August 16, 1943. Post graduate class of the College of Swedish Massage on East Ohio Street in Chicago, IL was presented with the idea of forming and association of Masseurs and Masseuses. The purpose would be to further the interest of it’s members and help each other become more efficient in their work. There was a letter in which Milton Niedfeldt wrote to Dean Swanson of the college in early 1943 suggesting they start an organization for their school. Some of the classmates were members of other organizations but were dissatisfied with them feeling like it was just a way for sales people to bother them.
Officers Elected: President – Charles Williams of Sausalita, CA
Vice President – Sargent Ira Lewis of Colfax, WA
Secretary – E.D. Easter, Indianapolis, IN
Treasurer – Mrs. Glen Anderson, Indiana
Honorary Membership given to Harry McConnell, Registrar of the College of Swedish Massage.
First Years Dues – $.50
See the History of AMTA-WA which was an instrumental part of creating AMTA for 1943-1948.
August 6, 1948 – National Convention held at the Frye Hotel in Seattle WA. 46 members present 1st day, 62 present 2nd day. Washington Chapter presented four resolutions which were passed. Fees increased from $7.00 to $10.00 with $6.00 going back to each state. Branch City Chapters were authorized, giving them the power to fundraise for the local chapter. The application fee would take $2 of the $6 and send it back to the state. A charter in the form of a certificate was to be conferred on the State and City Chapters authorizing them to function as an entire unit under National AAMM. Officers were re-elected. Hot Springs Arkansas chosen as the convention site for 1949.
December 21, 1948 – Oregon holds first meeting to organize their chapter.
January 29, 1949 – Secretary/Treasurer Williams and President Clark Cottrell went to Portland to organize the OR chapter.
February 13, 1949 – starting Spokane WA Chapter.
April 10, 1949- Spokane received their Charter with 11 members, presented by MA Niedfelt. There was a city ordinance which would have branded Massage Parlor as a house of prostitution. Decals were talked about as a way of distinguishing legitimate massage operators.
August 5, 1949- 4th National Convention held in Hot Springs Arkansas with 47 members and 25 guests present. Arkansas Chapter granted their Charter with Mae Stover Huges of Arkansas elected President. Virginia Chapter Charter presented to Martha Savills, secretary/treasurer and Sara Jane Beverly, Vice President. Time allowed for sight seeing. Leaflet titled “Little Known Facts” became available to members. By-laws misunderstanding about what a quorum meant created confusion and no business was conducted. Chicago chosen for 1950 convention.
September 26, 1948 – Wisconsin holds first meetings to form State Chapter.
October 23, 1949. Arkansas chapter held charter signing meeting in the home of JE “Dude” Aldrich in Little Rock, AK with 10 members out of 14 present. Officers Mae Stover Hughes, President. JB McAnealy, Vice President, Julian E “Dude” Aldrich, Secretary/treasurer.
October 1949 – Illinois chapter meeting in Joliet, IL. Elected officers: A.F. Reidel, President; George Morideth, Vice president; Arthur Melson, secretary/treasurer.
August 6, 1950. National Convention in Chicago, IL. Massage Registration Act was adopted and members were urged to get the bill passed in their home states. 4 more Vice President Positions were added to help with the administration work. Denver selected as Convention place for 1951.
Sept 19, 1950. Illinois Chapter meeting held. Officers elected.
November 1950. Kansas and Missouri Chapters were organized.
January 1951. Illinois State Chapter received their Charter and meetings were held to elect officers.
1951 – WA, IL, CA had bills presented to the legislature but failed to pass. AR and OR both passed a bill requiring a license to give massage.
July 8, 1951. Portland OR meeting. Massage bill passed created problems in how the bill was administrated. No massage therapists were on the Board of Examiners. It was placed under the Board of Health.
July 28, 1951. Georgia State Chapter Organized.
September 8, 1951. Georgia Charter signing meeting. State slogan created.
“In every rank, both great and small, May love direct and support us all.”
July 29, 1951 – 12 members gathered in Kearney, Nebraska. working on legislation.
August 3, 1951. 6th National Convention in Kansas City, MO. Treasurer report: all bills paid; $62.50 in the bank. Voted to return to only one Vice President.
October 15, 1951. Tennessee organizational meeting held.
1951. Arkansas legal issues over bathhouse workers and whether they had to get licenses too. Massage Act did not appropriate funds for running the Board of Examiners. Charles Williams questioned on his leadership and decisions for AAMM.
February 10, 1952. First Tri-State Meeting of members from Wisconsin, Indiana and Illinois. IL preparing bill for legislature. “The Masseur” was almost defunct so “The Masseur, Illinois Chapter” was created.
August 7, 1952. Seventh National Convention at the Congress Hotel, Chicago, IL. 46 members and several visitors with 13 states represented. Dues raised from $5.00 to $12.00, $8.00 would stay in the State Chapter and the other $4 sent to National.
1952. Kentucky Chapter organized.
1953. IL chapter had first meeting.
April 1953. Kansas Chapter created classes to share techniques and created a state directory.
1953. Arkansas still dealing with bath-house massage operators who were not abiding by the Registration Act.
August 7, 1953. National Convention held in Spokane WA. Membership count- 202.
1954. “The Masseur” magazine continues under the leadership of Dr. Charles Brooks who worked without compensation.
