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Bank of Finance event
Alternative Title
Los Angeles Photographers Photo Collection;
Curtis, Rolland J
Made accessible through a grant from the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation
Date Created and/or Issued
Circa 1968
Contributing Institution
Los Angeles Public Library
Los Angeles Public Library Photo Collection
Rights Information
Images available for reproduction and use. Please see the Ordering & Use page at for additional information.
Title supplied by cataloger.
Rolland Joseph 'Speedy' Curtis was born in Louisiana in 1922. After serving three years in the Marines during World War II, he and his wife, Gloria, relocated from New Orleans to Los Angeles in 1946. Curtis served four years with the Los Angeles Police Department, but resigned from the force in order to pursue both a Bachelor's and Master's degree from USC. He later became involved in city politics, as an associate of Sam Yorty, and later a field deputy to City Council members Billy Mills and Tom Bradley. He was briefly director of the Model Cities program in 1973. Rolland J. Curtis died in his home in 1979, the victim of a homicide. An affordable housing complex on Exposition Blvd. near Vermont Ave. was named in his honor in 1981, along with a nearby street and park.; The Bank of Finance was the first African American organized bank in California. Opened in 1964, it catered to small businesses in the community. During its time, it nursed local businesses to fruition and provided financial assistance for necessary community resources like medical centers, day care, and homes for the elderly. Members of the organizing committee included Dr. Edward H. Ballard, Dr. Perry W. Beal, Wilton A. Clarke, Onie B. Granville, Mrs. Bernice M. Malbrue, Tom Bradley and Lorenzo V. Spencer. The bank building at 2651 S. Western Avenue, and a branch opened at 8420 S. Vermont in 1968 have both since been demolished.; Gilbert Lindsay (1900-1990) was born on a cotton plantation in Mississippi where he later picked cotton for 50 cents a day. In 1928, he moved to Los Angeles and became a janitor for the Department of water & Power. By 1963, at the age of 62, Lindsay became the first African American to join the City Council. Appointed to fill a vacancy, he was reelected consistently until his death in 1990.; Born on March 14, 1926, George Pierre was a war veteran, author, politician, businessman, and television and movie screenplay writer. At the age of 16 he volunteered and enlisted in the armed forces as a PFC in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II and became the recipient of the Purple Heart. After getting out of the military, he earned many degrees including a Bachelor of Science in Biology, Bachelor of Science in Liberal Arts in Political Science, Associate in Arts in Social Sciences, Master of Arts in Political Science and doctoral candidate in Political Science. In 1955, George Pierre was nominated to the Judgeship of Colville Court in Washington State and in 1960, he was a candidate for the US Commissioner of Indian Affairs; in 1963, he was the installed Chief of the Colville Confederated Tribes after his father's death; in 1964, Pierre was elected and served one term in the House of Representatives for Washington State. As a businessman in the 1960's, George Pierre organized the "All American Indian Week" at the Los Angeles fairgrounds, an annual powwow and Indian arts and crafts market. Chief George Pierre died on September 16, 2011 and is interred at Arlington National Cemetery.
Photograph depicts an unidentified Bank of Finance event with guests; Don "Chief Rolling Thunder" Fisher (left) in full native dress, Councilmember Gilbert Lindsay, an unidentified smiling woman, civil rights activists and dentist Dr. Claude Hudson, and Chief George Pierre in full native dress, as well. No further information has been provided about this event. Photograph is circa 1968. See images 00120190; 00120200 through 00120209; 00121696; 00121697; 00125591 through 00125593; 00125597 through 00125600; 00138691 and 00138692 for additional photos in this series.
1 negative : safety ; 10 x 13 cm.
Photographic safety negatives
Rolland J. Curtis Collection
Lindsay, Gilbert
Hudson, H. Claude,--1887-1989
Pierre, George
Fisher, Don
Bank of Finance (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Lost architecture
Savings and loan associations
Banks and banking
Bank buildings
City council members
African American politicians
Civil rights workers
Community activists
Political activists
Native Americans
Native Americans--Clothing
African American men
Los Angeles (Calif.)
Time Period
Curtis, Gloria

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