Primary Source

James Hooker Hailstone

Name: James Hooker Hailstone, Jr.

Used my middle name, Hooker, most of my life since I was a junior in high school.

Birth Date or Year (optional):

10/1/29

Your history in Issaquah/How long lived here, etc.:  

Born and raised in Issaquah.

If you have lived here all or most of your life, why did you choose to stay?

I stayed here to be close to friends and family.

Married Dorothy “Sunny” Wilson from New Westminster, British Columbia in 1949.  We have 4 children, 7 grandchildren, 3 great grandchildren and have lived at High Point for 45 years.

Issaquah or area school(s) attended:

Issaquah Grade School:       1st through 8th

Issaquah High School:          9th through 12th

Family History in Issaquah:

Family History in Issaquah: The Hailstones moved here in 1888.

 

 

Education—Coming of Age

What are your memories of Issaquah High School?  Which teachers were influential?

High School Memories

1943-47

Initiation into high school – you got thrown in the creek!

I played sports for a couple of years.

Favorite field trips were in Agriculture: butchering, pruning trees, de-horning cattle.  We butchered in the back of the Ag. Shop which sometimes was during recess for the grade school next door.

Favorite Teachers:

Lawrence Jensen:  Manual Training-woodshop

Fred Frohs:  Agriculture

 

What memories do you have of Minnie Schomber, or another favorite teacher?

I did not have Minnie Schomber as a teacher.  I remember she was on the Draft Board during WWII, so she was not the most liked person in town (by the young guys) during that time.

 

Were you affected by earthquake damage to the schools in 1949 or 1965?

Not affected.

 

What kind of extracurricular activities were you involved in?  Did you play football or chess, or did you act in the school plays?  What were memorable games or plays?

I played football in sophomore and junior years and lettered.  Played Mt Si with 2 inches of snow on the field.  The groundskeepers dumped gas and lit it on the field’s yard lines to clear them for the game.

When I was a senior, I played center for the Alpine Dairy, semi-pro football team, 1946-49.

Coaches: Eddie Parker, George Morgan.

Trainer: Ralph DeSmith.

Teammates: Jim, Nick and Pete Bakamus, Tommy Bevin, Dave and Harold Chevalier, Frank Crosly, Ellie Croston, Jack Evans, Al Pankey, Bill and Rex Seil, Mike Sernitch, Jack Shelfa, Larry Totten, Art Wallace.

 

Where did you and your friends spend your free time as teenagers?  What kind of mischief did you get into?  How did your parents or teachers punish you when you got into trouble?

Free Time: In the good weather – mostly at Lake Sammamish.  If you weren’t working, you were at the lake.

Drove cars before I was legal age and did some wild driving.

Mischief:  Wasn’t in trouble much at school – so teachers weren’t involved in punishment.  One year I was noted for my careful driving at school – which was a joke.  My friends and I spent a lot of time working on our cars and then driving around.

Parents Punishment:  There was always a lot of work to do around home, not too much to do to get into trouble.

 

Local businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?

Hailstone Feed and Seed:  (Owner: Francis Hailstone) Front St N at current bus stop across from new Village Theatre.  Hang out and feed, hay, grain, gasoline, lube room.  They would buy blackberries (big wild ones) in the late summer/early fall, also cascara bark (used in making laxatives).

The Honeysuckle (owner: Tom Dryly – about where the driveway is between the new Library and the Issaquah Gallery).  Went in and had milk or cherry cokes.

Sunset Cafe (owner:  Ritzy -near where gas station is at Front & Sunset) and the Busy Bee (where the new library is):  As a teenager would stop by to visit with locals.  You knew everyone in town – half were related.  No extra money to buy things there, just socialize.

Punchy Pain’s Pool Parlor: owner:  Punchy Pain – located on the corner of Front and Alder (Bahá’í Center) Played pool for a nickel a game.  You could work your games off by helping cleanup, racking balls, etc.

Triple X Barrel: owner Pete and Adelle Schaeffer 1946-47 located on East Sunset Way across street from Busch Collision.  Purchases Root Beer and Cherry Cokes while we played the pinball machine.

Grange:  run by Ellsworth Pickering on Front St.  Favorite purchase, as a teenager was Black Jack gum.  Shopped there my whole life – until it closed.  Favorite memory was duckpin-bowling lanes (2) on the north side of the building by the creek.  We got a nickel a game for setting the pins, there was no automatic pinsetter.

Would also stop at Alpine Dairy on the way home from school to see if we could get some free ice cream.  Herman Garby was the ice cream maker and we walk in to the plant right back to him.

Moshier’s Market:  owner Mr. Moshier, located on Front St N between Fishers Meat Market and Finney Meat Market.  Stop to pick up few groceries and visit 1949-51.

 

What barbershop or beauty shop did you frequent?  What do you remember about these places?  What were the popular hairdos when you frequented the beauty shop?  Did you do a lot of socializing at the barber and beauty shops?

My father cut my hair until I was a teenager with clippers that had a tooth missing. Boy it would pull.

Then went to Lewis Barber Shop got crew cuts/flat tops from Dave Lewis.  Located on E Sunset Way next to Hepler’s Ford by the current Texaco Station.

 

What is memorable about Lewis Hardware?  What items did you purchase there?

Purchased most everything there.  Ammunition, hunting and fishing licenses, plumbing household repairs, paint, glass.  If they didn’t have what you needed they would order it.  Also, did a lot of socializing at Lewis Hardware; all of the hunters and fisherman hung out there – lots of good stories.

 

Where did you go to buy your groceries?  Did you go to Tony and Johnny’s, or RR Grocery on East Sunset?  Do you remember your favorite clerk?  Were there any items that these grocers specialized in?

Most grocery shopping was done at the Grange – Favorite Clerk Joan Boni Karvia.  Even got my Kern and Green cork shoes/boots through the Grange.  You would get a requisition and go in to Seattle to have them custom fitted, if needed, at the Grange’s price.  They would also rebuild the shoes at least once.  Bought all groceries there.  Family has frozen food lockers, cold and warm.  The old original lockers you went into a cold storage room.  The newer warm lockers were accessed from the warm hall.

 

What restaurants or soda shops did you enjoy going to?  Did you go to Rena’s Café, or XXX Root beer?  What was your favorite food?  Were there memorable waiters or waitresses?

Restaurants:  Don’t recognize Rena’s Cafe.

Favorite Waitress Maxine Dougherty at the Honeysuckle  1945-47

 

Did you go to Boehm’s Candies?  What candies were your favorites?

Our favorites were, and still are, Seafoam with Dark Chocolate and English Toffee.

 

What saloons or local bars did you and your friends frequent?

Union Tavern, Eagles Tavern, Park Inn.  Don’t know Johnnie’s Tavern or Elmer H.

 

What do you remember about Grange Supply?

Frank (?) Stickney was manager.  Bought gasoline and fuel oil there.

I have been a member of the Grange since 1953, but I traded there even earlier when I worked in the woods.  Also purchased McCulloch chain saws there.

 

What do you recall about Lawill’s drug store?

Lawill’s Drug Store was right across from Punchy Pain’s.  Where Edward Jones location is now.  We bought drug supplies and ice cream cones. Family owned and operated by Mr. & Mrs. Lawill.

Stevenson Drug Store: where the alley is between the Odd Fellows Hall and Shanghai Garden (Fasanos).  Owners, Stevensons, lived at the location also.  It was somewhere we could go for after hours medical needs.

One time I cut my thumb opening pop bottles for the Rainbow Girls Tolo party at the Fireman’s Hall.  I walked over to Stevensons to get bandaged.  They were part of old Issaquah, they helped everybody and everybody worked together.

 

Local Politics

What important local political issues of Issaquah are memorable?  Do any particular politicians stand out?  Why are they memorable?  What did they accomplish while in office?

The only local politician I remember was when Frank Hailstone was the Justice of the Peace mid 1940s

 

What do you recall about Mayor Stella Alexander, the first female mayor of Issaquah (elected in 1933)?  Were there any other local politicians or political activities that drew scandalous attention?

No memories.

 

Do you recall Ordinance No. 752 that changed most of the street names in town?  What were your feelings about this change at the time?

It would have been nice to have our family name represented.  We lived just outside the boundaries I guess.

 

The Great Depression

What are your memories of the Great Depression?  Did you have a job at this time?  What ways did you try to save money?  What did you eat?

I remember we ate a lot of oatmeal.  I was a child at this time, so not employed.  At our house, there was always food on the table.  When my father would deliver feed/grain he would often be paid with vegetables, chickens, pigs, etc.

During this time, my father drove school bus for Issaquah School District in 1936-37 and would be paid with vouchers.  Each of the school busses had nicknames like:  chicken coup.

 

World War II

How did World War II affect the town of Issaquah?  Did you know men or women who went to fight in the war?  Did you leave Issaquah to join the war efforts?

I knew a lot of people who went to war, including my brother Donald James Hailstone – I was too young.

 

How did the Japanese Internment affect Issaquah?  Did you know men and women who were taken to Internment Camps?

I knew one family from the valley and one from the Plateau that were taken away.  The community lost those farmers.

 

What kinds of jobs did the War bring to the area?  Where did you work at this time?

The war had one of my sisters, Helen Hailstone, working at Boeing.  My father was building houses in the Renton Highlands for Defense Department personnel; some locals and some that had been brought in from the mid-west.

I helped take in hay on the farms as a young teenager.  In the later part of the war I worked in the woods logging with my father.  The war ended during this time.

 

Issaquah Round-Up—Salmon Days—Labor Day Celebrations

What do you remember about Labor Day Celebrations or Salmon Days?

Figure 1- (1947-48) – Ron Turner & Hooker Hailstone at Labor Day Carnival. They would set up a fake jail and sell photos taken there.

Labor Day:  We always played semi-pro football against a military team. In the mid-1950s, I was going to fill in as a relief player for the Issaquah team.  But the Seattle Cavaliers were short handed so I ended up playing for them – the whole game – as tackle.

The team was coached by Elmo H[udgens], he was a policeman at the time.  My children ran along the sidelines cheering for me.  I was the oldest guy on the team- they all called me “Dad.”  I continued to play for the Cavaliers part of the season traveling to games at the Monroe Reformatory, Grays Harbor Junior College (where they didn’t throw in a new player – they threw in a new TEAM!)  Issaquah was the home field for the Cavaliers.

One year, we were at Labor Day with our newborn daughter, Robin – she was only 3 days old.  Later, my children always looked forward to being in the parade.  Everybody went to Labor Day.  People came from all over, Renton, Kirkland Seattle, Redmond, Snoqualmie and North Bend.  It was the biggest celebration around then, especially after the war with the return of all of the men.

There was always a carnival for the Labor Day celebrations.

 

What special activities were there at Labor Day Celebrations, or at Salmon Days?  How has Salmon Days changed over time?

My daughter, Robin, that first went to Labor Day as a 3 day old baby, ended up getting married on Salmon Days weekend in 1976.  She later became the Salmon Days Festival Director in 1996.

Salmon Days has changed the most in size.

 

What are your memories of the Rodeo?

The Rodeo was before my time.  My father helped clear Memorial Field in 1919-1920.  He horse-logged at that time and he would bring the horses home.  He would take the horses to help clear the field, then he would take them back to the barn for the next day’s work.

 

Was there any year that these celebrations were especially memorable to you?

My wedding day 12/3/49.  The special ceremony took place at the Grange Mercantile Building – upstairs.  It would hold more people than any of the little churches in town.

Figure 2 – 1949 – Engagement weekend. Dorothy “Sunny” Wilson and Hooker Hailstone.  Bandage on Hooker’s forehead is from a car accident that occurred en route to Canada that weekend driving to propose marriage to Sunny.

 

Special Occasions

What were some of the other memorable special events and occasions in Issaquah?

 

I used to help my mother Emma Hailstone, when she cooked for special events:  Lions Club, Couple’s Club, Kiwanis and banquets.

Some Hailstone family Thanksgivings were held upstairs at the Grange.  Part of the evening activities would be drawing names for the Christmas gift exchange.

Family Christmas parties were also held at the Grange with special appearances by Santa (aka Bill Bergsma Sr. – who continued that for 60 years).

 

Outdoor Recreation

Did you spend a lot of your free time outside?  What do you remember about fishing, hunting, or hiking in the area?  What was your favorite hiking trail?

Outdoor Recreation: A lot of time outside.  I got all the fish we needed out of Jordan Creek (salmon, trout and red fish).  We would go down to Lake Sammamish to swim and fish.

Hunting:  the best for our area was the Middle Fork of the Snoqualmie and Pratt River.  We hunted Black Tail and Pacific deer.

Favorite hiking trail:  The shortcut to Mason Lake and Kula Kula.  Trail accessed off I-90 at Camp Mason, 9 miles east of North Bend.  Sometimes we would hike in with oatmeal and Lipton’s soup, a 22 rifle, fishing pole and stay for 3 or 4 days.  My favorite hiking partner was Joe Haldeman.

As a family we would hike the Blue Lake Trail in to camp at Trail Lake.  My mother didn’t fish, so she picked blueberries – lots of blueberries – she put them in everything.  I don’t eat them much to this day.

 

What type of fish did you catch?   How many trout did you catch in the Issaquah Creek and what was the biggest?  Did you fish in the kids fishing derby held in Issaquah?  Were your methods for fishing and hunting any different than they are today?

We caught some salmon, as many as we needed to eat and trout.  The largest from the Issaquah Creek was a steelhead that was 19 pounds.  I never got involved in fishing derbies.

Fishing methods were much different in the old days.  We had a stick for a pole, especially on Jordan Creek.  A hazelnut branch was preferred, because it would bend and not break.  No reels in those days, you wound the line around the end of the pole.  If you wanted more line, you turned the pole and unwound it.

Hunting has changed because there was a lot more game in the old days.  We lived on the deer, elk, and fish that we caught.  There was no hunting for trophies – it was the food on our tables.  We hunted for Black Tail, Pacific and Mule deer (Mule deer in eastern Washington) on the middle fork of the Snoqualmie River, and on the Lake Tradition plateau and Pine Lake Plateau (north side of High Point and over the hill).

 

What are your memories of Vasa Park?  What did you do while there?

My most vivid memories are of the Swedish Mid-Summer Festival.  Visitors would come from mid to late 1940s, in to the 50s.  It was a festival that all the old timers, Norwegians and Swedes would come for.  They would have their flags up, their native dancing in costumes and lots of food and beer and happy revelers.  People would stay the weekend, camping in tents or just sleeping under the stars.

There was Carl Johnson aka “Foul Holt Johnson.”  Various members of his family used the last name differently – Johnson and Johanson.

The big hangout was the Vasa Tavern in the late 1940s early 50s, especially in the winter when the woods were closed.

My Dad’s cousin, Billy Corkle, owned it in the late 30’s- early 40s.

 

Did you go swimming in the local lakes in the summer?  Or ice-skating at the Horrock’s Farm in the winter?

As kids we swam at Sunset Park on Lake Sammamish – later known as Lake Sammamish State Park and at Alexander’s Beach on east Lake Sammamish.  Also, swam at Hans Jensen’s – which he later donated to the State Park and it is now the boat launch.  As a teenager and in my early 20s we would occasionally swim in Pine Lake.  It was too far to go there often.

Figure 3 – 1955 – Hooker Hailstone with son Don at Lake Sammamish State park. Where the family spent most of their summers while the children where growing.

ICE SKATING: only memories are skating on Pine Lake.

 

Logging and Sawmills

How did the logging industry affect Issaquah?  How did it change?  Did you work in logging?  For what logging camp or sawmill?  What do you remember of your logging days?  What type of machines did you use for logging?  How did you transport logs? How large were these logs?

The train went through town to haul logs.  Half of the people in town worked with logging or were in someway connected to it.  I joined my father logging in the summers when I was 15.  My father was a jippo logger, which means he had a small independent operation.

After working with my father, James Hooker Hailstone, Sr.  I worked for Olsen and Lind in 1947, I went from there to Mountain Tree Farm, then went to Weyerhaeuser, DeGross and Swanson.  I left the woods in the winter of 1953 and went to work for Darigold.

MACHINES:

I started using an ax, a spud and a peavey to peel poles and pilings.  Then I got to run a Swede fiddle (Royal Chinook bucking saw) used for busheling (1,000 board feet to a bushel).  Then went to 12 horse titan blue streak (also used for busheling).  Then went to 71/2 horse McCulloch used for busheling.   Then to the new version – direct drive lightweight versions of the saws.

Transportation of logs:  Most of the places I worked were trucked logged.  Two places reloaded on to the railroad.  One cedar at Swanson Brothers, they had to quarter a butt cut, to get it under a state highway bridge.  It was right around 16 feet in diameter.  Many Douglas fir were 5-8 feet in diameter.

Do you remember the Monohon Mill, the Red Hall sawmill by the fish hatchery, the High Point Mill, the Preston Mill, or the Issaquah Lumber Company Mill on Front Street South? Do you remember when there was a fire at the mill?  Did you help fight it?  Did you see the fire?

SAWMILLS:  I remember all of the listed mills.  We shipped a big old fir down to Monohon.  It was a big, ugly thing -but it was sound.  It took them half a day to saw it up.

I remember the fire at Monohon but didn’t see it.

I hauled a lot of alder and maple in to Red Hall Sawmill, it was right by the Fish Hatchery.  I hauled fir (over 30 inches in diameter) in to Preston.

Figure 4 – 1956 – Hooker Hailstone bucking short logs

Figure 5 – 1956 – (Left to right) Grandfather-in-law -Robertson Walmsley, Children: Candy (Hailstone) Hammer, Donald Hooker Hailstone, Robin Hailstone Kelley, unidentified girl, Hooker Hailstone.

 

Salmon hatchery

How has the salmon hatchery affected Issaquah?

It was good thing to have in town and it is to this day – now as a tourist attraction/education facility.  The Hatchery is the only time many will see these fish – up close – alive.

 

Farming and Dairy

Were you involved with farming in Issaquah?  What farm did you work on?  What was grown or raised there?

My father would deliver hay, grain and feed to the farms.  He always carried his shoeing equipment with him so if their horses threw a shoe, he could put it back on.

 1935 – 1950 I drove horse as a child to pull the hay up in the barn for uncle, Andy Hailstone, continued to help haying throughout the years and milk cows when needed.  His homestead farm was located just north of the bottom of Vaughn’s Hill.  He used geese as watchdogs in the old days – he could always tell when someone was coming to the house.

 

Do you have any memories of Pickering Farm?

I worked for Pickering Farm taking in hay and then went to work for C.W. Peters (at current Federal Express site and north) cut, raked, shocked, and hauled hay.  In those days people helped one another- if it was haying time – friends would help friends.

 

Did you work at the Issaquah Creamery, or what is now Darigold?

Darigold:  I started in 1954 as a truck driver of canned milk, powdered milk, butter, Good Joe (chocolate milk) products, hauling it to Seattle.  Sometimes I would help on a night run farm pickup.  I moved from trucks to inside the plant, started as a night receiver/clean-up person, moved later to day receiver. Then transferred to cooking cottage cheese, making butter and powdered milk.  The last ten years as Separator and Pasteurizer.  Retired after 37 years, 10 ½ months.

At one time in the late 1960s, 4 family members, representing 3 generations, worked at the Issaquah Darigold plant.

 

Railroad—Transportation

Did you travel frequently into Seattle?  How did you get there?  What did you do while in Seattle?

I would frequently go with father on the feed truck to Seattle.  We would drive Highway 10 through Renton and Dunlap Canyon.  We would go to Sperry Feed Mill, Centennial Feed Mill and pick up orders for the Hailstone Feed Store and then back to Issaquah.

In 1937, I was stricken with a bone disease and needed to be taken in to Seattle to the Children’s Orthopedic Hospital for a 6-week stay.  It was an all day trip to get in there and back for my parents.  No floating bridges in those days.  They could visit me once a week – maybe.  My classmates sent get well letters, to encourage my recovery, I still l have them to this day.

 

How did the construction of I-90 change life in Issaquah?

More people moved to and visited Issaquah because it was easier to get to. I-90 divided many old parcels of land.  Our families’ homesteads were impacted 3 times by I-90. Highway 10 displaced family members 6 times.

