City of Tacoma announcement.
The Tacoma City Council confirmed the recommendation of the Landmarks Preservation Commission to designate the Henry J. and Nettie Craig Asberry House a City Landmark during the City Council meeting on January 4 through the passage of Resolution 40898.
“The addition of Asberry House to our City Landmarks is an important and historic moment for Tacoma,” said Historic Preservation Officer Reuben McKnight. “We are incredibly excited and appreciative of the work that has gone into making this possible.”
Built in 1887, the house is a remaining example of the initial settlement of Tacoma’s emerging Hilltop neighborhood, but its major significance comes from it being the longtime residence of Henry Joseph and Nettie Craig Jones Asberry from 1903 until 1966. The Asberrys were influential community advocates and iconic leaders in the Black community both locally and regionally. They were founding members of the Tacoma Chapter of the NAACP and the Tacoma City Association of Colored Women’s Clubs. Nettie Asberry was the organist at the Allen AME Church for many years, and taught generations of music students at the Asberry residence.
“As a club member for more than a quarter century, the landmarks designation of the Asberry House is one of the most exciting things I have witnessed” said Cynthia Tucker, Board President of the Tacoma City Association of Colored Women’s Club. “This is an important designation for our community and the preservation of history. I want to extend a huge thank you to all those who made this happen. We as a club did not do this alone.”
The nomination was researched and submitted by Historic Tacoma, and is part of a broader effort to acquire, restore and preserve this historic residence. As part of the 2021-23 biennium budget, the Washington State Legislature awarded the Tacoma City Association of Colored Women’s Clubs (TCACWC) an appropriation to acquire the historic Asberry Home Site for future renovation and public benefit. Forterra NW joined the TCACWC as a partner on the request. Plans are underway for assessing the condition of the house and developing a restoration plan.
For more information about City Landmarks, visit cityoftacoma.org/Landmarks.