top of page

The Longbranch Foundation History

For more than one hundred years the Longbranch Improvement Club (LIC) has been fulfilling its mission for the betterment of the community. As stewards of the LIC Clubhouse and the Longbranch Marina, the Internal Revenue Service recognizes the LIC as a tax-exempt social welfare organization under section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code.


The Longbranch Foundation (TLF) was formed in 2016 as a charitable organization under section 501(c)(3) in order to raise funds and provide grants for the betterment of the community. Both TLF and the LIC are managed and supported by the same pool of volunteers.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”


– Margaret Mead

Our Specified Charitable Purposes:


Preserving and Maintaining LIC's Historic Clubhouse

Maintaining and Improving LIC Grounds and Trails for Public Recreation

Advancing Education by Supporting Scholarship Programs and Public School Activities

Improving Environmental Protection & Public Safety at the Longbranch Marina

Supporting Community Service Organizations and Activities

Supporting the Community Wherever the Need is Greatest

Longbranch Improvement Club


The Longbranch Improvement Club formed a corporation in 1921 to buy “Real Estate for the purpose of a Consolidated School, Athletic, and Picnic purposes and to encourage any activity for the betterment of Schools, Homemaking, Roads, Marketing, Dairy, Poultry and all its branches.”

According to Key Peninsula Historical Society & Museum, “Improvement clubs grew out of the Progressive Movement that swept the nation from the 1870s to the 1920s. Civic duty and improving the quality of life were to be based on new learning and technology. This was a national focus, and Teddy Roosevelt tasked communities to focus on rural improvement.” It's interesting to note that even the City of Tacoma had an improvement club at one time.

In the 1940s when School #328 was discontinued, the LIC assumed ownership of the former gymnasium building, built in 1934 as a WPA project during the Great Depression. The old Pierce County pier in Filucy Bay had been abandoned in the 1930s when the “Mosquito Fleet” ferry service to Longbranch was discontinued. In 1959, members of the LIC, through agreements with Pierce County and Washington state, took over management and maintenance of the marina. They built a 168-foot pier and attached it to the old county dock.

Today, the LIC continues to be active on the Key Peninsula. The building and marina still serve in the spirit of the founders of the LIC. The marina is open to the public for use by local and visiting boaters. The clubhouse, now on the Register of National Historic Places, is used by the club for events and is available for rent. In addition, the local Fire District uses the property for helicopter evacuation practices, and the Parks District holds a Day Camp at the facility each summer.

Longbranch, Washington


A lot has changed in Longbranch since the photo above was taken in 1909.  The Narrows Bridge replaced the Longbranch-Steilacoom county ferry.  Local farmers took their eggs, berries, and holly to market using the new highway.  But the little village at the southern end of the Key Peninsula continued to prosper and grow.

Today Longbranch is the home of choice for those who value natural beauty, clean air, and the riches of the southern Puget Sound.  We have all chosen to live “at the end of the road” for our own reasons, but we all share a love of community, culture, and the pioneer spirit.

Investing in the South Key community, The Longbranch Foundation has been created to perpetuate the best of what’s here, and the potential of what can be for those who follow us. 

bottom of page