My family home (in what was known as Frog Town) was just north of the freeway, where the westbound entrance is now.

When I-90 came, many developers bought property and held on to it.

 

What was your first car?  Did you buy it from Hepler Ford Motors, Stonebridge Chevrolet, or the Kaiser-Frazier dealership?

1931 Chevy Roadster, it was a beauty – Maroon with black top.  I purchased it from a private party (Frank Raggio).  It had musical horns; you could play tunes on it.

 

Fraternal Organizations—Local Halls

What are your memories of the fraternal organizations?  Did you belong to the Elks Lodge, or Lions Club, etc?

When Eagles first opened, I belonged to for a few years.  My mother, Emma Hailstone, was very active in Orthopedic, Garden Club, Rebeccas, Grange and VFW.

 

Did you attend the Sportsmen’s Club?  Do you remember when it was built in 1937?  What did you do at the Sportsmen’s Club?

I remember it being built.  My children took Firearm Safety classes there.  The only other time I spent there was in the mid 60s when my son worked for them running the machine that shoots out the clay pigeons for target practice.

 

What types of events did you attend at the Volunteer Fire Department (VFD) Hall?  Did you use the shooting range located in the basement?

I don’t remember the shooting range in the basement, but that was our locker room for the Alpine Football league.  I also attended dances there in the mid 40s.

 

Did you attend dinners, dances, banquets, or other events in the upstairs Grange Meeting Hall?

I was married there. We attended banquets, family functions and worked for my mother (Emma A. Hailstone) cleaning up. She was in charge of renting the facility, the operation and cleanup.  She would turn on the furnace to warm the place up before events.  She even had to carry up buckets of coal for the cook stove and the heater (she was under 5 feet tall!).  They later converted both to oil.  Many activities mentioned in previous sections of this Memory Book.

 

Mining

Do you have any memories of Issaquah’s mining days?  Were you involved in mining?

My dad (James Hooker Hailstone, Sr.) used to shoe the mules for Harris Coal Mines.  No other mining memories.

 

Entertainment

What movies did you go to see at the Issaquah Theatre (the Old Movie House) to see?  How much did movies cost?  Did you ever go to the back upper corner of the theatre to kiss?

MOVIES:  We would go once a week – whenever we could get ten cents together.  One movie we remember was Old Buttermilk Sky with Hoagie Carmichael.

Friday Night was always a western movie.

 

Churches

What church did you attend?  What memories do you have of this church?  Were there any pastors, reverends, or church leaders that stand out in your memory?

The minister that married us was a woman!  Her name was Mrs. Hines.

 

Additional Memories

In the 1960s I fell timber for Don Finney on Front Street South, one block south of where Newport Way meets Front Street, at the bottom of the Middle School/Pool grounds.  Monty Clark lived next door and he said I had cut down the “hanging tree.”

Beer, wine and stills:

Since at least the 1920s locals have been producing illegal alcohol  in the Issaquah area.  Issaquah residents had stills located from north on the plateau to south on the Hobart Road.  Hometown folks were earning their living, or just extra money, distilling spirits.  They were making wine and homebrew out of grapes, blackberries or whatever fruit would ferment.

One local moon shiner was conned into giving away liquor when a newcomer to town was passed off as a Federal man.  After a week or so, the moon shiner learned the truth and cut off the supply.  He was a young man rejoining our local family.  My uncle, Frank Hailstone, had been living in the southeast, Kentucky area, and was one of the first organizers of the miner’s union.

Since the early teens (1913 ), local teens would grease (with lard or any other kind of grease or oil) quite a length of the train tracks on the way to the big trestle.  The fun came when the train would attempt to climb the hill, the steam pot would go wild and the train would spin out.  The brakeman would beat the brush looking for the kids that greased the tracks.  The teens could always outrun him.  Then the brakeman had to go back and sand the tracks, by hand, to get traction.  They would have to back down to Issaquah and leave part of the train.  Then they would take one part to Preston and have to come back for the rest. In later days they added sanders to the locomotives.

Back to the Memory Books

Marian Stefani Hampton

Name: Marian Stefani Hampton

Your history in Issaquah/How long lived here, etc.:

I was born at 8020 Renton Issaquah Road SE.  Dr. Hillary helped with the delivery.  I have lived here most of my life, leaving only to attend college in Bellingham and the University of Colorado.  Taught school 2 years in Bellevue, one year in Boulder, Colorado, one year in London, England, and one year at Clark Elementary in Issaquah after marriage, lived here most of my life.

 

If you have lived here all or most of your life, why did you choose to stay?

Married Ken Hampton in 1956.  We meet in first grade in Issaquah at the old elementary school where the junior high is now.  We built our home near my birth place using lumber from the  old Bessie Wilson Crane home that was part of the Issaquah Valley Diary.  Our 3 children also went to school here.  Two still live here.  We remain because we love the foothills, our family, and friends in this area.

 

Issaquah or area school(s) attended:

Issaquah Elementary 1-7, Issaquah High 8-12, Western 1-4

 

Family History in Issaquah:

Grandparents- Frank and Angelina Stefani.  They owned several houses in Issaquah, a laundry, and a saloon.  Sold all to buy a farm and run a poultry business at 7932 Renton Issaquah Rd. SE.  My father was Clem Stefani, liquor store manager on Front Street.  Maternal Grandparents were Harmke and Henry Bergsma- owners of Issaquah Valley Diary.  Ken, my husband, has lived here since the 1930s with his parents, Lydia, and Lawrence Hampton and Grandparents Mary Louise and Lee Hampton.

 

Education—Coming of Age

What are your memories of Issaquah High School?  Which teachers were influential?

Issaquah High School sat on the hill where the pool is.  We could walk downtown to eat lunch or eat on the lawn with its view over town.  Ed K. Erickson was helpful in expanding my interest in teaching by encouraging me as an aid in 2nd and 3rd grades with special projects.  This resulted in my chance to go to Western with a scholarship for tuition and books from the Kiwanis plus money from the Chamber of Commerce.  I became a teacher as a result of this.  Francis Crelly, our English and Literature teacher was the director of the junior play and is still my friend after 40 years.  Fred Frohs was the agriculture teacher and worked at the Issaquah Valley Diary for my grandfather in the summers.  Now he plays golf with my husband all these years later.  Our school was small enough that we all knew each other.

 

What memories do you have of Minnie Schomber, or another favorite teacher?

I didn’t have Minnie as a teacher but she and my Aunt Delina Stefani were classmates and played basketball together.  Minnie’s husband Jake was the janitor at Issaquah Elementary and we called him “Daddy Schombers.”  We cleaned erasers on a “machine” in his office and in the corner was the coal storage for the school furnace, a huge box like thing fed by a coal shut.  Jake had pictures of hunting dogs on the wall by his desk and he and Minnie were lovers of the outdoors and hunters.  He loved visiting with the kids as he and Minnie didn’t have a family.  Minnie was on the draft board during WWII and always was an influence on our town.  When I graduated from high school Jake and Minnie gave me a lovely gift.

 

Were you affected by earthquake damage to the schools in 1949 or 1965?

In 1949 I was about to graduate, but had left school to go to the dentist in West Seattle.  When I returned to school that day everyone was excited about the earthquake but the school wasn’t too damaged.

In 1965, the damage was more severe everyplace.  My father, brother, and I were driving home from fishing at Pine Lake and we went to the liquor store that Dad managed on Front Street and could see liquor seeping out onto the sidewalk under the door.  It was a mess inside and the smell of the vodka, rum, whiskey, and wines all mixed together drew a crowd.  Darigold workers brought us a metal barrel or 2 so we could mop up and pick up glass.

 

Local businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?

The feed store at the center of town was a hangout for older older folks.  Lee Hampton, my husband’s grandpa, walked to the feed store every day, sat on the steps and visited with townspeople and farmers.  You could purchase hay and grain and farm supplies and it smelled good and was dusty and big inside.

My grandfather, Frank Stefani owned a saloon in town but I’m not sure of its name.  I thought it was on Front St., but Frank was Catholic and gave the saloon key to the priest so he could come in before mass and get the wine he would need at church.  The priest helped himself to the liquor too and came to mass drunk.  The church members thought my grandfather had gotten the priest drunk and blamed him for it.  Frank said if the priest had no more self control than to steal his liquor while picking up the wine he had donated for sacramental purposes, he was finished with the Catholic Church.  He never went to church again and none of his children were even married in the church in later years.  He sold the saloon after being injured by a knife trying to stop a fight.

 

What barbershop or beauty shop did you frequent?  What do you remember about these places?  What were the popular hairdos when you frequented the beauty shop?  Did you do a lot of socializing at the barber and beauty shops?

Didn’t have money for beauty shops.  My mother cut our hair and my aunt Esther Bergsma gave perms.  My father went to Dave Lewis’ barber shop for haircuts.

 

What is memorable about Lewis Hardware?  What items did you purchase there?

We went to Lewis Hardware for everything from pipe, tools to household things and fishing and hunting gear.  Tom knew everything and gave advice on how to fix things.

 

Where did you go to buy your groceries?  Did you go to Tony and Johnny’s, or RR Grocery on East Sunset? Do you remember your favorite clerk?  Were there any items that these grocers specialized in?

Most things were purchased at the Grange but sometimes we bought things at Tony and Johnny’s or R & R Grocery.  Mr. Stevens ran it then.  Tony was so fast at adding the cost of groceries in his head without using a cash register or pen and paper- it put most people to shame.   T and Js had lutefisk in a box on the sidewalk and someone said dogs sometimes relieved themselves on it.  I never liked lutefisk before, but I really avoided it after hearing that.

After we no longer raised our own beef, my dad bought wonderful meat from Fishers.  Mr. Fischer made his own sausage and people came great distances to buy it.  Mr. Fisher died when his sons were at an age.  Mrs. Fischer was worried they might take up smoking.  She gave all her husbands beautiful pipe collection to my father to get them out of the house.  Some were German and had carved stems.  A few years ago I came across the pipes in my mothers attic and now that the youngest son was now 70 I gave them back to him and told him his mom said “No Smoking George!”

 

Did you purchase things at the Grange Mercantile Building?  What type of things did you get there?  Did your family rent a frozen food storage locker?

My parents shopped at the Grange every Saturday morning.  Ellsworth Pickering was the manager and gave the kids wienies and sometimes a chocolate éclair.  Joan Boni Karvia, Ethel Stickney and Hettie Wiggins were the clerks.  We had our beef in the frozen food lockers there too.  Because we had our own gardens and raised beef, pork and poultry we bought things like crackers, cheese, and whatever we needed to “fill in”.  Flour, soda, baking powder, noodles, and candy.  The Watkins man came selling door to door and we bought vanilla and furniture powder from him rather than the Grange.  The Watkins labels were all the same color and when my mother was cleaning house when I was baking my dad a birthday cake I put furniture polish in it thinking it was vanilla.  We had to throw the cake to the chickens, but everyone had a laugh, and the chickens didn’t die.

 

What restaurants or soda shops did you enjoy going to?  Did you go to Rena’s Café, or XXX Root beer?  What was your favorite food?  Were there memorable waiters or waitresses?

The Busy Bee Café was fun as my Uncle Bill Bergsma always won things on the punchboard and let me put 5 cents in the pinball machine.

In high school we went to the XXX Root Beer for burgers cooked by Ken Goben or Bea.  Later Rena’s opened and June Berg and Rena baked those “out of the world” pies.  Everyone came for a pie and coffee and Mike Shane helped cook and serve the food too.  All ages hung out here for the food and camaraderie.

Drylies was the place to go for Green Rivers, cherry cokes, and ice cream.  High school kids worked for Mr. Drylie and gave good servings when he wasn’t around.  When he waited on you for the ice cream cone was small.  He was stern and didn’t want you being nosy either.  In later years after I had grown up and helped my father in the liquor store, Mr. Drylie had retired and came to visit and I came to see him as a nice and very interesting man.  And he had a good sense of humor too.

 

Did you go to Boehm’s Candies?  What candies were your favorites?

Boehm’s was such a special addition to our town.  The candy was spectacular and Mr. Boehm came into the bank and other stores he did business with at Christmas and brought the clerks boxes of candy and wished them well.

Mint truffles were outstanding and the rocky road was a hit with my mother and aunts.

The building and art work have drawn so many to our town it is something to remain proud of after all these years.

 

What do you remember about Grange Supply?

My father, Clem Stefani, was on the Board of Directors for the Grange Supply for a number of years.  We bought our fuel oil from them.  Dan Boni was there for years and our oldest son, Greg worked there after school in the 70s.

 

What do you recall about Lawill’s drug store?

Years ago in the 30s they had a contest there and you got points for your purchases.  All the Bergsmas shopped there and gave their points to me and I won a beautiful doll.  I still have her sitting in a little rocking chair in our living room.

My first memory of Lawill’s was the absolute quiet in there.  It was almost spooky and then he would glide out to help you.  He was very nice, but so serious.  Once in my teens I went in and said I was there to pick up a subscription for my mom.  Then realizing my mistake I hurriedly said prescription but he caught my mistake and actually SMILED.  It was the first time I had ever seen him smile.  A milestone.

 

Local Politics

Do you recall Ordinance No. 752 that changed most of the street names in town?  What were your feelings about this change at the time?

I was sad to see the names go, but I’m finally used to it now.

 

The Great Depression

What are your memories of the Great Depression?  Did you have a job at this time?  What ways did you try to save money?  What did you eat?

My parents married in 1929 but I was born in 1931.  Everyone was poor when it came to money, but most had gardens and raised beef, pork, and chickens.  Everyone canned fruit, vegetables, and beef.  We traded and bartered for what we needed and others had.  Orange crates served as shelves and our neighbor man took the stage (bus) to Seattle and brought home cedar that had washed up on the beach where the King Dome was built.  He built a cedar dresser for me out of the wood and also a little rocking chair I still have.  We didn’t have a refrigerator until 1940 so we kept cool milk in Tibbetts Creek in a wire box.

We picked fruit and made jam.  Mother and I took 2 water buckets each and walked up Thurbergs Road (SE 78th now) a mile or 2 and picked small wild blackberries.  We picked our pails full, walked home from Cougar Mtn. In the evening and she canned them on our wood and coal range- in July!  We baked blackberry pies too.  Then in August the big evergreen berries were ripe and I’d pick them to sell to the cannery and use the money for school clothes.  We had home baked bread and rolls, dandelion greens for salad and chicken every Sunday at the Stefani Poultry Farm, my grandparents next door.  We made home made root beer, popped popcorn and made fudge.  My grandpa brewed and bottled beer and made plum, grape, and raspberry wine.  Before Sundays’ chicken dinner he served tiny glasses of wine and drank a toast to our good fortune.  Salud!

Mom milked the cows and we had cream and butter.  We planted strawberries, raspberries and beans, corn, and squash, and pumpkins.  There were 4 or 5 apple trees and a peach, plum cot, pear and hazelnut orchard.  We ate better then than we do now.  Fast food was the sandwich you ate as you ran around playing kick the can.

 

World War II

How did World War II affect the town of Issaquah?  Did you know men or women who went to fight in the war?  Did you leave Issaquah to join the war efforts?

Everyone wanted to enlist or help in some way.  So many left high school for the service.  My friend Virginia Kirby said goodbye to her boyfriend Alfred Ambrose and he was killed in the Army.  Some left and came home wounded.  Carl Walker left and wanted to write to my father who ran the liquor store but couldn’t remember the address.  A postcard addressed “To the Village Bootlegger” was hand delivered by Mr. Stephenson, the postmaster.  We planted Victory Gardens and pasted stamps in books to buy War Bonds, collected tinfoil and rubber bands and made black out curtains and elected air raid wardens.  We had airplane spotters and rationed butter and meat.  I wrote letters to my cousins and uncles who were in the Army.  We were all focused on one thing and it was winning the war.  It was the last time I can remember when there was dissension.

 

How did the Japanese Internment affect Issaquah?  Did you know men and women who were taken to Internment Camps?

I didn’t know any but my Aunt Mary Bergsma and husband Art lived in Fall City and were so sad when their neighbors were sent to an internment camp.

 

What kinds of jobs did the War bring to the area?  Where did you work at this time?

I was still in school but women went to work at Boeing and the car shops.  My cousin who was a chemist went to work at Hanford.

 

Issaquah Round-Up—Salmon Days—Labor Day Celebrations

What do you remember about Labor Day Celebrations or Salmon Days?

We waited all year for the parade and fun.  Labor Day meant the town Football team played and Les LaBree’s band would play at the fireman’s hall and everybody danced.  One year as a kid I dressed my little fox terrier up in doll clothes and a bonnet and pushed her up Front Street in my baby buggy.  A.I. “Squawk” Garner dressed in drag and joined the parade and was a big hit with all the friends who were used to seeing him wearing suspenders and cutting meat at the butcher shop.  One year all the men were to grow beards or they would put you in jail and fine you.  The money went towards building a float.  My dad grew a beard and wore an Arab headdress and they put him in jail anyway!

 

Was there any year that these celebrations were especially memorable to you?

In 1949 I was representing the Chamber of Commerce and selling tickets on a car to raise money for Labor Day.  It was fun and I rode on the Queens Float as a princess.  The Chamber of Commerce gave me a gold bracelet.

 

What special activities were there at Labor Day Celebrations, or at Salmon Days?  How has Salmon Days changed over time?

Labor Day celebrations were different because they weren’t as commercial.  Everyone knew each other and you could enjoy smaller type activities for fun.  We had a carnival in town for several days so we saved money ahead to spend there.

 

Outdoor Recreation

Did you spend a lot of your free time outside?  What do you remember about fishing, hunting, or hiking in the area?  What was your favorite hiking trail?

We spent time cutting our winters wood supply.  As a child I played in Tibbetts Creek catching minnows and crawdads.  Caught my first trout there too.  When the red fish came up my grandfather would gaff one and pickle it with onions and spices.  In my teens I tried hunting in the valley but when quail flew up they were so pretty I could never shoot them.

My best hike was through the woods to Pickering Hill with Mom to try and find a wooden barrel bank full of Indian head pennies and nickels that she lost there when she was little.  She was playing catch with it and it rolled into the berry bushes and no one ever found it.  I was so sure we would see it, but no luck.  We wondered if the bulldozers ever uncovered it when the houses were built there in the woods.

 

What type of fish did you catch?   How many trout did you catch in the Issaquah Creek and what was the biggest?  Did you fish in the kids fishing derby held in Issaquah?  Were your methods for fishing and hunting any different than they are today?

We fished in Lake Sammamish for perch using worms and eggs and when it got darker in the evenings we caught catfish there and also in Phantom Lake.  Pine Lake and Beaver Lake had good trout fishing too and opening day was a big event.  We usually placed small bets on who would catch the first fish.  Ellsworth Pickering was a very good fisherman.

 

What are your memories of Vasa Park?  What did you do while there?

Vasa Park was a skating rink in the 40s and Friday and Saturday nights all the kids went there to roller skate.  Jerry Anderson was a great skater.

Later, dances were held there at midsummer celebrations and there were picnics and swimming.

 

Logging and Sawmills

How did the logging industry affect Issaquah?  How did it change?  Did you work in logging?  For what logging camp or sawmill?  What do you remember of your logging days?  What type of machines did you use for logging?  How did you transport logs? How large were these logs?

There were logging camps through out the region in the 1930s, 40s, and 50s.  One was located across the road from Sunny Hills Elementary on the Plateau.

In 1950 and 51 my father and Jack Garner logged our east hill of Tibbetts Valley to get money to fund my college expenses at Western Washington College.  Jack set and rigged the spar pole and trucked the logs out.  There are still pieces of cable on the ground there.

Cougar Mountain was logged for older and pulp trees in the 70s by Jerry Harklerood.  Now Intracorp has logged most of the fir there so they can build Cougar’s East Village in that area.

 

Salmon hatchery

How has the salmon hatchery affected Issaquah?

The hatchery has always been a good thing for Issaquah.  So many people have been involved with the educational aspects of the salmon life cycle through the years.  It has always been an interesting place that we can take visitors to tour.

