justice

by

comment
While he was still a city alderman, William Clay, Sr. wrote a scathing report on employment in St. Louis titled “Anatomy of an Economic Murder.” Clay’s paper documented the complete lack of black employees at newspapers, auto dealerships, dairies, the breweries – and Jefferson Bank, which had recently moved to a new location downtown after firing all its black employees. Clay and other activists such as Ivory Perry and Marian Oldham marched on the bank daily for months, enduring threats and intimidation to force a change through non-violent means. This key incident in the history of St. Louis is documented in Clay’s most recent book, The Jefferson Bank Confrontation: The Struggle for Civil Rights in St. Louis. Clay discusses the book and the protest this evening at 7 p.m. at the Florissant Valley branch of the St. Louis County Library (195 New Florissant Road, Florissant; 314-921-7200 or www.slcl.org), an event which serves as the initial celebration of the county library’s Black History Month program. Admission is free, and copies of The Jefferson Bank Confrontation will be available for purchase.
Thu., Jan. 8, 2009

Riverfront Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of St. Louis and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep St. Louis' true free press free.