Tuesday, July 16, 2024

HISTORIC BLACK VEGAS | The legacy of Q.B. Bush

May 5, 2021 by  
Filed under Community

Claytee D. White

The legacy of Q.B. Bush


Q.B. Bush loved life, his family, the Historic Westside, and the entire City of Las Vegas. A dealer at the famed Moulin Rouge, manager of a few gaming venues on the Westside, among the first Black dealers on the Strip, and the owner of a dealing school, Q. B. opened many doors for Blacks in Las Vegas.

Bush was born May 7, 1931 in Fordyce, Arkansas and given the name “Q. B.” Those are not just initials. He graduated from the Dallas County Training Center, entered the military, and moved to Las Vegas in 1954, where he married Elouise York in 1957. She migrated from Fordyce as well. They were blessed with three children – Dalora, Valora, and Anthony. Just like in the business arena, he opened his life and his home to lots of neighborhood children; several becoming God children that he mentored and loved like those of his own blood.

Q.B. dealt craps at the Moulin Rouge Hotel Casino in 1955 during the five months that it was the talk of the town. This first integrated establishment, which rivaled any of the joints on the Strip, closed before it could show its savvy and establish its place in the town’s tourism industry. So Q.B. moved his employment to the Jackson Avenue business corridor, where he worked at the El Morocco and Town Tavern. Simultaneously, he opened a dealing school that allowed many from the Black community to enter the gaming industry and move into jobs on the Strip and Downtown once the consent decree of 1971 was enforced. The decree allowed Blacks to work as 12% of many occupations in the gaming industry.

In addition to his work, entrepreneurial endeavors, and family leadership, Q.B. was community minded. A member of the Fordyce Club and a player in the Black Golf Club that, in the beginning, could only play at the Municipal Golf Club, he also attended many out-of-town Runnin’ Rebels games as the team played in the national spotlight in the early 1990s. At Q.B.’s memorial service in October 2019, his goddaughter, Glynda White, introduced me to her play brother, Fred Moten. When I mentioned Moten to a Las Vegas literature professor, she said that Fred Moten is “the finest critical mind on the planet.” Q.B. Bush’s reach was far, wide, and deep; his mentorship limitless.

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