 

Farming and Dairy

Were you involved with farming in Issaquah?  What farm did you work on?  What was grown or raised there?

Stefani Poultry Farm raised chickens and sold eggs.  We cleaned and candled the eggs and packed them for shipping.  Orders were taken for fryers and we killed, plucked, cleaned and cut the chickens and customers stopped and picked up their orders.  The fertilized eggs were placed in incubators and I loved watching the chicks hatch.  They were put under heat lamps in the brooder house and raised.  Some reached a certain weight and were sold to Oban’s.

We also were involved with Issaquah Valley Dairy.  They had milk cows and sold milk on a route in Issaquah and Preston and High Point.  They made their own hay and shipped milk to Darigold too.

 

Do you have any memories of Pickering Farm?

In the earlier days all the farmers were friends and were helpful to each other.  In later years after many farmers left the business, I remember the Pickerings still farming and bringing their equipment into others’ fields to cut and bale hay we could no longer use.  They could use the hay and it kept the fields clean so they weren’t a fire hazard.

 

Did you work at the Issaquah Creamery, or what is now Darigold?

No, but I did help deliver milk, butter, and cream with my Uncle Bill Bergsma for Issaquah Valley Diary on this truck below, and earlier vehicles.  We delivered to the Busy Bee Restaurant and had milkshakes and burgers cooked by Gerty Seil and Mary Harris.  The Best!  Delivering the milk wasn’t hard, but you soon learned to watch out for mean dogs.

 

Railroad—Transportation

Did you travel frequently into Seattle?  How did you get there?  What did you do while in Seattle?

My grandfather, Henry Bergsma, took cans of milk to Darigold in Seattle and sometimes took mom and me with him for the drive.  Went to Renton to get there.

In 1948 some of the junior class went to Seattle to celebrate the end of our successful junior class play.  Some kids hid in the cars’ trunk to avoid paying the floating bridge toll.  We ran out of gad and had a flat tire, which proved crime doesn’t pay.  After walking to get help etc. we had a miserable time getting the tire fixed and didn’t get home ‘til 4 a.m..  It was a school day.  Our parents grounded us for four months, and the teachers lectured us in every class about calling home if we were going to be late!

 

How did the construction of I-90 change life in Issaquah?

In the 30s and 40s it was always so quiet in the valley that I longed for something exciting to happen.  When I-90 arrived it was a shock.  It divided up farms with some pastures on either side of it.  Henry Bergsma drove us to a farm where the farmhouse and barn were separated by the road near where Port Authority is now.  We couldn’t believe how ruthless I-90 was turning out to be.  It was easier to get to Seattle but harder to farm.  Truck and car noise drowned out the sounds of the frogs at the Issaquah Valley Diary where Hyla Crossing will be developed.  Developers arrived and changed everything.  Be careful what you wish for when you long for changes.

 

Fraternal Organizations—Local Halls

Did you attend the Sportsmen’s Club?  Do you remember when it was built in 1937?  What did you do at the Sportsmen’s Club?

My father, Clem Stefani, was a Sportsmen’s Club member and we always went to the turkey shoots there before Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Jake Lott ran the paddle wheel game and we won a turkey there most years, or sometimes on a Missouri shoot.  The turkeys were live and someone stuck it in a sack and you brought it home and kept it till the big day and had to do it in!  Once we won a live goose and it was so mean we never did eat it and it beat and flailed me with its wings and pinched me with its beak until I hated it…just hated to feed that thing.  It must have died of old age and meanness.

The Sportsmen’s Club always had a picnic at Beaver Lake in the summer and it was great with penny scrambles for the kids and 3 legged races and crazy games for kids and grown ups too (who sometimes had a beer or two too many).

 

What types of events did you attend at the Volunteer Fire Department (VFD) Hall?  Did you use the shooting range located in the basement?

The Labor Day dances there were really something.  Les Labrees band played and the polkas, two steps, and Swedish Waltzes were such fun.  It seemed like everyone in town came and the kids danced too.  When everyone stomped the floor during the polka you wondered if all the dancers were going to fall through into the shooting range in the basement.

Even though people drank and sometimes got in fights there didn’t seem to be the vicious meanness to it then.  I can’t ever remember being afraid in those years. We all knew each other or were related it seemed.

It was sad when the VFD Hall came down.

 

Did you attend dinners, dances, banquets, or other events in the upstairs Grange Meeting Hall?

Yes, every Christmas there was a Grange party and one year I had to memorize a poem to do as part of the program.  My husband, Ken, remembers playing on stage with the other kids when he was little and his dad, Lawrence, called square dances there on Saturday nights.  The kids would fall asleep on the benches while the folks danced.  A potluck ended the evening.

Cliff and Loretta Lewis cooked many a Grange dinner there every year too, and hundreds came for that.

Most people who are now in their 60s and 70s can remember sliding and running on that big dance floor and playing hide and seek back stage in earlier days as children.  By the time you were worn out it was time to head down that long flight of stairs and go home.

 

Mining

Do you have any memories of Issaquah’s mining days?  Were you involved in mining?

My grandfather, Henry Bergsma, worked in the mines and sold milk to miners.

When I was a child living on Sunset Highway (Highway 900 now) I would see the trucks go by taking the miners to work.  I think Matt Yourglich drove and stopped to pick up all along Tibbetts Valley, the Finnish miner neighbors of ours.  They all sat on benches in the back of the trucks carrying lunch buckets and wearing hard hats and carbide lanterns and at 4 or so in the afternoons they came back from the mines black from head to toes.  They got off the truck at their driveways and walked home to clean up before they went into their homes.  Our neighbor, Bill Maunus, had black lung disease in later years.  Two mines were about a mile beyond our house, the Bianco and Harris, I believe.

 

What were the working conditions like in the mine? Which mine did you work for, and what was your job?

The coal slag caught fire underground and coal smoke blew along the edge of the valley and some evenings we could smell it inside and it made me cough.  The glass in the windows of the south end of the house is stained from it and never washes off.  This slag burned for years and years.

In the 1940s they used a little mule to pull the coal cars out of the mine opening and I heard it was blind.  They staked it out across the road sometimes and once it got loose and ran down the highway to our place. Mother and I tried to catch it so it wouldn’t get hit by a car and finally someone took it back to the mines.  I felt so sad to see it go back.

Coal was washed and the coal dust came down Tibbetts Creek and formed black jelly-like edges along the water.  If I played in the water my socks turned black from coal dust residue.  We could see mine air vents on Cougar Mountain across from our house.  East Village is being built there now.  Six office buildings and 17,500 condos and homes.

 

Entertainment

What movies did you go to see at the Issaquah Theatre (the Old Movie House) to see?  How much did movies cost?  Did you ever go to the back upper corner of the theatre to kiss?

Mostly Friday night cowboy movies, Gene Autry and Roy Rogers.  I do remember Gone with the Wind and the Wizard of Oz too.

When I was in high school in the 1940s the school had the Issaquah Theatre show a movie on venereal disease.  We had to have a signed consent form from our parents and they walked us down town from school to see this as a part of health class during the day.  After seeing the graphic gory parts meant to shock us.  I’m sure there was little going on in the upper back corner for several weeks, kissing or even holding hands!

Mrs. Brunsburg took tickets and money for the movies and her son Danny seated people.  It was also his job to keep everyone quiet and orderly.  When we saw him coming with that flashlight we usually quit the giggling and shaped up.

 

Churches

What church did you attend?  What memories do you have of this church?  Were there any pastors, reverends, or church leaders that stand out in your memory?

The old Issaquah Baptist Church or “community” church was the only one I went to.  We were married there in 1956 at Christmas time by Rev. Larson.

Back to the Memory Books

Wilma Nikko Hill

Name:Wilma Hill

Birth Date or Year (optional):April 28, 1917

Your history in Issaquah/How long lived here, etc.:

I lived here my entire life -84 years

If you have lived here all or most of your life, why did you choose to stay?

It’s Home – Why go away?  Most of my family all lived here.

 

Issaquah or area school(s) attended:

12 years in the Issaquah Schools.

Family History in Issaquah:

Uncle Ed Nikko – cousin Floyd Nikko

Brother Toivo and Larry Nikko (twins)

Sister Helen Mattila

One brother Arvo died of polio at the age of 14

 

Education—Coming of Age

What are your memories of Issaquah High School?  Which teachers were influential?

Mr. Edgerton and Harold Byrd stand out in my mind. I told Mr. Edgerton I didn’t want to take geometry anymore because it didn’t make any sense to me. Mr. Byrd was my civics teacher and he was good.  I remember one assignment he gave us. He asked us what kind of  person would we want to marry.   Our class of 1935 was the first freshman class in the new high school which was located where the pool is now.

 

What memories do you have of Minnie Schomber, or another favorite teacher?

I didn’t  know her as a teacher. I never had her.  I remember one teacher, Marie Lesher. She had a big ruler and would whack the kids on the top of their hands.  The kids all knew she was “in control” You probably call that abuse today.  No parents came to school to complain about it.  Most of the parents were immigrants and didn’t really question the teacher’s discipline.  They probably were just glad that their children were in school.

 

Were you affected by earthquake damage to the schools in 1949 or 1965?

My son was in school in 1949.  There was extensive damage to the school.

 

What kind of extracurricular activities were you involved in?  Did you play football or chess, or did you act in the school plays?  What were memorable games or plays?

We didn’t have that many extra curricular activities. Transportation was a problem.  Everyone went on the same bus (K-12th grades) so about the only activities were playing  baseball at recess.  I do remember a story about the bus driver, Mr. Jensen, the manual training teacher.  He use to tell us if we didn’t behave on the bus we could get out and walk.

I do remember being in a play in the 3rd grade.  We were “rain drops” with come kind of paper outfits.  I remember I couldn’t participate in the play because my brother had died of polio and our whole family was quarantined for two weeks.

 

Where did you and your friends spend your free time as teenagers?  What kind of mischief did you get into?  How did your parents or teachers punish you when you got into trouble?

In the winter time we’d go sledding at George Goode’s corner.  He had a big bobsled and he would pull us kids around with his car.  There wasn’t very much traffic then, maybe a car here and there.  We played baseball, tag, hid-in- go-seek, auntie-I-over (throwing the ball over the house) and walking on stilts.

I learned about mischief from my brothers, Larry and Toivo, also, the neighborhood boys, Cliff Olsen, Al Kerola, and Elvin Barlow. They use to go out and “fool cars”.  They did this by putting an old tire out in the roadway which had a rope tied to it.  When someone would stop they would pull the tire off the road with the rope.  Someone must have reported them to the police because they came by one night and shown the spotlight in the woods trying to find the mischief  makers.  So, one day I thought I would “ fool the cars” so I got an old purse and tied a string to it.  And guess who came by, Preacher Lundell. He stopped and got out and was so surprised to see the purse move. I pulled it and then realized who he was and I was scared to death.  That cured me of fooling “fooling the cars”.

 

Local businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?  (see below)

1.     I remember Fisher’s Meat Market and going to town in a horse and buggy to shop.. This was one of the meat markets in town before Tony and Johnny’s store.  I can remember A.I. Garner working there and giving us a “wiener” …..the good old fashioned wieners.

2.     The other meat market was Finney’s.  It was located next to Fishers.

(My father would take my sister, Helen, and me shopping on Saturday.  My mother didn’t go because she couldn’t speak English.  Dad worked in the mines and learned some English, so he could communicate at the stores.)

3.     I remember going to the dentist, Mr. Holland.  His office was his home which is located next to the Historical Town Hall Museum.

4.     We also would to Cussac’s Shoe Store, located on the north side of Drylies.  His home was located on the 2nd level.

5.   Another store was Coutts dry Goods.  I would buy some thread there for my Mom.

Behind Coutts Store was Talus’s “ Country Store”, it was owned by a Finnish couple.

6.   The old bank building housed Dr. Gibson’s office and the telephone operator on the second floor.  The bottom floor had the telephone operator and the Post Office. The operator was Mrs. Morgan.  She knew everyone’s business because she could and would listen to every ones conversations.

 

What barbershop or beauty shop did you frequent?  What do you remember about these places?  What were the popular hairdos when you frequented the beauty shop?  Did you do a lot of socializing at the barber and beauty shops?

I think I went once to a barbershop, Paul Bensen’s.  They didn’t have a beauty shop in the 20’s and 30’s in Issaquah.  My mom would just give me a “Dutch boy” haircut, but the barber gave me a shingle layered haircut.  I guess I was trying to assert my identity.  I was probably  twelve or thirteen years old.

Most people were too busy to hang around the barbershops. It didn’t seem like they were places with a lot of socializing.

I do remember my mom having the neighbor girls, Mabel and Myrtle Olsen come over and curl our hair for a special occasion. like a school fair.  They would give you what was called a “Marcel” ….bumps in your hair.  They would take a curling iron and heat it with a kerosene lamp and then wrap your hair around the iron.

 

What is memorable about Lewis Hardware?  What items did you purchase there?

Joe Lewis owned it originally and then his son, Tom, took it over. He probably had items for the miners to purchase.  I can remember when I was married and I walked to town to buy a grindstone for my husband Earl for Christmas.  I still have it.  I wish I still had my grandfather’s grindstone.  It was huge and I can remember having to turn the grindstone while my father sharpened the mower blades on his hay mowing machine.  Sometimes I turned it really fast so I could stop and rest a few seconds, but, my dad would chastise and say, “Just go steady all the time!”  We also used to buy carbide for the miner’s carbide lamps and other household tools.

 

Where did you go to buy your groceries?  Did you go to Tony and Johnny’s, or RR Grocery on East Sunset? Do you remember your favorite clerk?  Were there any items that these grocers specialized in?

We shopped at the Grange store.  Ethel Stickney , Imogene Woodside, and Joan Karvia were the clerks and “Pick” (Ellsworth Pickering) was the manager.  There was also the Mile’s grocery which became the “Red & White Grocery.  Leonard (Chubby) Mile’s dad owned it and worked there also.  I can remember walking down to Mile’s grocery store at lunch time with my friend Emma Salo to buy a marshmallow cookie or a chocolate éclair.  We never had any special cookies like that at home.  Emma’s parent, had a charge account at the store so we put the cookies on her parent’s account.

As a child I  can remember a man coming by weekly to sell pastry.  My favorite was the butterhorns.  They were huge and had big walnuts on them.  You can’t find butterhorns like that anymore.

On Fridays another man would drive by with fresh fish—probably from Seattle.  My mom would walk down to the road and buy it.  It would be wrapped in newspapers.

There was also Tony the Peddler.  He came around about once a year.  Usually in the Spring.  He had a suitcase filled with clothes.  I can remember my folks buying me a dress from him when I was in the sixth grade.  It was for my violin recital.  That was such a special dress because it wasn’t a “hand-me-down”.  The only reason I took lessons was because they were free!  Mr. Miller was the teacher and he would give the “free” group lessons in the hope you would sign up for private lessons.

 

Did you purchase things at the Grange Mercantile Building?  What type of things did you get there?  Did your family rent a frozen food storage locker?

That was “the store” in town for buying groceries.  They had other items too, like boots.  It was kind of a Fred Meyer store of today.  My dad would buy flour and sugar in one hundred -pound sacks for the baking.  My folks did not rent a locker, but, I did after I was married.  We would buy a quarter or half a beef from Mike Kacir.  If my dad butchered beef, my mother would can the meat.  She also made salt pork.  When a beef was butchered, my mother would collect the blood and make “blood bread”.  It was considered a staple.  It was baked into a flat bread that was cup up and put in milk.  That’s what we had for breakfast.  When I was in the eighth grade, one of the boys in my class announced to everyone that the Finns made blood bread.  All were flabbergasted.  The Finns also made lutefisk which was a Christmas specialty.

 

What restaurants or soda shops did you enjoy going to?  Did you go to Rena’s Café, or XXX Root beer?  What was your favorite food?  Were there memorable waiters or waitresses?

The Barrel was located next to Fink’s Garage (Stonebridge Chevrolet).  It was a chain restaurant like McDonald’s.  I would order a ten cent hamburger and a pineapple milk shake, which was my favorite.

There was also Drylie’s Soda Fountain.  Mr. Drylie was a sour puss.  He belonged to the “dry squad”.  He would search the community for “bootleggers”.  There was a roadhouse in our neighborhood which was known as a bootlegging operation.  I can remember the adults telling about it. One day when we were playing by the road a car stopped and asked us about the roadhouse.

 

Did you go to Boehm’s Candies?  What candies were your favorites?

Boehm’s did not come to town until the early fifties.  I never went then.  I don’t go now.

 

What saloons or local bars did you and your friends frequent?

I remember Bill Doherty and Blumberg owning the Union Tavern.  Before that it was called Blumberg’s, then Doherty took it over.  I don’t know if Johnnie’s Tavern was owned by Johnnie Hircko. (The same man who was a partner in Tony and Johnnie’s Grocery.)  Paul Koss owned the Rolling Log Tavern, I think in the thirties.

 

What do you remember about Grange Supply?

That was in more “modern” times.  My brother, Larry, drove truck and delivered oil for them.  It was a co-op that farmers joined.  It was affiliated with the G range Mercantile.  We used to even buy tires there.  But, mainly it was oil, gas and automotive supplies.

 

What do you recall about Lawill’s drug store?

Mr. Lawill was a pharmacist and his wife would help run the store.  They also had a daughter who would help out too.  Before Mr. Stevenson became the postmaster, there was a Stevenson’s Drugstore.  He and his wife Myrtle ran a drugstore.  It was located in the building which became the Shamrock owned by Mike and Rena Shain.

 

What important local political issues of Issaquah are memorable?  Do any particular politicians stand out?  Why are they memorable?  What did they accomplish while in office?

Political issues were usually discussed “behind closed doors”.  I remember Bill Flintoft coming to Issaquah  in the early fifties and later becoming mayor.  I also remember Rem Castagno being one of our mayors.  There was also a Mayor Lee Buck.

 

What do you recall about Mayor Stella Alexander, the first female mayor of Issaquah (elected in 1933)?  Were there any other local politicians or political activities that drew scandalous attention?

I don’t remember anything other than what was written in the paper at that time.

 

Do you recall Ordinance No. 752 that changed most of the street names in town?  What were your feelings about this change at the time?

I remember the names changing and people were not too happy about it.

 

The Great Depression

What are your memories of the Great Depression?  Did you have a job at this time?  What ways did you try to save money?  What did you eat?

Most of our lives were pretty austere, so the depression didn’t seem to make a big impact on my life.  I can remember the Red Cross or some such similar welfare  organizations asking my sister , who was in school, to take a bundle of clothes to a neighbor family.  They only had one child and we thought it strange that they were chosen to receive this welfare package.

I remember getting bread for just five cents.

During this time my father worked at the Grand Ridge Mine.  He would go to work on his bicycle with his lunch pail.

Some of the miners at this time went to Alaska to better work.

I picked strawberries, raspberries and green beans for Al Kerola.  He would sell them to the freezer markets.  I also worked for Vern Bradley picking cucumbers for the pickle factory.  He also hired me to pick filberts. (hazelnuts)

Almost everything was homegrown so our diet did not really change much during this period.

 

How did World War II affect the town of Issaquah?  Did you know men or women who went to fight in the war?  Did you leave Issaquah to join the war efforts?

I know we had a blackout when Pearl Harbor was bombed.  You would have to drive without lights (car).  You had to close the drapes at night so the light would not shine outside.

I think the barber’s son, Clifford Benson was a pilot who was lost in the war.  He went to school with me.

 

How did the Japanese Internment affect Issaquah?  Did you know men and women who were taken to Internment Camps?

I heard about it over the radio, but there were not that many Japanese people living around here. (Issaquah)

 

What kinds of jobs did the War bring to the area?  Where did you work at this time?

Most people had to get into some kind of defense work.  Coal mining was not considered defense work.  My husband had to go work at the shipyard.  I wanted to go work for Boeing, but my husband wanted me to stay at home with my two year old son.

 

Issaquah Round-Up—Salmon Days—Labor Day Celebrations

What do you remember about Labor Day Celebrations or Salmon Days?