Aug 1954. National Convention in Davenport Iowa. New proposals adopted: no elected official could hold the office for more then 3 years. Associate members were now being accepted. Malpractice insurance offered to members.
AMTA encourages physicians to partner with massage therapists for pain management – ad and article in Practical Pain Management magazine
Will be adding more soon.
1982 – Council of Schools, Founded in 1982, was an independent forum for massage therapy school owners, administrators, and faculty to communicate. While independent, the council worked closely with the AMTA, as it was the largest massage association of that time. And in 1999, the COS made the choice to officially become the AMTA Council of Schools with hopes to expand and become more effective for the massage profession as a whole.
1990 – AMTA creates National Massage Therapy Awareness Week™ (NMTAW)
1990 – AMTA creates the Massage Therapy Foundation which was first called the AMTA Foundation – http://www.amtafoundation.org/ (archive.org link)
AMTA Membership March 1990 – 12,000
1992 – AMTA creates COMTA – The Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation
1994 – In 1994 COMTA became an independent affiliate of AMTA, operating separately and under its own mission, policies and procedures. In 2004 COMTA became a completely independent organization. COMTA’s Commissioners are an elected body of volunteers who make final decisions regarding COMTA standards, policies, and the granting of accreditation to schools and programs that apply for accreditation.
1997 The first AMTA National Massage Therapy Awareness Week took place in 1997 www.archive.org
1999- In 1999 an independent council of schools, which long had a relationship with AMTA, decided to become part of AMTA and the AMTA Council of Schools. Currently, there are some 480 School members of AMTA
1999 – (Oct Press Release)
AMTA Membership Passes 40,000 San Antonio, TX — The largest and oldest professional association of massage therapists, the American Massage Therapy Association, announced today at its National Convention that its membership has officially passed 40,000.
“This is an exciting occasion to celebrate at our national convention”, said Adela Basayne, AMTA President. “The growth of our association in the last few years has paralleled the rapid acceptance of massage by the public. We are delighted that the public is learning the value of massage and that qualified massage therapists recognize the benefits of being part of AMTA.”
AMTA’s membership has more than doubled since 1994 and now has members in 30 countries. In 1990, membership was approximately 12,000.
The association, started in Chicago in 1943, includes professional massage therapists, students enrolled in recognized, 500-hour minimum massage schools, qualifying massage schools, and organizations and individuals who support the association’s efforts. AMTA’s mission is to develop the art, science and practice of massage therapy in a caring, professional and ethical manner in order to promote the health and welfare of humanity.
All AMTA Professional members have demonstrated a level of skill and knowledge through education and/or testing. New Professional members must be graduates of training programs accredited by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA); be graduates of AMTA Council of Schools member-schools; be Nationally Certified in Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork; or have a current AMTA-accepted city, state or provincial license. AMTA has a Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice for its members.
The association also helps consumers, medical professionals and personal care services find qualified, professional massage therapists nationwide, through its Find A Massage TherapistSM national locator service. The free national locator service is available via AMTA’s Web site at www.amtamassage.org and toll-free at 888-843-2682 [888-THE-AMTA]. AMTA Archive.org
Approximately 20 percent of Americans continue to say that the primary reason they don’t get a regular massage is that they are too busy. This figure has varied little since 1997, with 20 percent giving this reason this year, 21 percent in 1999, 18 percent in 1998, and 24 percent in 1997. People understand its benefits, but say they are too busy to take the time to get a regular massage.
Almost one third of adults (29 percent) say that medical reasons would motivate them to get a massage. [Some medical reasons include: muscle soreness/stiffness/spasm (10 percent); to reduce pain (6 percent); for injury recovery and rehab (4 percent); for wellness and prevention (2 percent); greater joint flexibility or range of motion (2 percent); or because of a medical prescription or physician recommendation (2 percent).]
Twenty percent report that they would seek therapeutic massage for relaxation and 10 percent say they would seek massage for stress reduction.
Membership March 2002 – 46,000
2002 – AMTA publishes the Business of Massage Book
2002 – Article in Parade magazine October 13 issue of Parade magazine
Sept 4 2004 – AMTA Foundation changes it’s name to the Massage Therapy Foundation.
2009 – AMTA provided more than $500,000 to support research and the work of the MTF and more than $4 million from 2000 through 2009.
2009 – In late January at the Council of Schools annual meeting and leadership conference, COS members expressed a desire to retain independence from the AMTA, stating concerns of member schools being underserved and council members as ineffective under the AMTA control. In that meeting, a motion was made to establish the COS as an independent nonprofit organization. The motion made by council member Iris Burman was adopted by a majority vote of the member schools. News Brief: AMTA Board of Directors Disbands Council of Schools By Editorial Staff Massage Today 9/23/2009
2009 – AMTA announces the end of the Council of Schools. to make way for the Alliance of Massage Therapy Educators
According to alliance Executive Director Rick Rosen, the birth of the new group occurred only after six months had elapsed since the Council of Schools adopted a motion to begin separating from the AMTA and to reform as “an independent and autonomous non-profit organization.” With no action taken on the part of the council, education leaders took matters into their own hands and launched the alliance, he said
2009 – Alliance for Massage Therapy Education created. AFMTE is an independent educational organization comprised of a six-member leadership team including Iris Burman, Su Bibik, Stan Dawson, Eugenie Newton, Rick Rosen and Pete Whitridge