Description: This is Part 4 of 5 of an interview with William Street. This interview was conducted by Willis Camp in 1985.
William S. "Bill" Street, (1904-2000) was a department store executive who was president of Seattle's Frederick & Nelson store from 1946 to 1962. He also served as vice-president of the Seattle Chamber of Commerce. Street retired to chair the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair (Century 21 Exposition). In 1963, he became president of United Pacific (later Univar), which had interests in real estate, chemicals and other areas, then served as a board member. He also served on boards of Seafirst and Washington Mutual banks.
Every other year from 1962 to 1977 Street and his wife, Janice Kergan Street, led a mammalogy expedition funded by Chicago's Field Museum of Natural History to countries such as Iran, Nepal, Peru and Australia. They shipped everything they acquired back to the museum; many of these items remain in the museum’s collection today.
This interview is part of the Donald Schmechel Oral History Collection. Don Schmechel, who was a member of the Seattle Public Library Foundation board, began this project with Seattle Public Library in 1984, with the Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI) brought on board as a partner in early 1985. Schmechel himself worked to raise the funding for the project, and he volunteered his time to manage the project and to conduct interviews along with a crew of volunteers. Originally titled the Videotaping Historic Figures (VHF) Program, the project interviewed 91 people, and MOHAI holds the interviews for 32 of these individuals.The interviews conducted with these Seattle civic, business and cultural leaders in 1985 are valuable first-hand accounts that provide insight into developments taking place in the mid-twentieth century.
Digitization of this videotape material has been made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the Human Endeavor.
This oral history recording may be used for research only. For other uses, please contact the Museum of History & Industry at firstname.lastname@example.org.