It seems like it has rained a lot on many Salmon Days.  The whole town would go the Labor Day parade, but, I’ve never even been to a Salmon Days parade.

 

Was there any year that these celebrations were especially memorable to you?

In 1960, my son, Ron, was in the parade as a fireman from White Center.  I remember getting so mad at him because he took his daughter who was none even one yet and held her while he was driving the fire truck.  I can remember how she bawled, probably because of the noise of the sirens.

 

What special activities were there at Labor Day Celebrations, or at Salmon Days?  How has Salmon Days changed over time?

Labor Day included a parade.  There would be girl scouts, the school band, and home made floats.  I remember our church made a float out of live flowers, and crepe paper.  Sunday school kids would ride on the float.

A carnival would also come to town.  There would be rides, and an arcade with kewpie dolls.  They were a choice prize.  They also had baby ducks as prizes.  On Saturday night there was the Labor  Day Queen’s Ball. Five or six girls would be chosen by the Kiwanis, Chamber of Commerce, Grange, etc.  These girls were asked to sell tickets for a “fund raiser”.  The girl  who sold the most was the Queen.  She would be crowned at the dance in the Firemen’s Hall.  Both of my nieces were Labor Day princesses and Arlene Nikko was Labor Day Queen.  We had a large family in Issaquah and they all bought tickets and helped sell them.

Salmon Days is changed mostly because of becoming commercialized.  Now it’s mostly crafts.   It was also the start of the Kiwanis Salmon Barbecue.

 

What are your memories of the Rodeo?

I was pretty young then so I don’t remember very many details.  Memorial field was fenced in and that’s where the rodeo was.  I remember there were gypsies who came and lived in tents at the rodeo grounds.  These gypsies were fortune tellers and I can remember Henry Bergsma going into one of the tents and when he came out he acted like he had been “ripped off”.  The crowds were large for those days, but it was not commercialized.  I remember looking through the board fence to see the rodeo.

 

Special Occasions

What were some of the other memorable special events and occasions in Issaquah?

On Memorial Day there was a parade of veterans who would march up to the cemetery  and have a special service.  The band would play music.  I remember Tauno and Camilla Erickson , Rod Anderson and Avis Yourglich marching in the parade.  Wives would march with their husbands.  It was quite a hill to march up.

 

Recreation

Did you spend a lot of your free time outside?  What do you remember about fishing, hunting, or hiking in the area?  What was your favorite hiking trail?

I can remember doing chores as a youngster.  One of my worst chores was going “eeling”.  I had to put on my boots and walk through the pasture (where the Sammamish Tennis Club is) to Tibbetts Creek.  I hated walking through the pasture because I was scared of snakes.  We would catch the eels, (actually they were leeches) and sell them to the fishermen for bait.  I hated to touch the leeches.  My dad would tell us we could go home when our buckets were full.

We were mad one day when we were picking berries because we heard fireworks and knew it must be the 4th of July, but, we had to pick berries.

The big treat for the week was to get five cents from Dad on a nice Sunday afternoon and then walk up to the corner store and get some gum.  I can remember my sister Helen walking to the store with me and making me go into the store.  She’d tell me not to get blackjack gum, but since I was only two I would get confused and end up getting blackjack!  She would be so mad!

In the summer we used to go down to Barlow’s property on Lake Sammamish.  We never had swimming lessons.  We would walk out on the dock and along would come some of the older boys and push us off the dock.  That’s how we learned to swim!

We used roam the woods behind and near our house looking for lilies and pussy willows as well as wild blackberries. (Where the Cougar Mountain Zoo now is.)

We never had a lot of free time outside.  I can remember my brother Larry doing the wash and my brother Toivo baking.  My sister and I were too young to to do these things.

Our social life was centered around visiting the neighbors, because we had no cars.

 

What type of fish did you catch?   How many trout did you catch in the Issaquah Creek and what was the biggest?  Did you fish in the kids fishing derby held in Issaquah?  Were your methods for fishing and hunting any different than they are today?

I can remember catching a seven-inch trout with my hands in the creek near where the Lake Sammamish Vet off ice is.  Tibbetts Creek was full of “red fish” in the fall, but they were not salmon.  The creek was full of coal tailings which created the sandbar as it dumped into Lake Sammamish.  I can’t remember any of our family men hunting.

 

What are your memories of Vasa Park?  What did you do while there?

I can remember going to the mid-summer festival in the summer.  The roads were gravel and the cars used to go right by our house to the park and create a lot of dust.  At Camp Sambica they used to have “tent revivals”.  Families would come from Seattle and camp for the weekend.

 

Did you go swimming in the local lakes in the summer?  Or ice-skating at the Horrock’s Farm in the winter?

I can remember going ice skating on Pine Lake in the late 20’s.   My father had bought a second hand (used) 1927 Buick. He didn’t drive so my brother was driving home going down “Snake Hill” or Pine Lake Road by Alexander’s beach.  He rode the brakes all the way down the hill so by the time we got to the bottom of the hill, the car was smoking pretty good.  I don’t think you needed to have driver’s licenses then.

 

Logging and Sawmills

How did the logging industry affect Issaquah?  How did it change?  Did you work in logging?  For what logging camp or sawmill?  What do you remember of your logging days?  What type of machines did you use for logging?  How did you transport logs? How large were these logs?

I remember there use to be a logging camp between I-90 and W. Lake Sammamish Road at the south of Lake Sammamish.  They would have forest fires all the time in the summer. There was a fire behind our house and I can remember one night my Mom an Dad were up all night carrying water in milk cans to our fence line.  There was no “fire department” in those days. I also remember my Mom putting all our clothes in milk cans and setting them down by the road because they were afraid the house might burn.  The fires were just allowed to burn.  I don’t know if they were burning slash or what.  There were several logging camps around the area.  One called Shyler’s (?) on Pine Lake another one on Hobart.

 

Do you remember the Monohon Mill, the Red Hall sawmill by the fish hatchery, the High Point Mill, the Preston Mill, or the Issaquah Lumber Company Mill on Front Street South?

I remember hearing the stream from the Monohon Mill across the lake (Sammamish). There was no traffic noise and sound carries so well over the water.  My brother-in-law, Einer, and his brothers worked in the mill. My son worked there also for a short time. He had gotten a job working on the green chain after he graduated from high school. His job was to feed the lumber into the saw, but he got cut an had to quit because he was too young to be working there. The mill burned down at least three times.

I remember buying lumber from the Preston Mill in the 1940’swhen e built our house.  When the Pearson’s owned the Monohon Mill we bought lumber from them to build another house in the 50’s.  Joe Dodge moved onto the property after that and had a goat farm.

 

Do you remember when there was a fire at the mill?  Did you help fight it?  Did you see the fire?

We saw the Monohon Mill fire from across the lake (Sammamish ).

 

Salmon hatchery

How has the salmon hatchery affected Issaquah?

I don’t remember when the hatchery was built.  I worked there when I was married. I was hired to clip their top fin off to mark the fish.  There were nets over the holding tanks and we just grabbed the minnows.  I remember our boss getting irritated when some of the lady workers almost cut the minnows in half.  You had to be careful to just clip off a fin.

 

Farming and Dairy

Were you involved with farming in Issaquah?  What farm did you work on?  What was grown or raised there?

Yes, I lived on a small ten-acre farm.  We had seven or eight cows and a few chickens.  We sold the milk.  Mom would do the milking morning and night.  The cans were put in a stand out by the road and the milk truck would come by and pick them up and take them to the creamery or it was called the “condensery” We had a large vegetable garden for our own use.  Mom would can the vegetables.  We also sold a few eggs and potatoes to the neighbors.

 

Do you have any memories of Pickering Farm?

I never went there.

 

Did you work at the Issaquah Creamery, or what is now Darigold?

I only worked there for a few weeks as a temporary helper.  I think I worked in the office separating the milk for some kind of testing of the butterfat.  Then I worked on the cottage cheese assembly line possibly putting on the lids.  My boss was Mr. Hemingson.

 

Railroad—Transportation

Did you travel frequently into Seattle?  How did you get there?  What did you do while in Seattle?

I remember going to Seattle via Renton.  We didn’t have a car, so we must have gone with our neighbors, the Barlows.  Then in Renton we took a streetcar that went along Lake Washington.   My aunt lived in Seattle so I can remember going to her house.  We had to change streetcars in Seattle.  The streetcars went on either side. I can remember holding on to my Mom’s hand and being afraid to cross the street. I was scared of the traffic.

 

How did the construction of I-90 change life in Issaquah?

People could travel more quickly to Seattle and find jobs there.  I-90 kind of put Issaquah on the map.  I can remember driving to the toll bridge on I-90, parking my car and taking the bus from the toll plaza.  A lot of people did that.  Before that time, everyone had to go around via Renton.

 

What was your first car?  Did you buy it from Hepler Ford Motors, Stonebridge Chevrolet, or the Kaiser-Frazier dealership?

A 1932 used Chevrolet.  We bought it from S. L. Salvage in Seattle.  I told my husband I wouldn’t marry him until he bought a car.  I think he paid $300.00 for it.  Our first car from Stonebridge was a 1949 Chevrolet.

 

Fraternal Organizations—Local Halls

What are your memories of the fraternal organizations?  Did you belong to the Elks Lodge, or Lions Club, etc?

None of Them

 

Did you attend the Sportsmen’s Club?  Do you remember when it was built in 1937?  What did you do at the Sportsmen’s Club?

It was originally called the “Gun Club.”  The boys in our neighborhood were called the “Hoot Owls” and there was a party for Alvin Kerola at the Gun Club.  Other than that, mostly men went there.

 

What types of events did you attend at the Volunteer Fire Department (VFD) Hall?  Did you use the shooting range located in the basement?

They use to have dances there very Saturday night.  That’s where I met my husband. The place was packed. People came from the surrounding communities. The firemen organized it and they had an orchestra.  Hans Jensen was a regular attendee.  He was quite the bachelor in town and loved to dance (swirl the ladies around)

I never heard of a shooting range in the basement.

During the war, the air raid signal was located at the top to the building.  The local minister of the community church asked if I would “take a turn” at “manning” the air raid station.  I had to go sit there for a number of hours.

Did you attend dinners, dances, banquets, or other events in the upstairs Grange Meeting Hall?

The coal miner’s union use to have a Christmas Party for the families there. They would buy treats and toys of the children.

It was the Grangers would have their annual meeting and fellowship there.

It was the Community Center in the earlier day.

 

Mining

Do you have any memories of Issaquah’s mining days?  Were you involved in mining?

Yes, my father and husband worked in the mines.  My dad worked at Grand Ridge.  My husband, Earl, worked in the Ravensdale Mine.  Superior Plant was located near Mine Hill.  I can remember the rows of houses for the miners.  On State Route 900 there was the Harris Mine and that’s where Mr. Kerola died in a cave in.  I remember his funeral and there was so much snow they couldn’t get to the cemetery.  Further down the Renton – Issaquah road was the Baima Mine.

 

What were the working conditions like in the mine? Which mine did you work for, and what was your job?

I don’t know what the working conditions were like but one time my husband and brother were going to take us to see down one of the air shafts.  We never did go.  I remember there was a mule down in the mine who pulled the coal cars.  The mule never left the mine.

My husband’s job was ”shot lighter”.  He would have to light the dynamite.  He also would bring the coal cars up out of the mine.

 

Entertainment

What movies did you go to see at the Issaquah Theatre (the Old Movie House) to see?  How much did movies cost?  Did you ever go to the back upper corner of the theatre to kiss?

We went to the show with the Bergsma’s.  They would go every week and sometimes  we got to go.  I remember going later on when I took my son, Ron, to see Heidi and Snow White.

I remember when the Brumbergs owned the theater and lived upstairs.  The Brumbergs would walk up and down the aisle policing the audience. Every time their back was turned there were plenty of people smooching in the back.

The first time I went to the theater was for the high school graduation of a friend, Ellen Jussila. I was in grade school at the time.  My Mother gave her a bottle of “Three Flowers” perfume for graduation.  My sister, Helen, had bought it at the drug store.

The original theater in Issaquah was located in the Masonic Hall.  My  Mom went with Mrs. Kerola and my Dad was upset with her.

When the high school had operettas they would walk all the way from the school down to the theater (old Post Office and Masonic Hall) to have their performances.

 

Churches

What church did you attend?  What memories do you have of this church?  Were there any pastors, reverends, or church leaders that stand out in your memory?

I went to the Finnish Church with my parents.  That was in the 30s.  It might have started out as a Methodist Church.  Then some Finnish families bought the Church. A Congregational pastor would come out twice a month.

In the 40’s when I moved to downtown Issaquah, I started to attend the Community Church. Mr. and Mrs. Dahlby were the pastors.  Mr. Dahlby had Parkinson’s.  Then Rev. Bill Reed was the pastor.  And Bob Larson followed him.  Russell Hendrickson came next and then Dick Birdsall.

I really remember Bill Reed because he started the “Golden Age Group” and the youth groups. Church members flourished.

 

Additional Memories

I can remember having to go “watch the cows”. I was about 8 or 9 years old.  I had to make sure of the cows didn’t wander over in the other part of the field. This was kind of a boring job so the Olsen sisters who were older would give me a “True Story ”magazine.  The were probably the precursor of “True Confessions” and even my sister Helen would “sneak and read” them upstairs Saturday morning when she was suppose to be cleaning.  I can remember my Mom calling upstairs and asking Helen what was she doing because it was so quiet.

I remember Koski’s chicken farm located on the old Sunset Hwy.  My two brothers Toivo and Larry use to work there cleaning out the chicken coops.  They use to ride there on their bicycles.  Later on, my brother also worked for Bergsma’s Dairy and Barlows in a little house and milked cows.

There was also the Englebright farm.  It was located near Pickerings farm.  The Englebright Farm became the C.W. Peters Farm.. They were both dairy farms.  I can remember the dinner bell ringing at the Englebrights out over the valley when I was a youngster.

Back to the Memory Books

Kyle & Jeff Hjelm

Name: Kyle and Jeff Hjelm

Education—Coming of Age

What are your memories of Issaquah High School?  Which teachers were influential?

J:  Football games on a grass field.

Wrestling teams that never lost a match.

 

Where did you and your friends spend your free time as teenagers?  What kind of mischief did you get into?  How did your parents or teachers punish you when you got into trouble?

J: We had weekend parties at Round Lk. Everybody that had 4-wheel drives hauled us up there. Then the police got themselves an R.V. and they joined in the fun.

 

Local businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?

J: Western Auto on Sunset – sporting goods.

Coast to Coast off Gilman & QFC shopping center.

Highway 10 Lumber.

Johnny’s Grocery – Front Street

Hi-Lo Grocery

 

Did you purchase things at the Grange Mercantile Building?  What type of things did you get there?  Did your family rent a frozen food storage locker?

J: Yes. We had a food locker there.

 

What restaurants or soda shops did you enjoy going to?  Did you go to Rena’s Café, or XXX Root beer?  What was your favorite food?  Were there memorable waiters or waitresses?

J: XXX Drive In

Fasano’s

Pick’s

K:I went to XXX and my favorite food – ’58 Impala

 

Did you go to Boehm’s Candies?  What candies were your favorites?

K:Yes, I went to Boehm’s Candies and my favorite candy was their fudge.

 

Issaquah Round-Up—Salmon Days—Labor Day Celebrations

What do you remember about Labor Day Celebrations or Salmon Days?

K:One Salmon Day I would go with my grandpa and grandma and we would buy some of those balloon dogs.

 

Was there any year that these celebrations were especially memorable to you?

K:Yes. I remember the first time I went to Salmon Days. I remember the huge salmon swimming in Issaquah river.

 

Outdoor Recreation

Did you spend a lot of your free time outside?  What do you remember about fishing, hunting, or hiking in the area?  What was your favorite hiking trail?

J:Walking up to Round Lake. Lk. Tradition area. Hunting deer behind the high school and all over Squak Mt. Fishing in Issaquah Creek in the summer.

Hiking across railroad trestle at east end of town over I-90.

 

What type of fish did you catch?   How many trout did you catch in the Issaquah Creek and what was the biggest?  Did you fish in the kids fishing derby held in Issaquah?  Were your methods for fishing and hunting any different than they are today?

J:Lots of trout, cutthroat, 16” long

 

Salmon hatchery

How has the salmon hatchery affected Issaquah?

K:The salmon hatchery has affected Issaquah by spending all the money on the new fish hatchery instead of anything else.

 

Farming and Dairy

Do you have any memories of Pickering Farm?

J:Using the horse track to work out horses.

 

Railroad—Transportation

What was your first car?  Did you buy it from Hepler Ford Motors, Stonebridge Chevrolet, or the Kaiser-Frazier dealership?

J:1974 Chev Vega Wagon

 

Additional Memories

K:I remember my first year of Little League and hitting 800.

Linda Adair Hjelm

Name: Linda Adair Hjelm

Education — Coming of Age

What are your memories of Issaquah High School?  Which teachers were influential? 

Mr. Treat.

 

What memories do you have of Minnie Schomber, or another favorite teacher?

In the 5th grade, Louie Orth introduced me to individual rights.  He told us that we had the right to our opinions and the right to express them!  It was the first time I ever heard my mother threaten to throttle anyone.  It wasn’t the last.

Many years later, Lonnie and I, went to our daughter’s  “Welcome to 7th Grade Math” evening.  There behind the desk stood Louie Orth.

My mother smiled.  He was a good math teacher, too!

 

Were you affected by earthquake damage to the schools in 1949 or 1965?

Yes, in 1949 I was leaving the lunchroom when the earthquake began.  My Dad, a Seattle fireman always taught me safety issues, so I knew I was supposed to go “out in back” behind the school building where there were no power lines.  I looked at the path I’d have to tae and cringed.  A three-story brick building and a wood shop swayed with the quake.  Between the two was a 6” diameter pipe that looked to be made of concrete.  I could just hear Dad yelling at me if I went under that pipe.  Before I had to decide, Dad pulled up to the curb.

 

Where did you and your friends spend your free time as teenagers?  What kind of mischief did you get into?  How did your parents or teachers punish you when you got into trouble?

Rena’s for pie. Shamrock for boys.  Stayed away from Drylies but he never smiled.  Always seemed to be grouch.

 

Local businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?

Grange Mercantile Grocery- frozen food lockers- building immediately south of Creamery.  I remember mostly Pick Pickering, the manager.  He was very kind to a small, shy girl.

 

What barbershop or beauty shop did you frequent?  What do you remember about these places?  What were the popular hairdos when you frequented the beauty shop?  Did you do a lot of socializing at the barber and beauty shops?

In our era, beauty shops weren’t the “in” thing.  I had lots of hair, Mom would give me home permanents but when she was only half way through the solution on that half had been on too long, but the second half hadn’t been rolled into curlers.  It made for lots of tension and strange hairdos.

 

Where did you go to buy your groceries?  Did you go to Tony and Johnny’s, or RR Grocery on East Sunset? Do you remember your favorite clerk?  Were there any items that these grocers specialized in?

Joan Karvia was my favorite clerk at the Grange Serv-U.

 

What do you remember about Grange Supply?

Dan Boni delivered oil, not Grange Supply.

 

What do you recall about Lawwil’s drug store?

Lou Lawwil was a very kind man and carried lots of good comic books.  Wonder Woman was a favorite.

 

The Great Depression

What are your memories of the Great Depression?  Did you have a job at this time?  What ways did you try to save money?  What did you eat? 

The Depression was before my time but the effects weren’t.  It was more important to have money in the Bank than have lots of pretty things.  When I was 10, we were school shopping at Grayson’s in Seattle.  I found a brown accordion pleated skirt that cost $11.  It was the most expensive item of clothing I’d ever gotten.  After much discussion between Mom and I, she decided I could have the skirt, but only because she could wear it too!

 

World War II

How did World War II affect the town of Issaquah?  Did you know men or women who went to fight in the war?  Did you leave Issaquah to join the war efforts?

I had two Uncles in the War.  I didn’t really know them well enough to miss them.

