The Optimist Club has had several branches of Optimist International, which is a worldwide volunteer organization "whose Members work each day to make the future brighter by bringing out the best in children, in their communities, and in themselves." 1
The Oakland Optimist Club started in 1921. WWI flying ace Captain Eddie Rickenbacker and L. F. Dinkelspiel of H. C. Capwell's were charter members. 4 R. C. Bitterman was the first president. Abe Bekins of Bekins Storage was the first sergeant-at-arms. 5 Their regular meetings were held at the Hotel Oakland. When that was converted to a U.S. Army hospital during WWII, the club met at the Leamington Hotel,
The East Oakland Optimist Club first met February 5, 1925. 3 Clarence N. Cooper was the first president.
The North Oakland Optimist Club was chartered February 27, 1947. 2 Conrad J. Lund was the first president. 6 Their regular meetings were at 6533 Telegraph; by the late 1950s their regular meetings were at Art's Buffet at 4031 Broadway.
Links and References
- Optimist International website
- New Clubs Built in 1946-1947 optomist.org
- East Oakland Optimist Club Unfurls Its Colors Oakland Tribune February 6, 1925
- Laughter, Love, Life, Object of Optimist Club Oakland Tribune May 17, 1921
- Optimist Club Gets Its Charter; Given Welcome Oakland Tribune May 18, 1921
- Optimist Club Gets Charter Oakland Tribune February 25, 1947
- Eddie Rickenbacker on Wikipedia