My Grandmother and I went on air raid watches which were done on top of the old Fire Hall (where the Library is in 2001).  There was a long stairway and railing to the roofline but only a ladder hooked to the roof led to a room at the ridgeline where we watched.  I remember vividly looking south down the valley totally baffled that this word “war” I kept hearing could possibly invade the air space above my safe home.

 

How did the Japanese Internment affect Issaquah?  Did you know men and women who were taken to Internment Camps?

I have one other memory of WWII.  I was standing on the sidewalk in Kirkland, my hand in Mom’s.  A man was running down the sidewalk yelling, “The War is over! The War is over!”  I looked at mom and tears were running down her face.  I had never seen this happen.  I then noticed the same thing on other adult faces.

 

Issaquah Round-Up– Salmon Days– Labor Day Celebrations

What do you remember about Labor Day Celebrations or Salmon Days?

It seems as if all summer long we did anything we (kids in the neighborhood) would do anything we could to earn money for Labor Day.  We had talent shows for our families but not much talent was available.

One year I had taken baton lessons and was somehow was asked to lead the parade with Jeannie Njos.  I was pretty impressed.  One booth at the Carnival was a fishing booth (all fake) that had a statue of a baton twirler as a prize.  I spent every dime I had earned in that booth over a period of three days and every dime I could talk my family out of.  Finally, the last night…the carnival was shutting down and still I hadn’t won that statue.  I was broken hearted.  As Dad lead me away, I heard the men in the booth call us.  He gave me the statue.

 

Was there any year that these celebrations were especially memorable to you?

See above

 

Outdoor Recreation

Did you spend a lot of your free time outside?  What do you remember about fishing, hunting, or hiking in the area?  What was your favorite hiking trail? 

Hiking when I was a child wasn’t considered recreation.  In many cases it was a necessity.  If you wanted to go somewhere, you walked.  There were 5 areas that were considered off-limits.  They didn’t require Keep Out signs.  These were the slag dumps from the old mines.  They continued to smoke.

 

What type of fish did you catch?   How many trout did you catch in the Issaquah Creek and what was the biggest?  Did you fish in the kids fishing derby held in Issaquah?  Were your methods for fishing and hunting any different than they are today?

One Saturday morning I went fishing with my Grandad, Archie Adair, at Alexander’s Beach on Lake Sammamish.  After a couple of hours I hooked a big one!  All the men yelled their best secrets for landing fish.  I was so excited I put my right hand on the butt and my left hand about 18” higher and rammed my right hand toward the lake.  This had the effect of sailing the fish back over my head into the wall of the cabin.  The men weren’t impressed but I had landed my fish….all 24” of him.

 

What are your memories of Vasa Park?  What did you do while there? 

We roller-skated there, but it was rather unremarkable.

 

Did you go swimming in the local lakes in the summer?  Or ice-skating at the Horrock’s Farm in the winter?

For years we only swam in the creek.  No adult had time to take us anywhere else.  If you could swim upstream against the current, you could swim pretty well.

Later Dad bought me a used bike (It was a really good bike).  All of us would ride down to Alexander’s.  There was no State Park, boat launch, or swimming pool.  All went well until we were on the way home on Front Street near the Villa.  The change in elevation is considerable and deceptive and the bike awfully heavy.  I don’t think I was ever able to ride to the top of that hill and home.  I always ended up walking.

 

Logging and Sawmills

Do you remember the Monohon Mill, the Red Hall sawmill by the fish hatchery, the High Point Mill, the Preston Mill, or the Issaquah Lumber Company Mill on Front Street South?

The Red Hall Mill, yes, but only that it was there.

 

Salmon hatchery

How has the salmon hatchery affected Issaquah?

It reduced the number of fish in the Issaquah Creek, considerably.  I could fish there as a kid.  Later there weren’t any fish of legal size to catch.

 

Railroad– Transportation

Did you travel frequently into Seattle?  How did you get there?  What did you do while in Seattle?

My Grandmother, Chattie Adair, used to take me to Seattle on the bus on Saturday.  We’d have lunch at Ben Paris Restaurant, buy a gardenia from a street vender, then go to the Palomar Theatre.  The first time I saw Sally Rand, the fan dancer, I was about 10.  No one told me there was anything “wrong” with burlesque.  I thought the point of the act was the strategic placement of the fans.

 

How did the construction of I-90 change life in Issaquah?

It opened the door to the world.

 

What was your first car?  Did you buy it from Hepler Ford Motors, Stonebridge Chevrolet, or the Kaiser-Frazier dealership?

55 Ford from Jerry Malone Ford

 

Fraternal Organizations– Local Halls

Did you attend the Sportsmen’s Club?  Do you remember when it was built in 1937?  What did you do at the Sportsmen’s Club?

I remember going to Turkey Shoots at the Gun Club.  I never heard it called the Sportsmen’s Club until after 1990.  It seemed to be more of a gambling affair than shooting turkeys, though my Uncle always came home with one.

 

Did you attend dinners, dances, banquets, or other events in the upstairs Grange Meeting Hall?

Yes.  Many years after our family was too large to celebrate holidays in one house, we had Christmas upstairs.

 

Entertainment

What movies did you go to see at the Issaquah Theatre (the Old Movie House) to see?  How much did movies cost?  Did you ever go to the back upper corner of the theatre to kiss? 

As long as it was Roy Rogers and Dale Evans I didn’t care.  Cost was maybe 20¢  You were supposed to move? 🙂

 

Churches

What church did you attend?  What memories do you have of this church?  Were there any pastors, reverends, or church leaders that stand out in your memory?

My cousins and I went to church at the Bethel Mission with our great grandmother, Ellen Bonnar.  Then, one Sunday morning, a new feature was added an older man sat in the front row, first space.  We kids were told to line up and pass by him.  When I got to him, I was told to show him my fingernails to make sure I wasn’t wearing any fingernail polish.  If I had nail polish on, that meant I was a sinner.  My mother had beautiful hands and nails and wore polish.  I knew she wasn’t a sinner.  That was the last time I attended that church.

Vivan Ayers Hofto

Name: Vivian Ruth Ayers (Hofto)

 

Your history in Issaquah/How long lived here, etc.:

1914-1918

 

If you moved to Issaquah, why did you choose it?

Father to work in the mine

 

Issaquah or area school(s) attended:

1st , 2nd, 3rd grades – started 1916

 

Additional Memories

We moved to Issaquah from Black Diamond, WA. In 1914, a family of six.  George D. Ayers and wife Jane Dunn Ayers and four children. Twins George and William, a daughter Vivian Ruth and a baby Arthur Clifford.

The house was located in town next to a brick building (telephone or electric) ?  This house and the one next door were old and the wood was weathered and black and had a metal gate between them.  The porch was right on the board walk and had a slat fence all along.  I remember the gate because I used to try to get out to follow my father when he went off to work.  We couldn’t get off the front porch either because of the slat fence a foot above the walk.

We hadn’t lived there very long  before father found a four room house with a bath house at the top of the hill behind the mine.  We were in the woods the last house on the hill before the houses were built down the hill on the left side.  They were on a bank and had steps from the road to get up on the ground to the houses.    We learned a lot there as there were so many wild animals, many bugs and bees.

One day I saw a skunk and her babies walking up the path that led to the “outhouse”.  I started to run to pick up a “kitten”, but my father was putting wire up for a chicken yard, and he came and picked me up and said, “Those are skunks and we don’t want to bother them or we’ll get more of their “perfume”.  We already had enough from them getting under the house where father had a small root cellar.  He had to try to get rid of them.

Then the weasels discovered the chickens, we would find many on the chicken house floor all died a horrible death.  But finally some of the weasels were caught in traps.

Father always loved a nice garden and beautiful flowers.  So the path to the “out house”, which was always scrubbed thoroughly each week, had flowers both sides of the path.

The twins were always thinking of something to do, so one day I saw them cupping their hands over a flower then they would open their hands above their heads and a bee would fly out.  Well, I thought that would be fun for me, so I finally got a bee on my palm but I clamped my other palm on top of the bee. So — I learned a bee can be mean.  Mother put soda on it.

A huge patch of “stinger nettles” six foot high were growing in a space on the other side of the house.  William found out that they sting and hurt, so he picked a branch and ran to the swing where neighbor children were playing with us.  He stung all of us and I ran into the house crying, Mother came out picked a branch and stung William and he learned a lesson that day.

Our Father didn’t want more trouble with that patch so he dug the roots out and planted a nice vegetable garden there.

Father found a nice bungalow down the hill from the mine.  There were about ten of them all painted tan.  They had no porch, just three steps and you went right in the door. A fence was mailed to the board side walk with a gate for each house.  I had a room, a small one between the two bedrooms.  Today that room would be a bathroom.  The bath house and outhouse were in the back.  Ours was the second house coming up the hill on the left side.  Joey Hinds or Hines lived in the first and the Buckholtz lived on the other side of us, the third house.  Up next to the bungalow, there was a new family who moved in and their name was Goodwin , had a son and daughter.

On the other side of the street some of the houses were painted white or gray and some had steps that led up a little bank from the board walk to their houses. Names of some those people were – Tuttle – Darby – Parker, and Lee.

I was about five now and noticing everything and about ready to go in the first grade.  This lady named Mrs. Lee had to go down to the store so she asked if I would stay with her baby and she would hurry back.  I remember the baby, Annabelle cried the whole time her mother was gone.  I made funny faces, patted her on the head, to no avail.  So that was my first job, baby sitting.

One day Joey Hines, Clifford and I were playing out in the road, suddenly we heard a clopping sound and a lot of noise.  Mother heard it too, so she ran out and brought us into the yard and fastened the gate.  Then we saw two large horses coming over the top of the hill.  They must have been frightened or broke loose from the coal wagon because they had the harness on.  As they reached our area, one stumbled and the other screamed and screamed and fell on top of the other.  All you could see was legs flying in the air and that awful screeching.  I’ll never forget those poor horses.  They had to shoot both of them.  I know that that is why I’ve always been frightened of horses.  I can only watch the races on T.V.  I can’t stand to hear them neigh, but I love to paint horses by photographs or if they are far enough away and fenced.

Florence Parker who lived across the street from us, asked my mother if she could take me to school.  So mother put my nice new velvet dress on me and a big hair ribbon to match and my new patent leather slippers.  I was so happy to go to school – but I was a little disappointed because the desk was so high I couldn’t see sitting beside her, so I crunched down and peeked out underneath.  We have her “graduation exercises” card 1919.  Then they were moving away and she called me over to her house and gave me the cutest little German made doll that she had played with on the seashore in England.  It had sand and seashells in the box and my mother let me play with it – but I had to always put it back in the box.  I’m so glad our mother taught us to appreciate anything given to us as it is a fine antique about a hundred years old now.

William and George loved to fish in the creek and they brought some nice trout for mother to fry in the big cast iron fry pan.  I have never liked the smell of fish and I would only eat the crispy tails.

Some of the neighbors would join us for a picnic at the creek.  One lady had been to Seattle and had purchased some new cookies I had never seen.  She asked me if I would like to have one.  Of course, I was glad to say yes.  They were large pink marshmallow with white coconut on top.  The boys gobbled theirs up, but I just took tiny nibbles really enjoyed it.

Our father worked on one of the schools, but I don’t know which one.

George and William had already been in school before me, so I don’t know their first and second grade teachers names – I caught up to them when they were in third grade.  They missed many classes, if one got sick – the other one did so they were home a lot.

I was so happy to go to school and I liked my teacher in first grade.  Her name was Miss Mae Master. She always had a nice smile and a nice white blouse and dark skirt.

When I passed into second grade, the teacher seemed older, I think she wore a hair net on her head, but I liked her too.  One day when we came in from recess, my hands were cold, so I put them up under my armpits and went to my seat and sat down.  Soon I heard her tap a ruler on her desk and said, “Ruth stand up! Why do you have your hands like that? You look like a kangaroo!”

The third grade teacher’s name was Miss Sterling and she was very pretty and had such a nice disposition.  She gave my brothers each a nice little book and me a nice etching of a deer in the woods.  Mother had us keep them nice, so I just sent them to my niece and nephew for their grandchildren.  The gifts are antiques now.

Those first three grades with such good teachers were the start of my art career, as I used to have some of my work put up on the board.  I remember how they liked a bowl of pansies I painted.  I think another girl used to draw, her name was Margaret McQuade.

The school piciures have many classmates I remember.  Here they are – Agnes Hall, Doty Berry, Esther Garner, Ellen Bloomquist or Brumquist, Limpey ?, Margaret McQuade, Albert Jenson and there were three Muglot boys John – Frank and Ed.

The butcher was another one who really helped me in my art career.  When my father would go grocery shopping he generally took me along.  He would go to the butcher shop and the butcher always gave me a weiner and a large piece of butcher paper to draw on.  I wish I knew his name. But I would draw lines across and others down the paper, so I had all squares.  I would draw flowers or parts of animals or my own hand and etc., in each square.  I always did this until my adult life.

We didn’t have buses to take us to school.  We all had to walk, even through high school. There were two ways for us to walk to school.  One was to walk down the mine road over a sort of bridge of logs with gravel on it.  There must have been a small stream of water from the side hill and it made a soft spot there so they put that bridge like road in so the wagons or horses could go over it.  They do that on all logging roads. Mr. Kettle, the mine boss lived on that hillside on the left. My father used to plant his vegetable garden and the potatoes.  After passing his house we would go on down to the park and turn right to our school.

Sometimes we couldn’t go that way because the gypsies were camped in the park, so we were told to go the other way, which was to go up the mine hill past all the tan bungalows, turn left and go down a rocky steep path behind the houses.

One day William didn’t walk on the board walk, but ran out on the grassy field, all at once he was gone. We called and ran back, then we heard him calling for help, he had fallen through the grass into a mine shaft.  We ran around trying to find someone.  Luckily a man had just come out of his house, he soon found men who went into the mine and brought William out, all bruised and frightened.  He was home for a week and we were all late for school that day.

We were always in plays and all of the students loved it.  Our mother had to make all the costumes for me.  I was to be in a Swedish part of a play, so my mother had to make a Swedish  costume by a picture they had her copy.  She took me with her to Mr. Coutts’ store to buy the material.  I think my folks bought clothes there too.  I think it was located further down the street on the left side.

When mother needed some small item she would ask me to go to the store.  I was about six and a half or seven and my mother needed some butter and asked me to go for it.  Clifford and I had been seeing things in her jewelry box and had our little fingers in a pearl ring when she called “get a wiggle on, I need butter”.  So we went down the hill and over the trestle to the boardwalk about a foot off the walk so we had to climb up on the old boards, the ring fell off our fingers and fell through a big open crack.  Some men standing there by a barber shop asked us what we were looking for, we were in tears – but they tore the boards off – but said they couldn’t find the ring.  So we went on to the grocery store and by then Clifford said he was hungry.  I saw big barrels all around the room and peeking into one I found crackers so I stood on tip toe and brought a cracker to give him. Soon I heard footsteps and a loud gruff voice said, “What are you doing stealing my crackers? I’m going to tell your dad.”  I learned another lesson that day.

My father took me to a jewelry store to buy me a ring and the man’s name was Wilfong.  He sold my dad a sapphire ring and when we got home – my mother said I was too young for a nice sapphire ring.  That week we went to my grandparents in Black Diamond and over Tiger or Cougar Mountain I can’t remember, and we saw an animal jump up over a log.  My father called out, “A timber wolf”.  It was a beautiful big animal.  But when we arrived at grandma’s house some of my cousins were there, so I started to move my hands across my grandfathers well trimmed boxwood hedge to show my ring, but it fell off into the hedge.  Everyone came out to look for it, but we never found it.  The hedge is still there, but almost as tall as the house. So mother was right I was too young to have a ring like that.

I remember our Mother mentioning a Mr. Hoover and about shortages of food, sugar especially because we didn’t have sugar to put on our rolled oat mush at breakfast.

Then Father was very ill and nearly died with that awful flu during the World War One.  Many people died as it spread over the nation.

One day Father came home from the mine with his hands all burned, there had been a fire in the mine.  The Doctor ordered “Oil of Salts”, and it did cure the burns, but it seemed oil of salts was used on everything after that.  It was an oil, a pale yellow color. I never hear of it any more.

Now people are rejoicing because the war is over and they wanted to celebrate.  Someone knew that Clifford had a soldier suit, so they bandaged his leg and arm, put a patch over a fake wound on his head, put him in a stretcher with four men carrying it down the street through some stores then back up to the park.  They had already made a big bonfire ready to light when all the people finally circled the area as they had a man made of straw.  It was Kaiser Wilhelm.  They started the bonfire and that was the end of the Kaiser Wilhelm.

Father was a fire boss in the mine, so he must have had a job offer in Newcastle.  We had a  brand new Moore 30 car maroon red color and it could really climb the hills, everyone liked it.

Our house had five rooms plus a pantry, a wash house, outhouse, chicken coop, a garage and a barn.  So we had chickens, pigeons, a cow and her calf.  Some times the milk would have a skunk cabbage flavor so we had to go up in the field and chase them away from that wet area.

There were many Swedish and Norwegian, Italian and Irish near us.  Some of the names were, Berg, Jakobson, Wickman, Anderson, Olson, Rask, Rounds, and Belmondo, Evans, Murphy, and others such as Niemi, Radman and Jensen and Isaccson.  Many of these went to Seattle and became well known there.  These were all on the hill above the mine.  Others like the Fee’s, the Flick’s, etc. were on a street near town.  A black boy who lived near town where Ida and Joe Biamo lived and there were others who came from that area, a nice looking black girl whose name was Nellie.  Her mother kept her dressed so neat and nice in a white blouse and dark skirt.  The boys name was Freddie Venetti.

Our fourth grade teacher’s name was Miss Pierce and the fifth grade teachers name was Mrs. Guillespi.

I really liked that school grounds they even had the girls baseball team – and we ran relay races.  So many things outside.

Miss Pierce had me in a play at The Moore 30 in Seattle.  It was Madame Butterfly.  They had my hair all swirled Japanese style on top of my head, chopsticks in my hair.  But I had big eyes so they took tape and pulled the lids back and put powder on to cover the tapes.  I had a real pretty blue kimono.  I sang Japanese Sandman.  We had to be in a play at some place in Seattle a Metropolitan or some name like that. It was fun.

The Newcastle mine had a miner’s bathhouse. A long gray building with many stalls.  There were some days they let the women and children go there to bathe.  I was asked to go with a friend and her mother.  I wasn’t used to bathing that way.  We always had a large galvanized tub in the hot room and water from a boiler on the stove.

There was a large pond down by the mine and some of the boys would go there to swim.  But when we moved to Uniontown we walked up the railroad track to a Lake Boren.  We always called it Lost Lake.  We heard a train had fallen in the lake years ago.  When we were diving for cold cream jars, they were white, so we could see them, we saw a lot of iron things in the muddy bottom and a big bell like they had on old trains.

The mine was on strike so houses were built below Newcastle and the town was called Uniontown.  That was the first time I had heard of commissary a place where food was doled out to the families.  So we ate beans, I remember how to take the little rocks out of the beans.  We had to eat many cans of salmon, sardines and etc.  Luckily our father had a nice garden full of good vegetables and potatoes.

Our school wasn’t far from home there, and there were several grades in one big room with a tall pot bellied stove in the room.  A long black board on one side.  I can’t remember that teachers name, but she was a bit older than others we had.   She had a hand bell she would ring to call us into the classroom.

That is where we had to hop over a tiny little sliver of water where a garter snake tried to bite at you. He never left that spot.

Matt Lux and wife Nellie and my folks used to go somewhere to purchase tomatoes by a big apple box full so they could can them.  They had two children, a daughter Helen and son Bobbie. They moved to Renton and Bobbie became quite a fine bowler.

When there was nothing to do, a group of youngsters would walk all the way to the Coal Creek Road that went on down the hill into Renton.  Where our road met the Coal Creek Road, there was always fresh washed gravel, put on our road to Newcastle, that is where we would find all kinds of agates – in just a few minutes.  We were lucky there weren’t many people traveling at that time.

My Father used to take me with him to buy strawberries on a farm where Bellevue is now such a nice town.  The Newcastle, Kirkland, Kennydale and etc. had a get together every so often.  I was there once and they all remembered me, but also my father taught them baseball and they remembered Mom’s good cookies.

From Uniontown we went on to Mine Five between Roslyn and Cle Elum. We went to seventh and eighth grades there and only about three blocks to school.  About three grades in a large room with a huge pot bellied stove in the middle of the room.  We had to pass a state exam in order to go to high school in Cle Elum three or more miles away.  We all passed and enjoyed that school, but it was hard when I was put into schools one-act plays etc.  One of my brothers had to stay to walk home at night.  It was generally dark at 4:30 during the winters and a lot of snow and coyotes howling around us.  It was quite scary. I won many contests making posters for the town and some of the merchants had me draw a lily or something for their advertising pages.  I got fifty cents each.

We would come over to Sumner to pick berries at my Uncle’s place by the river to buy our school clothes.

Back to the Memory Books

Monita Horn

Kevin Horn, Gwyyn Finney, Pammy McLoughlin, and Kurt Horn wave to a passing train, 1967. Photo by Monita Horn.

Kevin Horn, Gwyyn Finney, Pammy McLoughlin, and Kurt Horn wave to a passing train, 1967. Photo by Monita Horn.

Name:Monita Horn

Birth date: February 1938

We have lived in Issaquah since August 1964, which now amounts to thirty-five years.  We moved here because Jimmy got a job as a teacher in the high school teaching a course in electricity in Ken Schmelzer’s department.  Jimmy also had to teach five classes in basic math.  After two years, Jimmy left teaching and eventually got a job with Puget Sound Power & Light as a draftsman in Renton.  He worked up to Distribution Engineer, working in Renton and Des Moines.  Eventually he became a Standard’s Engineer with his office in Bellevue where he stayed until he was “rifed” in 1992.  He was able to get on as a Standard’s Engineer with Seattle City Light in 1993.

We first lived on Rainier Way in a rental house.  My oldest child attended a co-op preschool in town.  One of the ladies said they were selling their house and would I be interested.  I told my husband and we discussed it.  Then we called and asked to see the place on Bush Street.  We were able to put down earnest money first and started the legal process including a title search, which took a while.  When the house cleared, we went on to purchase it and moved in.

We stayed here, partly because we both grew up in one place and we liked the idea of staying in one place.  Puget Power prefers that its employees move around to different parts of the company but we did not do that.  Jimmy took jobs in the company that he could commute to.  The fact that the schools had a special Education section was also very important for our oldest boy.

I did not attend any Issaquah schools but my children went clear through the education system.  The two younger ones attended Clark Elementary School, Issaquah Middle School and Issaquah High School.  The oldest boy attended Issaquah Valley Elementary.  He had to take the bus there, since we had moved by that time.

My children have not stayed in Issaquah because it is too expensive.  Kurt is moved around from one Adult Family home to another.  He is presently in North Seattle.  Kevin joined the Navy and went through training and then entered the reserve.  He is married and has three children.  He and his wife, Tanja, and family live in Tacoma where he works for Nally’s and his wife will be a certified math teacher by summer.  Keith and his wife, Sarah, live in North Seattle.  Sarah works in downtown Seattle for Bank of America and Keith works for Kenworth just north of 520.

 

My Contribution to Issaquah history: Memory Book 2001

I was born in Spokane, Washington hospital in 1938 and spent my first eighteen years in Coulee Dam, Washington.  Then I continued my education at WSU where I met my husband, Jimmy S. Horn.  He graduated from WSU in 1964 and got a job in Issaquah.  We have been here ever since.

Every summer when I was a child we traveled to Western Washington to visit relatives.  (While I was growing up we never took a vacating except to visit relatives.)  The highway past North Bend at this time was two-lane and the trees seemed to almost touch overhead.  On the way we would go through Issaquah.  If we were lucky we got to stop and visit the fish hatchery.  My Dad says we also stopped at what would have been Gibson Hall, to eat lunch and play on the playground.  I do not remember stopping there.  When we were older we studied the map and I finally got it clear that we came down the highway (Sunset Way) and when we reached a white building (the little tavern on the SW corner of Sunset and Newport Way) we turned right and passed some fields for a ways, then when we reached another white building (at Goode’s Corner) we turned down what is now SR 900 and eventually reached the smoking slag piles at Coalfield and then on to the government housing in Renton highlands.  (This would have been in the 1940’s.)

We came to Issaquah in 1964 but the groundwork was laid long before.  Jimmy’s father, William Horn, was a teacher.  He was a superintendent in Fairfield, Washington when Mr. Tom Deering was a teacher under him.  Billy also spent time in Colville before returning to WSU to get a Masters in Education, while he was training teachers in the same field.  Unfortunately, he died of a systemic infection caused by infected teeth in 1936.  His children grew up, and Eloise, Jimmy’s sister, and husband taught in Waitsburg, Washington.  While there, they used Jackie Deering as a baby-sitter.  When Jimmy applied for a job teaching in Issaquah, Mr. Tom Deering was the superintendent.  That may or may not have had an effect on his being hired.  Our children attended Clark Elementary, and Jackie Deering McBride was a teacher there, although my children never had her as a teacher.

At the time Jimmy was teaching, short skirts were in vogue.  Some of the girls sat in the front row and were not careful about the way they sat.  Jimmy said he spent a lot of time looking at the back of the room when he lectured!

Jimmy was a teacher at the new high school when the earthquake occurred in April 1965.  He had never felt an earthquake before, but he knew what it was.  He took his students outside.  There was only minor damage to the high school.

I was eight months pregnant and had gone back to bed for a bit.  I sat up in bed and watched the curtains sway back and forth.  By the time I figured out what was going on it had stopped.  Some bricks were knocked off our chimney.  Late the next fall, when the temperature was below freezing, the gasman discovered that a brick had fallen inside the chimney reducing the air circulation and he turned off our gas.  I cleaned out the soot and brick through the circular clean out on the chimney.  I never knew soot could be so dirty!  We got our gas turned on a week later.

When we came to town the Mercantile was still going strong.  Since we lived on Rainier Way it was a natural to walk across the railroad tracks and shop there.  Most of the time I took the kids red wagon and walked over to the store, bought my groceries, and pulled then home in the wagon, holding on to the kid or kids.  I always enjoyed talking to the butchers who included Jack Couzyn, Don Finney, and Dan Kramer.  The clerks were Joan Karvia (Walter), and Imogene Woodside, among others.  One year was very hot, and I grew a number of large pumpkins in my garden.  The store bought my excess at about 3cents a pound.  I saw my first dead person there.  Even as a young woman, I had never been to a funeral.  While I was shopping, an elderly man keeled over and died.  I remember walking by him and he was quite yellow.  There was a little commotion as the clerks called Flintofts to come get him.  Yes, we rented a frozen food locker there.  We had a small wooden slat cubical with our own padlock on it.  We froze mostly fruit and vegetables, but occasionally meat was stored there.  When the mercantile went out of business we were forced to buy an upright freezer in which to store our food.

The Mercantile went out of business, at least partly, because a new bridge was built on Front Street (10th Avenue) over the creek and the street was blocked off for about three months.  It was long enough to change people’s shopping habits and soon after the bridge reopened the store closed.  About the same time, the new shopping center opened at Front and Sunset.  The new buyer moved some of the merchandise from the Mercantile down to the new location.  Certainly, the store was serviced by the same warehouse.

Since I grew up in a town with no railroad, I enjoyed watching the train go by every day.  I think it went north about 9 or 10 in the morning and south around 3 to 4 in the afternoon.  It would haul open boxcars full of wood chips covered with “cheesecloth” to keep the chips from flying that were headed to Longview to the mill.  It also carried wrapped packages of plywood on flat cars, and some lumber on flat cars.  There usually were a few cars of logs heading out – to another mill or for export.  The Darigold plant received cornstarch and corn syrup from Iowa.  One of these arrived in red tank cars.  There were also blue tank cars full of sugar syrup from Utah.  Boxcars full of cardboard boxes to put the butter in also arrived.  (The plant made ice cream mix, yogurt and butter.)  Occasionally, a flat car full of plasterboard would arrive which was unloaded and stored by somebody in the old Depot.  Then the train would go back and forth across Front Street as it switched the car on to the siding by the Depot.  At that time the trains still had cabooses with brakemen.  They served as lookouts for traffic, etc.  When we moved to Bush Street I could still hear the train, but it took a definite effort to go where I could see it.

We almost never went out except, perhaps, to a drive in.  A few times we went to Fasano’s where we could get good American food, including a crab salad.  That was much later, when we had more money to spend – say the late 1970’s or early 1980’s.

I discovered Boehm’s Candies when I was out walking.  Sometimes the boys and I would go by it and buy a quarter’s worth of broken chocolates as a treat.  At that time, a quarter bought maybe ten pieces.  At Christmas time we would spend a few dollars on chocolates.  (1964-1968)

About the time we came here the Rexall Drug Store was newly purchased by Mr. Dick Seek.  He was a cheerful and pleasant man who would go out of his way to help you.  His store used to be on Front Street where the florist shop is now (2000).  Later, it also moved down to the new shopping center on Front and Sunset.  It went out of business in 1995 because Dick was going deaf and neither of his sons wanted to take over the business.  They had grown up with it, and like farming, running a store is an everyday proposition.

When we first came in August 1964, Issaquah still had a dime store on Front Street about where the Art store is now.  After two or three years it went out of business.  One of the owners (Mrs. Dalbotten ?) then opened a small fabric and notions store across the street.  After a couple years when it did well, she moved the store across the street to half of her previous location.  That store prospered and I bought a lot of material and notions there since I did a lot of sewing for myself.  After, maybe ten years, she again went out of business.  At that time, Brady’s Department Store a block north took up some of the slack.  Eventually, Ben Franklin moved in and carried fabric and notions.  Sometime after that, John Brady and wife retired and their store went through several businesses before a Pizza place settle there.  Now, Ben Franklin has gone out of business (December 2000).

I don’t remember the street name change, but I do remember the numbers were changed twice.  The first time the numbers had started at one end of town and worked west.  The next time the numbers started at Front Street (whose name had just been changed back) and worked out toward the edges of town.

As a young woman, new in town, I went to a luncheon in Bellevue for some reason.  I was sitting next to an older woman and when I said I was from Issaquah, she told me this story.  Her husband was a contractor and when he was working on the highway that went from Issaquah east, he was told that the people in Issaquah were bad off and could he try to hire a number of them.  He did so.  About a month later there was a strike.  (I guess they figured the Issaquah people were among the agitators.)  When the strike was settled and he was hiring people back he hired only a few people from Issaquah.  About a month later there was another strike.  This time when it was settled he hired only two or three people from Issaquah.  There were no more strikes.  (I don’t know if this took place during the thirties or a few years before or after.)

When we first moved to Issaquah, the Labor Day parade formed up on Rainier Way.  It was very exciting to get up some Saturday and look out the window as the floats and marchers got ready.  I was very sad when the Labor Day Parade was canceled although I understand burnout.

When the Salmon Days Parade was begun it was mostly like our Fourth of July parade – a kids parade with a few bands and floats thrown in.  Over the years, it got bigger and bigger and the route was lengthened and then changed so it no longer went through the booth area where the vendors were selling their wares.

When the arts fair first started the fee was low enough that local hobbyists could enter and show off or sell their handful of wares.  But the price was raised almost every year and pretty soon only the serious vendor with hundreds and then thousands of dollars of wares could afford to enter.

We arrived  in town in August 1964 and one of the first things we did was to go to the City Clerk’s office and register to vote.  It was a presidential election year.  We were one or two days late to register for the primary election, but things were more casual then.  The clerk backdated the entry to the last permitted day, and we got to vote in the primary!

Mr. Flintoft was mayor when we came to town.  (The fire department was quarreling about where to build a new building.  They were still in turmoil twenty years later.)  Sometimes I would sit through city council meetings for entertainment.  Ed Squifflet was friendly and easy to talk to when I had questions about matters before the council.  Then eventually I began working to have the ancient house next to me torn down.  It was involved in an estate dispute among four children and was not being cared for. In this climate, a house deteriorates rapidly.  The blackberries were taking over and the rats lived in the house and out in the blackberries.  I took a petition around to the neighbors asking the council to ask the owners to tear down the house.  (No old-timers would sign it, only new-comers.)  The owners got wind of it and at the council meeting where I was going to present the petition, they asked the council for permission to take care of the problem.  (The house was bulldozed down and hauled away.  The property was sold and some small business offices built.)

I think Mr. Flintoft was mayor for four years after we arrived.  Then Keith Hansen ran for mayor and I helped out in his campaign.  I also helped out four years later when Herb Hamilton ran for mayor.  By then the city had grown much larger, the bureaucracy had more than doubled and I didn’t feel as much connected.

We had access to voter records during the campaign.  I had some neighbors down the street who complained mightily about the state of the city and the nation but never voted!

When we first moved up to our present location (1968) on Bush Street, there was a trail right down the street that led to Lake Tradition.  I started taking the boys up there when Kevin was three years old.  The next year I carried Keith in a backpack, and dragged Kurt along.  Kurt soon dropped out of the hikes, but Kevin and Keith like to hike.  They played in the woods back of the house a lot.

One day Mike McQuade, Jay Doty, and Kevin Horn were playing up near the gun range above the tracks.  (1975+)  As often happens in a threesome, they were picking on the youngest kid.  When they weren’t looking, Kevin climbed up the back side of a fir tree.  He stayed quiet when they started looking for him.  When they left, he climbed down and ran home the back way.  He told me what happened.  Finally, Mike was honest enough to stop by and admit they couldn’t find Kevin.  I told him it was OK.  Kevin would come home.

When the boys were teenagers (ca. 1980) we had a couple real hard winters when the temperature was below freezing for over two weeks.  The ice on Lake Tradition froze hard and was over 4” think in many places.  We walked on the ice and also around the lake.

As they got older my boys hiked to the top of Tiger Mountain and also explored a good bit of West Tiger Mountain.  They learned the location of the “caves” and when it looked like that information might be lost, I wrote a letter to Harvey Manning describing how to find them.  He eventually found them in dry weather (there is a slippery stretch of rock that is bathed in water all winter) and then found another route up to them.  My boys went into them and through them a number of times.  I never did go inside, fearing I might get stuck.

My boys also camped on Tiger Mountain overnight – at first with their father, and later alone.  They really enjoyed the outdoors and joined ESAR when they were old enough.

We used to go to Lake Sammamish several times a summer.  The boys would play in the water or on the play equipment.  As the crowds grew larger it seemed to be more and more of a hassle.  I haven’t been there for a number of years now.  The back yard with its shade is almost as cool.  We went there once in the middle of winter and saw a huge snowy owl sitting on a fence.

When we moved here in the sixties we were still active folk dancers.  We thought we would be zipping into Seattle every weekend to dance.  It didn’t work out that way.  With children it was a major project to go any place and we only occasionally got into Seattle to Folkdance.  We went to the Enumclaw Folk Dance Festival every year for a number of years – until after Keith was born.  He would not nap – but had to see everything until he was impossible cranky.  So we quit and never got back to it.  The organizers suffered burnout there also.

We also helped MC an hour or so of the Folk Life Festival for a few years.  It was outside and we could take the kids along.

A few times we went into Seattle to see the Aquarium or to go to Star Wars movies.  Jimmy took the boys and I spent the time in the public library working on genealogy.

When we shopped for clothes or things that could not be found in Issaquah, we went to Penny’s in Bellevue or to Sears at Overlake or South Center.  I never shopped in Seattle although Jimmy would drive to Seattle to buy radio equipment or surplus stuff.

When we lived on Rainier Way, the Community Baptist Church was just down the street.  I started going there when the children were small and continued until about 1976.  Its’ most interesting feature as a glassed in cry room, where we could attend to our young children and still listen to the sermon.  The older children (4+) could listen to a children’s sermon and then be dismissed to their Sunday School Classes.  The minister was Russ Hendrickson.  I often visited with his wife, since they were neighbors.  One year they were plagued with a family of skunks who lived under their house.  She told the story on her self about the time she got ready to some fancy church function and after she had arrived she happened to look down at her feel.  She was still wearing her gardening shoes!

After a couple of years the church planned and built, with a lot of volunteer labor, a new church up on Mt. Park Boulevard.  I even got my husband to help with the building.  He made a number of friends among the workers.  Not long after the church was completed the minister left.

My children were very lucky in that they could walk to all their schools.  (Except Kurt who went to special education classes.)  I took an interest in the schools and helped out when I could.  Starting when Kevin was about in third grade (say about 1975-76) the idea spread that schools could earn money for extra’s by recycling newspaper.  Clark Elementary was the only school in the area that did it.  I decided that I could help by driving a few kids around who did the footwork, and we went door-to-door collecting paper.  At that time I had an old Cadillac.  We would fill up the large trunk and then fill the inside of the back seat until it was just below the windows.  Going out it was a rule in the car that everyone buckle-up, but going home that was impossible.  Then I would drive carefully home with the kids lying on the paper.  I would carefully back up the front walk to the big doors in Clark.  We would unload and tie the papers into bundles.  The kids had a ball!  Sometimes we arranged for a different crew of kids to help with the unloading.  My car could hold 1/3 of a ton of paper and it all went to the class my child was in.  Unfortunately, my enthusiasm made other classes loose interest.  After a few years, they always said, “The class with Mrs. Horn’s child will win.”

Other factors changed, too.  Issaquah Valley Elementary started collecting paper and then there was much less.  I still went around collecting but I had a route up on Squak Mountain where I collected paper once a month and took it into Fibers International for the money.  When gas prices went up and paper prices went down, it finally did not make it worthwhile to collect paper.  I think Keith was in Junior High by then.  During the month that Clark Elementary had their drive, all the paper went to them.

Keith had to tag along with us from the time he was small.  By the time he got to third grade he was tired of collecting papers.  I would ask for volunteers to help (with permission slips from home) and the first few times I got the class leaders and popular kids.  After a few trips (I took three each time) the glamour wore off and then I would get the less popular kids.  Once I got three boys on the “fringes.”  We still had fun.  I can remember with unexpressed shock, hearing the kids brag about how many fathers they had had and comparing their experiences to see who had had the most!

Jean Harrington, wife of Herb Harrington, was active with CEI since they had a daughter who was in special education.  She was familiar with Port Townsend and their emphasis on their own houses as a tourist attraction.  I guess they made a quilt depicting them that was raffled off each year.  Jean felt we could do the same but we shouldn’t copy them too closely, so we would depict scenes of Issaquah.  Alice Pascal was asked to design the quilt blocks.  In due time various mothers of handicapped children and a few others in town, got a quilt block to do along with a piece of cloth cut to size.  We had to appliqué the larger pieces of the design and embroider the details on them.  Then Jean collected the squares and sewed them together.  She bough the batting and backing cloth and we stretched the quilt in the meeting room of the Lutheran Church down on Front Street.  There were about six of us quilting.  We worked hard and got it done about a month before Salmon Days.  The quilt was displayed in various banks around the area and the businesses and us workers sold raffle tickets for the quilt.  Tickets were also sold at Salmon Days.  That first year they made about $3000.

The next year much the same happened.  Alice Pascal designed a couple more blocks each of the next two years, so there would be more variety.  Jean still bought the materials and cut the squares to size, and called the women to assign the squares, then hounded us until we finished the squares and turned them in.  Usually, there were some unfinished squares that had to be reassigned and finished.  I often helped to finish up one or two squares.  Then Jean sewed the quilt top together (which is not easy) and we got together to finish quilting the quilt.  After the second year Jean tried to delegate some of the tasks.  She got another woman to sew the quilt top together.  After a couple of years we each had to quilt our own square, then the quilt was sewn together.  It still was a lot of work, but it always came out beautiful.  I could stand and study the quilt for a half hour, looking at all the details and the way the colors and types of cloth were put together.  I know I worked on the quilt from 1981 until 1987.  After that, other women were doing the quilt.  I think maybe Jean had left town?  The revenue slowly went down.  They asked a quilt club to do the quilt (for money – I think).  They found appliquéing the squares and embroidering and quilting, was too much work for them, too.  So the next year they made a very nice pieced quilt – but it wasn’t the same.  I don’t think CEI made much money on it.  I believe that is when they quit the project altogether.

I kept hoping I would win the quilt, even though I have no place to display it.  I would buy a whole string of tickets, but it never happened.  At least one of the quilts was destroyed when a house burned down.  I presume the rest of the quilts have survived.

Some other group has made a similar quilt the last couple of years and raffled it off.  (2000)

There was a time when the gas prices really began to go up.  The cars waited in long lines just to fill the car.  About then I started trying to do at least two errands if I took the car out.  I also began to ride my bicycle more around town.  It gave me exercise and saved on gas.  Of course, if I had to take someone someplace I took the car.  I have always enjoyed bicycling for short distances (less than five miles) and it is a good way to do errands.

One day I was baking cookies and hurriedly called my neighbor to see if I could borrow a cup of sugar.  She said, “Just a minute,” and went to check her cupboard.  By the time she came back, I realized I had a wrong number, and this was not my neighbor at all!  (They probably lived in Pine Lake.)

As a young married woman I tried to drive my husband’s stick-shift pickup.  I kept killing it in the most inconvenient places, like just as the stop light turned green, with a long line of cars behind me honking.  I finally gave up the battle and did not learn to drive again until my youngest was about three years old and we had an automatic car.  This was one reason we located in town, within walking distance of a grocery store.

When we moved to town in 1964 we rented a house that the owners had hoped to sell.  We took good care of it and fixed things ourselves.  There was more than one time when Jimmy had to clean out the kitchen pipe to the sewer.  It did not have enough slope so it rapidly filled up with greasy sludge.  He also built more cabinets for storage and redid some of the electric wiring.  I cleaned out the blackberries in the back half of the lot so I could have a garden.  Jimmy helped when it came to digging out the roots.  I did have a nice garden and it grew well in that spot – since we were in the center of town we got a lot of hours of sunshine.

One very nice thing about this lot was the fruit trees.  Along the northern fence line, but in the neighbors yard, were three mature pear trees.  Each year they rained down pears, which were a delight.  I made pear pie and we had all we wanted to eat.  I canned as many as I could manage.  Further west in both my yard and the neighbors were plum bushes that spread by the roots.  We had all the plums we could eat.  They were a dark purple, said to be the source of moonshine during the twenties.  We had a large old graven stein in our yard, which gave us a lot of apples.  I made applesauce and canned it and apple pies and apple crisp.  There were raspberry canes mixed in with the blackberries vines.  We transplanted them to one place and then we had some of those, too.  And of course, we had all the blackberries I had time to pick and fix.

I understand the house was the Johnson house – 519 Rainier Way North.  I was told that years earlier there were two little girls who were orphaned in town.  (Flu epidemic?)  This family adopted one of the sisters and gave her a very nice upbringing.  The feeling of the speaker was that they should have adopted the other girl who was slightly handicapped.  Her left arm was “withered” and she may have limped.  This other girl, Florence Harris, grew up (always single) and worked in the local library for years.  She was a cute little thing with blond hair.  I always enjoyed talking to her, while she checked out my books.  When she got older, she became deaf, and the King County system found a job for her back in the stacks at the main library. (Florence: 2 July 1914 – 20 February 1989)  The adopted girl, Ethel Johnson Lane, grew up and married.  Lived over on Alder or Birch Northeast.  In her later years she would drive down town to shop and forget where she parked the car.  The police would then have to find her car for her  (Ethel: 16 June 1918 – 27 November 1996)   Her obituary says she was a loving woman with children.  I never met her.

1920 Census:  Charles Johnson 46, Sweden, house carpenter, (came in 1887, naturalized in 1901)

Anna Johnson 42   Sweden

Ethel Johnson  daughter  1 7/12 years   Washington

Palm, August  57  Sweden  (immigrated in 1884, naturalized 1899), Sta. Engineer in Saw Mill

Josephine  51  wife   Sweden

Clarence  11  son   Washington

Harris, Florence  gd. Dau.  5  Washington  Wales, Sweden

 

The 1910 census listed Palm, August 47  md.  21  Sweden    Sweden  Sweden

Engineer, Coal Mine

Anna J. W.  42  m.  21 years  5 ch-4 living

Olive J.  D  17

Florence L  D   9

Clarence E  S   1

I suspect Olive J. Palm was the mother of Florence Harris.

 

(I know you didn’t ask for it but here goes.)  Our neighbors were:  The Keoghs lived directly in back of us in a big old house.  We didn’t know them and rarely saw them.  The Cedarholms lived at Dogwood and First and the land they used butted up against the side of our lot in the back.  They were an older couple with four grown children.  Dolly McQuade who later was a “neighbor” on Bush Street was one of her daughters.  Next to them, in the middle, lived Jim Flynn and wife Florence.  They had a grown daughter who was a teacher in California and a son who was almost grown.  Jim was our milkman who worked for Smith Brothers.  He had to retire a bit early because his knees were going bad from having to step down from and up onto the Delivery truck all day.  He retired in the early 1970’s.  Next to him on the corner of Dogwood and Rainier, lived young Tom Lewis.  I think he had four children, all in school.  He worked in a hardware store somewhere other than Issaquah.  Across Dogwood from him, lived Miss Court, where a Real Estate Building is now.  She was quite elderly and walked with a cane.  Very pleasant to talk to, she spoke of growing up on East Issaquah Creek (= East Dogwood).  During a flood once, her father had to carry her and her siblings a few yards across the water, so they could go to school.

The Morgan house was between us and Tom Lewis’ place.  There is a drawing of it in the book, “The Past, at Present” on page 158.  The house north of us was a rental as were most of the rest on the block.  When we first came, I think the John Braun family (pronounced Brawn by the family) lived there with their three boys, who were all older than mine.  Faye was very nice and we often visited.  Later on, they built a house in Mirrormont and moved down there.  She had two or three more children later.  For about a year (?) an older women lived in the house, perhaps the widow Finney (?).  Her left arm was useless, but that didn’t hinder her a bit.  She had just spent several years as a live-in nanny to a family of children and kept them in line.  She could cook and clean and wash and do all the essentials with no problem.  She was taking a break at this time.  Next Jack Finney and wife Ruby and daughter, Gwen, came down from Alaska for over a year. They later returned to Alaska.  I believe Jack was a brother to Don Finney.  Jack worked as a cook.  The last family I remember we did not get very friendly with.

We moved up to 411 Bush Street (later 545) in 1968.  The house was built about 1920 by Frank Strnard, brother of Mrs. John Kramer Sr. (Frances Strnard).  His brother, Albin Strnard and family lived here a few years but by 1926 or before had moved to Renton where he pursued his tailoring business.  His daughter, Betty, grew up and married Elmer Hornberg in 1939.  In the 1980’s (?) her husband and son opened a Haberdashery here on the corner of Alder and Front Street in the two story brick building that later housed a bookstore, and then the Bahá’í (Bahai). Betty Strnard Holmberg, died on the 24th of December 1995.

I think the house was then bought by Lawrence Harris who owned the Harris Coal Mine on SR 900.  I was told he built a very large garage so he could park his coal truck there.  He may have had a dormer added on the west side of the house.  He had a son John who married May Wilkinson, a daughter Frances who married Hugo Berg, and a stepson, Ted Burke.  Lawrence J. Harris was mayor of Issaquah from 1934 to 1937 and also served on the city council.  Lawrence died before his wife on Jun 5, 1949 at the age of 76.

1920 Census:  #40  Harris, Laurence  47  Wales  Ireland Wales, Superintendent of Mines

Georgine  W   35  Norway  Norway  Norway

John   S   16  Washington   Wales   Wales

Francis   D   14   Washington   Wales   Wales

Burke, Ted   14   SS   Washington   Minnesota   Norway

(Laurence had a first wife who was mother to his children.)

Years later William Crosby bought the house about 1962.  He said when he first moved in, he had to haul pickup-truck loads of glass bottles from the basement and under the house.  Apparently, someone had had a drinking problem [Editor’s note: more likely the home had been the headquarters of bootleggers at some point. Issaquah was the home of a number of stills during Prohibition].  Bill Crosby needed this fine, big house for his five children.  The oldest boy was Bill who graduated ca. 1968 or so; the youngest boy was David born ca. 1961-62.  I think there were three girls in between, the oldest one was Margie and another, Debbie.  Bill was a bricklayer and his wife, Sarah, was a nurse.  One of the younger girls tells of lying on the floor by the heat vent upstairs, trying to hear what her oldest sister said to her date as they sat on the couch and watched TV.  Bill got used brick from the job and covered the clapboard with brick and put in a few big beams to entirely change the outside character of the house.  He also lowered the ceilings in part of the house and generally did some remodeling.  Sarah did a nice job of landscaping with Rhododendrons and the seedlings Bill brought back after hunting in Eastern Washington.

The neighbors in this part of town went like this.  At 505 Bush Street lived Dick Berntsen.  His wife’s mother lived up the street on the north side of the next block west (380?) and she walked down to visit her daughter everyday.  One would meet her walking one direction or another most of the day.

Next door, at 525 Southeast Bush Street lived Grandma Berg.  I believe she was Norwegian; I know her husband Charles T. Berg was.  She had a son and a daughter, Camilla. Camilla married Tauno Erickson and had four children; two girls and two boys.  They were said to have spent their early married years down the street at 560 Bush Street.  Mrs. Berg was a plump and very gracious lady.  We often visited over the fence and sometimes in the house.  She had a vegetable garden in the back next to the garage.  Mrs. Berg died sometime in the seventies, then her oldest grandson and his wife and daughter lived there for a number of years.

To the east of us lived Mrs. Kramer who had been widowed a year or so before we moved up here.  She was a business woman who had built or remodeled houses many places in town.  She was retired when I knew her.  She gardened some and kept up her house.  She also showed me drawers full of handiwork that she had done, including embroidered pillowcases with crocheted edges, and crocheted bedspreads and tablecloths.  I enjoyed her and admired her spunk.  She taught me how to make apple strudel, which is more complicated and much richer than pie.  She also let me taste a walnut cake she made each Christmas.  She told me she grew up in Slovenia deep in the mountains, about 10 miles from a market town.  Her children visited her, of course, but also lady friends with whom she volunteered at the Veteran’s Hospital (?) and other friends also.  She eventually died of a heart attack.

Across the street, on the corner of Fifth and Bush was the house where Lulu Doty lived.  She had three sons, Everett, Chuck, and Leonard and a daughter.  Everett had married and had a son Jay.  His wife died in an accident on the Lake Washington bridge when Jay was just an infant.  Lulu raised Jay and Everett lived there a long time also.  Jay was about two years older than my son Kevin.  Chuck Doty and wife Umio and son David lived behind us for a time, in one of the houses that Bill Crosby built.  They moved to a better house on Dorado Drive and Chuck rented the little house to a variety of people, before finally selling it. A contractor bought it and planned to build two townhouses.  He moved the Doty house over, destroyed the basement, scooped out a new hole and built a new basement then stuck the house on top of it.  He may have redone the wiring and plumbing.  He put in new windows and put on new siding.  It was now a duplex with one unit in the basement and the other way up in the air.  The second house never got built because he ran out of money.  Finally, he was able to sell the first house to someone who rents out the basement.

The Brady’s moved into 230 Bush Street the year before we moved to Bush Street.  Jim and Diane Brady have three children:  Dan, Erin and Paula.   Dan is married to Pam and he and Paula live in Seattle.  Erin lives in Port Angeles with her son Matt.  Diane and I have been good friends most of the time we have lived here.

When we first came, Dora Hardin lived in the little house at 240 Bush Street.  She worked and kept a nice yard.  After a few years she retired to Sequim where she later died.  There were many people who have lived in this house.  For several years Leonard Doty and his wife Margie lived here.  Carol and John Doty were born here and stayed at least until John was two.

The next house to the east is owned and now lived in by Al Erickson who works for the Parks Department.  Next to him is Margaret Medalen who was a third grade teacher at Clark Elementary for years.

When the picture of this part of town was taken in 1924, the hill behind us must have recently been logged – or at least the trees were waist high or lower.  When we moved to Bush Street in 1968 the trees on the hill were seemingly full grown, but they have grown much taller in these last thirty years.  From our house east, the street gets little sunshine on the south side.  The sun has become more blocked over the years and the frost remains on the street all day.  It can be a nice winter day on Andrews Street, but when one goes south on Fifth Avenue and enters the shade the temperature goes down at least ten degrees and one feels a damp chill.  Now the neighbors across the street are complaining about the lack of sun.

In the last thirty years our Ponderosa Pines have doubled in height.  The fir tree by our driveway was planted when Kevin brought home a seedling (after a talk by forest rangers at school) when he was six or seven.  I wanted to cut it down when it was Christmas tree size but Kevin wouldn’t hear of it.  It grew very fast, partly because I fertilized my Rhododendrons by it every year.  It has produced cones for years.  I expect it would make poor lumber without much strength because it grew so fast.

Back to the Memory Books

 

Nany Trostle Horrocks

Name: Nancy Horrocks

 

Your history in Issaquah/How long lived here, etc.:

56 years

 

If you moved to Issaquah, why did you choose it?

After the Second World War, my folks decided to move to a rural area.  First of all they checked on school districts.  Not having been able to go beyond the eighth grade themselves, a good education for me was their top priority.

 

If you have lived here all or most of your life, why did you choose to stay?

I had come to love the area, meet my future husband here, loved the farm he would inherit, helped build our home, helped raise four daughters, who, fortunately for me all live within a 25 mile radius and have been able to stay on a small piece of the Horrock’s farm.  It is home! (Plus I’m not great on change!)

 

Issaquah or area school(s) attended:

The grade school where the present Issaquah Middle School now is.  The Issaquah High School that is now home to the Boehm’s swimming pool.

 

Family History in Issaquah:

Moved here right after World War II, 1945.  (Did not realize the nudist colony had just purchased the land above our home and acreage.  This made for many interesting stories in later years!)

 

Education—Coming of Age

What are your memories of Issaquah High School?  Which teachers were influential?

I loved high school. I was an active student. Mr. Richard Treat and Miss Frances Crelly were both great positive influences on my life. She, for helping to develop my writing ability and he, for helping to implant a strong feeling for our method of government and the encouragement he gave to read and learn about history in general.

 

What memories do you have of Minnie Schomber, or another favorite teacher?

I didn’t actually know Mrs. Schomber, but she was a great favorite of my husband, David. On tape she told the story of David’s first day at school. He was very shy and cried and cried. Now, there’s nothing so unusual about that. But, what amazed me was her memory concerning David about 60 years later!

 

Were you affected by earthquake damage to the schools in 1949 or 1965?

Not really, although I recall standing outside the school looking at the remains of a large brick chimney laying in ruin on the ground in 1949. Our home is build on “hard pan” so we were very fortunate when the 1965 quake hit. It was kind of funny watching the cows “run in place.”

 

What kind of extracurricular activities were you involved in?  Did you play football or chess, or did you act in the school plays?  What were memorable games or plays?

Music: Nonette, soloist. I High Times (school paper) Editor. School plays.

In my junior year I had a “character” part in the school play. (I loved character parts. Marjorie Main was my favorite actress!) I played a real “darky” nurse in a production titled “Take Your Medicine.” I remember the two town doctors sat right down front and roared with laughter when I was on stage. It made my day!

 

Where did you and your friends spend your free time as teenagers?  What kind of mischief did you get into?  How did your parents or teachers punish you when you got into trouble?

I was very involved with my church youth group. (It was where Dave and I really became acquainted.) We hiked, picnicked, went to the movies, etc. There were slumber parties for the girls. I guess I was one of the “good kids” most of the time. I do remember a day when two or three girls, including myself dumped perfume in several of the jock’s lockers. They actually turned us in to the principal. It was the only time I was ever “sent” to the office. If memory serves me correctly we had to clean the boys’ lockers. Punishment from my parents usually meant “banishment” to my room. (Big deal – I loved to read!) Also, lost “radio” privileges.  Might, horror of horror– have to do extra ironing.

 

Local businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?

I remember one day a bunch of us were sitting in a booth reading the newspaper where Marilyn Monroe was quoted as to the fact she wore no bra. We were scandalized! There was also a café called the Busy Bee (where the new library is). They had great scoops of ice cream for 5¢.

Shamrock Cafe (Front St.) – owned by the Shains – the family of a classmate. (before that it was Jay’s.) This was a real teenage hang out. It was where one could order cherry cokes, chocolate cokes and “graveyards” fountain fresh. Rena Shain made the best chocolate cake in captivity! Right across the street was Drylie’s Soda Fountain. To many of the kids he was a real grouch, but those of us who really understood him knew his “bark was worse than his bite.” His floats were to die for. There was a little “mom & pop” store on Front St., called Mosker’s (owner’s name). He was the bubble gum king! At the end of the war you actually had to go on a list to qualify for Double Bubble. He always kept some on hand for me under the counter.

 

What barbershop or beauty shop did you frequent?  What do you remember about these places?  What were the popular hairdos when you frequented the beauty shop?  Did you do a lot of socializing at the barber and beauty shops?

First of all, no girl would be caught dead in a barber shop and visa versa. Many of us wanted special hair dos for the big dances, and of course graduation. I wore page boys, and had really long hair. In those days a perm could take four hours. I can’t remember the name of my favorite beautician. I do remember she was Mae Darst’s mom. Her shop was in the garage. Her husband remodeled it into a “beauty parlor.”

 

What is memorable about Lewis Hardware?  What items did you purchase there?

I still love the oiled wood floors.

 

Where did you go to buy your groceries?  Did you go to Tony and Johnny’s, or RR Grocery on East Sunset? Do you remember your favorite clerk?  Were there any items that these grocers specialized in?

Let’s see there was the Grange. (We had freezer space there because home freezers were not yet available.) Steven’s Mkt. on Front St. was the typical old fashioned store, pot bellied stove and all. The Red and White Mkt. on Sunset was very popular. (They delivered.) It was not unusual to charge groceries. I remember Mosier’s Mkt. .because of the wheel of cheese on the counter. Fischer’s Meats always offered kids a free wiener and bones for the dogs. Tony and Johnnie’s old store was really cool. Tony had the most fantastic sense of humor.

 

 

What restaurants or soda shops did you enjoy going to?  Did you go to Rena’s Café, or XXX Root beer?  What was your favorite food?  Were there memorable waiters or waitresses?

I’ve also mentioned the Shamrock (Rena & Bill Shain’s). We haunted the XXX. If you drive to the Maple Valley Highway via the Cedar Grove Rd. you can still see the remnants of the actual XXX bldg. It’s in really bad shape and totally unrecognizable from the one in our memories. Banana splits with all chocolate ice cream were great! I’ll never forget the night the town constable (who was Walt Seil’s dad) stopped Dave and me just after we’d left the XXX and accused us of throwing a beer bottle out the window! Of course we didn’t!

 

Did you go to Boehm’s Candies?  What candies were your favorites?

Absolutely. In the “early” days the “broken chocolates” were such a deal! $ .98 a lb!

 

What saloons or local bars did you and your friends frequent?

None! In my crowd saloons and bars were taboo. One year during the Labor Day celebration my parents walked out of the Rolling Log Tavern just ahead of me. I ignored them and crossed to the other side of the street!

 

What do you remember about Grange Supply?

All the farmers were members. I remember the baby chicks and ducks. We still have old Grange certificates from the 1920s. (David’s dad’s certificates.)

 

What do you recall about Lawill’s drug store?

Off the record – where I stole a comic book! Seriously, they were neat folks. Friendly, courteous.

 

Local Politics

What important local political issues of Issaquah are memorable?  Do any particular politicians stand out?  Why are they memorable?  What did they accomplish while in office?

Not for print! You can just imagine the trend of jokes when the local mortician became the mayor. Talk about graveyard humor.

 

Do you recall Ordinance No. 752 that changed most of the street names in town?  What were your feelings about this change at the time?

I think I’ve already mentioned I’m not keen on change.

 

The Great Depression

What are your memories of the Great Depression?  Did you have a job at this time?  What ways did you try to save money?  What did you eat?

I was raised on my family’s depression stories. Because my folks worked on farms during those years they were never hungry. There just was very little money. Often they worked for board and room.

 

Issaquah Round-Up—Salmon Days—Labor Day Celebrations

What do you remember about Labor Day Celebrations or Salmon Days?

Fun! Fun! Fun!

I remember one year the men were told to grow beards. If you didn’t have one you could be thrown in a “mock” jail on Front St. My dad, Charles Trostle, was one of the jailers.

 

Was there any year that these celebrations were especially memorable to you?

The years as part of the young people’s group from my church (Roadside Chapel) when we entered floats. One year, a local flower grower donated hundreds and hundreds of dahlias. Another year we spent hundreds of hours making flowers out of Kleenex. We won both years!

 

What special activities were there at Labor Day Celebrations, or at Salmon Days?  How has Salmon Days changed over time?

Salmon Days is too large, too crowded, too much!

 

Special Occasions

What were some of the other memorable special events and occasions in Issaquah?

Memorial Day. In the two days preceding Memorial Day we would spend hours cutting back the weeds, arranging flowers, etc. (There was no perpetual care during those days.) It was an important social event. A great time to chat with relatives, friends and neighbors. Picnic lunches were even in order. Where did all this happen? The cemetery.

 

Outdoor Recreation

Did you spend a lot of your free time outside?  What do you remember about fishing, hunting, or hiking in the area?  What was your favorite hiking trail?

My favorite hiking trails? The Horrock’s farm. I loved swimming and hiking. I often biked to Alexander’s Beach to swim. (About a five mile bike ride.) I loved the out of doors. Swimming was my favorite sport. (Self-taught, although eventually I took lessons.)

 

What type of fish did you catch?   How many trout did you catch in the Issaquah Creek and what was the biggest?  Did you fish in the kids fishing derby held in Issaquah?  Were your methods for fishing and hunting any different than they are today?

Trout – I was a stream fisherperson. I got too bored with lake fishing. Since I lived right across the street from the Issaquah Creek, I fished a lot – particularly with my dad (Charles Trostle). He taught me fly fishing. I still have his collection of hand tied flies.

 

What are your memories of Vasa Park?  What did you do while there?

Danced for more hours than I can possibly approximate. The only public beach where I ever went skinny dipping – with girl friends on a dare during a slumber party.

 

Did you go swimming in the local lakes in the summer?  Or ice-skating at the Horrock’s Farm in the winter?

Yes, to both. Pine Lake Resort, Alexander’s Beach on Sammamish, and Lake Wilderness. Having become a member of the Horrock’s family in 1954, I guess I should add the Horrock’s lake and dam for swimming. This is where our daughters learned to swim and skate.

 

Logging and Sawmills

How did the logging industry affect Issaquah?  How did it change?  Did you work in logging?  For what logging camp or sawmill?  What do you remember of your logging days?  What type of machines did you use for logging?  How did you transport logs? How large were these logs?

Dave’s dad (David Horrocks, Sr.) worked many years in the sawmills. He was an engineer in the High Point Mill. His mom, Myrtle Bush Horrocks, worked in mill kitchens as a very young woman. We still have some of her “cook house” recipes.

 

Salmon hatchery

How has the salmon hatchery affected Issaquah?

In the early days it put Issaquah on the map.

 

Farming and Dairy

Were you involved with farming in Issaquah?  What farm did you work on?  What was grown or raised there?

In 1888 Dave’s grandfather, James Horrocks, purchased 200 acres on what would become the Cedar Grove Road. He built a cabin, started an orchard, brought livestock on the place, planted crops, etc. Dave’s father, Dave, Sr., saw to the barn building and started a dairy. I remember driving a tractor during haying, “mucking out” the stalls, “cooling” the milk and driving the cows. (The only times I heard Dave’s dad cuss, was when we was driving cows into the barn!

 

Do you have any memories of Pickering Farm?

The hay fields along both sides of Highway 10 I found very tranquilizing and romantic. (Except when fertilizer had just been spread!)

 

Railroad—Transportation

Did you travel frequently into Seattle?  How did you get there?  What did you do while in Seattle?

I loved to take the bus to Seattle for a day of shopping. This was usually with girl friends. The Pike Place market was a real draw. There were at least eight major movie theatres. As a dating teenager we loved to go to the all night theatres.

 

How did the construction of I-90 change life in Issaquah?

Lots more people!

 

What was your first car?  Did you buy it from Hepler Ford Motors, Stonebridge Chevrolet, or the Kaiser-Frazier dealership?

Dave, my husband, bought his first new car from Hepler Ford. He was still in his late teens. His dad actually bought the car and [he] paid his dad $50.00 a month until it was paid. (He actually saved the receipt book. But, then, what didn’t he save!

My first car was an old – really old – Ford. It was painted a bright kelly green. When I took my mom (Christine Trostle) shopping she made me let her out and pick her up at the edge of town!

 

Fraternal Organizations—Local Halls

What are your memories of the fraternal organizations?  Did you belong to the Elks Lodge, or Lions Club, etc?

Eagle’s Lodge. My dad, Charles Trostle, was the first chapter 4054 president. Dave joined the lodge in order to be able to see more of me as my parents were pretty strict. No single dating before the age of 16!

I myself was a Rainbow Girl.

 

What types of events did you attend at the Volunteer Fire Department (VFD) Hall?  Did you use the shooting range located in the basement?

As I said about the Vasa Park Hall can also be said concerning the fire hall. I danced many, many hours away in that hall. One of the distinguishing elements was the fact that entire families would take part. I often watched my folks in waltz and Charleston contests. They always won! It was my dad who taught me to dance.

 

Did you attend dinners, dances, banquets, or other events in the upstairs Grange Meeting Hall?

Yes, but no outstanding memories.

 

Mining

Do you have any memories of Issaquah’s mining days?  Were you involved in mining?

Dave’s grandfather, James Horrocks, was a miner. He would leave the farm on the Cedar Grove Road – walk 6 miles, carrying his mining tools, to the mine, work a 10-hour day, and return to the farm to complete farm chores.

 

What were the working conditions like in the mine? Which mine did you work for, and what was your job?

James Horrocks worked the Newcastle Mines and the Issaquah mines. He worked in the tunnels. Lung disease eventually caused his death.

 

Entertainment

What movies did you go to see at the Issaquah Theatre (the Old Movie House) to see?  How much did movies cost?  Did you ever go to the back upper corner of the theatre to kiss?

Do you have room to list a hundred or more? My first social security job was ushering and working behind the “goodies” counter. My wage was $ .75 per hour including a reasonable amount of popcorn, candy and pop. As a kid I spent a lot of Saturdays at the theatre. First came the previews, next several cartoons, then finally the serial movie. (Oh yes, almost forgot the news …“Here are the eyes and ears of the world.”)

Anyhow, here are a few of my favorites: Bambi, Snow White, Cinderella, all Tex Ritter movies, most every musical ever made, “Singing in the Rain,” Camelot, etc. Of course, Gone with the Wind, Random Harvest, any Marjorie Main comedy. I could go on and on, but I won’t.

That was known as the kissing corner. Yes, I spent a fair share of time back there! On one occasion it was filled so I and my boyfriend had moved up front. Did this slow us down? Absolutely not! Until someone tapped me on the shoulder. When I turned around it was to discover my parents sitting directly behind me!

 

Front Street

The I.O.O.F. Hall was often rented out for parties, weddings, etc. One year our church, The Roadside Chapel (south of Issaquah), rented it for a Halloween party. Our young people’s group had pressed cider for a money raising project and we were selling it by the gallon. What we didn’t realize was it didn’t take the cider all that long to start to ferment. No one complained about the “hard” cider!

I attended “cake walks” there and basket socials.

 

Churches

What church did you attend?  What memories do you have of this church?  Were there any pastors, reverends, or church leaders that stand out in your memory?

From the age of ten I regularly attended the Roadside Chapel, four miles south of Issaquah. It was a country church and I was very involved. I was baptized and married from this church. Our four daughters were raised in this church. We built a larger church just up the road. All labor was volunteered. Dave helped with all the electrical. The young minister Stan Kuhn was very instrumental in our spiritual life. Years later, another minister was a very important part of our life. He was Robert Mathers. We are still in touch.

I will, all my life, be grateful for the basic fundamental security and faith I learned in this little country church.

 

Additional Memories

“The student and lover of nature has only to stay at home and see the procession pass.”  John Burroughs

With these words in my heart and a cup of coffee in hand, I am often content on an early morning to dream the hours away on the back porch of my home, contemplating the passing of the seasons of my life since my marriage.

I can gaze across the man made body of water to where the Horrocks’ house and barn once stood. Where once a water wheel turned so that the family might realize its capability to produce electricity. Although long gone, I can capture in my mind’s eye the small, rudimentary cabin which once sheltered the family. A few of the fruit trees planted those many years ago still blossom and then carpet the grass with their spring color.

As I traverse the Cedar Grove Road, then the Hobart Road into Issaquah it is difficult to realize the accounts of the Cedar Grove Road as being so densely timbered that in mid day it was a darkened pathway.

As I gaze towards where the barn once stood I can almost hear the laughter of the children as they swing to and fro from the rope swing anchored high in the barn rafters.

Warm, sunny days can make one remember the scent of lush, wild blackberries growing at the base of the rock supporting wall just outside the milk house. The hum of the bees amongst the berries was almost musical. Inside the milk house was the cement tank which held the milk cans, cooled by the constant stream of almost icy water fed by the underground natural spring. What an oasis on a hot summer day!

While Dave’s father served in the First World War the farm was leased. It was still leased out when the country began to feel the birth pangs of prohibition. Years later when a remodeling project took place in the farmhouse the avocation of the renter was discovered. Inside many walls, shelves had been built. The shelves held bottle after bottle of “moonshine.” During my husband’s childhood, he and a cousin discovered the still. It was still in its entirety. Boiler, coils and all the apparatus just as it had been in its most productive hours. Dave showed me the site many years later. The underground room was still intact, although emptied.

The farm eventually due to spiraling taxes was sold. We kept five acres. It will never be as it was, but still remnants remain. The lakes, although rimmed with homes, still carry across the waters the laughter of children at play. During hard winter freezes one can hear the whistle of the blades of skates across the frozen surfaces. Old, gnarled, fruit trees still dot the landscape, and a rose that crossed the plains in a covered wagon winds its way around a fence in my backyard. I rescued it from an old, blackened hollow stump just ahead of the developer’s bulldozed blade. In our attics are stored the hand-made tools Dave’s grandfather and father fashioned to help carve out their place in history. All of these treasures help me remember how privileged I have been to share with them the heritage they have left. Having known them and known about them, I also believe has helped me in being able to share with them a part of their great mental courage. I have always sensed their spiritual love for this land.

So as I watch the bare branches of my friend the cottonwood tree, I feel a kinship between us as we both look forward to spring. To the beginning of watching yet a new procession.

P.S. One more notation for the downtown businesses. On Front St., near the Miles market was the Lewis Barbershop. The driver’s ed teacher would invariably use the loading zone in front of the barbershop to teach us how to parallel park. As we were struggling with this task, Mr. Lewis and his customers would wander out onto the sidewalk and watch us, laughing and teasing at our ineptness at parking!

Back to the Memory Books

Archie Howatson

Name: Archie Howatson

Local Businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?

I remember Tom Lewis is the school bus driver on the Hobart route.

 

World War II

How did World War II affect the town of Issaquah?  Did you know men or women who went to fight in the war?  Did you leave Issaquah to join the war efforts?

There are a number of family names in the veterans section of Hillside Cemetery.  I have a grave reserved there.  My late wife is buried there.  Her maiden name was Helen Prien.  She was a graduate of Issaquah High.

 

Issaquah Round-Up—Salmon Days—Labor Day Celebrations

What are your memories of the Rodeo?

I remember the horse races and chariot races.  There were also riders trying to stay on bucking broncos and bulls.  In 1929 there was a tremendous downpour.  The clown stayed on the race track and entertained the crowd till the rodeo was finally called off.  I think this was the last rodeo in Issaquah.

 

Logging and Sawmills

How did the logging industry affect Issaquah?  How did it change?  Did you work in logging?  For what logging camp or sawmill?  What do you remember of your logging days?  What type of machines did you use for logging?  How did you transport logs? How large were these logs?

I was a timber cutter in the logging industry for twenty years.  Worked at North Bend Timber Co. where I worked as a faller where I used that 12 foot falling saw that is in the Issaquah museum.  Also worked Mountain Free Farm Co. at Cedar Falls and St. Regis Paper Co. at Mineral.

 

Do you remember the Monohon Mill, the Red Hall sawmill by the fish hatchery, the High Point Mill, the Preston Mill, or the Issaquah Lumber Company Mill on Front Street South?

Was born on a 5-acre place near Monohon.  Went to school there in the first grade in 1924 and 25.  In June1925 the mill and the town burned.  We then moved to a place 6 miles south of Issaquah on the Hobart road.

 

Do you remember when there was a fire at the mill?  Did you help fight it?  Did you see the fire?

Before 1929 it was Neukirchen’s Mill.

 

Farming and Dairy

Do you have any memories of Pickering Farm?

The schools in the picture is very familiar.  On the first floor on the right was the first grade, taught by Miss MacMaster.  On the left lower floor was the second grade taught by Miss Donavan.  On the second floor left was the fourth grade taught by Miss Cook.  On the right on the second floor was the seventh grade.  (Taught by Mr. Stevenson.)  The sixth and eighth grade were in the back of the building on the second floor.  Miss Willis taught the sixth grade.  The third and fifth grades were in the annex buildings to the right.  The third grade taught by Miss Bresnahan and the fifth grade which was taught by Miss McKay.  I don’t remember the eighth grade teacher.  We moved to Hobart when I was in the sixth grade.  The top floor was the high school.

 

Railroad—Transportation

How did the construction of I-90 change life in Issaquah?

I think U.S. 10 which is now Gilman Boulevard changed Issaquah more than I-90 by encouraging expansion toward the north.

 

AUTHOR of THIS MEMORY BOOK (signature and date)

Archie Howatson 3/21/01

Ruth Kees

Name:

Ruth Kees

 

Birth Date or Year (optional):  1923

Your history in Issaquah/How long lived here, et c.:

When we started on our dream home, our slogan was, “We are going to be in by Christmas.”  So on December 24, 1960, we flung our sleeping bags onto the floor of our unfinished house and moved in thereafter.

 

 If you moved to Issaquah, why did you choose it?

Our property has a little stream running from the NE corner to the SW, lots of trees, Issaquah Creek, scenery, small town, mountains, country roads, lake, small airport, new friends.

 

Education—Coming of Age

 

Were you affected by earthquake damage to the schools in 1949 or 1965?

We were irreversibly and permanently affected when debris from schools was used as fill in the lily pond and wetlands located at the north end intersection of Hobart road, 238th way and S.E. 96th street in order to create a. to this date, unusable lot. The intent was to create a filling station here.

 

What kind of extracurricular activities were you involved in?  Did you play football or chess, or did you act in the school plays?  What were memorable games or plays?

I designed and constructed settings for class plays-deep purple dance presentation modern interpretive dance and Christmas carol plays.

 

Where did you and your friends spend your free time as teenagers?  What kind of mischief did you get into?  How did your parents or teachers punish you when you got into trouble?

Football (spectacular) games, roller skating, ice skating, swimming, dancing, (big name bands, picnics, baseball, bicycling, chores,  (shocking wheat, husking corn, picking grapes, strawberries) getting cows home, roaming fields, fishing for bullheads, jumping from rafters in the hay barn.

 

Local businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?

I helped Ann Haffington in an antique/second store in the old “Elks” South of Fasanos and north of Lewis barber shop. I was a “picked” and attended Grufield’s and other auctions and junk shops and helped clerk the store.  Ann named the store “Finkeis damn”.  Ann moved to Fairwood where her husband built an airplane.  On one of their trips, they crashed near Chicago where he was killed and she was so severely crippled, she never recovered.

 

What is memorable about Lewis Hardware?  What items did you purchase there?

Lewis Hardware was there when we started building our dream house in 1959.  The best thing is that it is essentially still there in 2001.  Please dong let anybody modernize it and turn it to some other use.  He used this product and always found then helpful in obtaining special items while building our home and all years after.  Their wooden floors and beaten counters and rear entrance and are delightful.

 

Where did you go to buy your groceries?  Did you go to Tony and Johnny’s, or RR Grocery on East Sunset? Do you remember your favorite clerk?  Were there any items that these grocers specialized in?

Rena’s pies and sandwiches saved our lives when we came to Issaquah to work on our property after both of us had put in a day’s work at Boeing:

Before building, we had to get access to our 20 acre property by constructing S.E. 96th and part of 240th Ave. S.E.

Fisher’s meat market was our meat source.  My specialty then was prime rib roast.

George Campbell, on Tiger Mtn. Road, constructed our roads.

 

Did you purchase things at the Grange Mercantile Building?  What type of things did you get there?  Did your family rent a frozen food storage locker?

He bought most of our groceries there and we had a frozen food locker where we stored lamb and beef.  Clark Campbell, who owned the property we bought, had a herd of sheep and we bought a butchered lamb from him.

 

What restaurants or soda shops did you enjoy going to?  Did you go to Rena’s Café, or XXX Root beer?  What was your favorite food?  Were there memorable waiters or waitresses?

Rena’s pies! Rena and her husband!

 

Did you go to Boehm’s Candies?  What candies were your favorites?

Boehm’s mixed chocolates- we could get a sack full for 99 cents ah! Good old days.

 

What do you remember about Grange Supply?

We’ve always found our supplies there-not only for feeding our various pets and animals but others gardening supplies and building materials-besides dogs and cats, we’ve had bantam. Pigeons, Chickens, crippled squirrels and wounded deer.

 

Local Politics

What important local political issues of Issaquah are memorable?  Do any particular politicians stand out?  Why are they memorable?  What did they accomplish while in office?

Build out – loss of springs and digging wells for Issaquah Water supply.  Lass of Skyport and farmlands to development. All mayors from Herb Harrington to our present day mayor are notable for promotion of increased tax base with very little regard to loss of quality of living, increased infrastructure cost and loss of watersheds and recharge areas.

 

The Great Depression

What are your memories of the Great Depression?  Did you have a job at this time?  What ways did you try to save money?  What did you eat?

I grew up in Beatrice, Nebraska during the great depression which was also the great drought fears.  We lived on a small farm where we milked a cow, had a draft horse and hand cultivators, pigs raised our corn, alfalfa, Grapes, apples, peaches, and pears, and beans peas and potatoes.  He all had different chores divided amongst two older brothers and one older sister.

We had no electricity or running water and the house was heated by a pot burner in the living room and a Monarch range in the kitchen.  One of my jobs was to clean the coal and oil lamps chimneys.  In spite of storm windows, winters often coated the insides of the glass with an inch of ice.

Every Sat, Mom would make a trip to town to trade butter and eggs for groceries which consisted mostly of staples – flour, and sugar. She spent most of her summer canning produce for the coming winter. Each of us received a dime to spend and often we attended a picture show or maybe an ice-cream cone – double-dip 5 cents. It was something when sound movies started.

Mom made most of our girl’s clothes but the boys wore overalls. I was enrolled in 4-H when I was nine and made my won dresses. Cloth was 3 yards for a dollar.

My dad made was a rural mail carrier and remained one until his death in 1959.  He had all gravel or mud roads but when th weather was good, he would cover his route in the morning and take care of the farm afternoons.  We didn’t know we were poor!

I remember the drought years well. The red dust of Oklahoma blew up into Nebr. and lay against snow fences like dirty snowdrifts. As soon as the wheat fields were combined, the grasshopper infestation which came with the hot summers, moved into the corn and milo fields and on quiet days you could hear the munching. The fields grew smaller daily.

There is much more to tell of the indigents passing through trying to get to California or anywhere and the gypsy migration in spring and fall.

 

World War II

How did World War II affect the town of Issaquah?  Did you know men or women who went to fight in the war?  Did you leave Issaquah to join the war efforts?

I did not move to Issaquah until 1960. However, Beatrice, Neb., was and still is, a town of some 11,000 in an agricultural area. When WWII started in December 1941, I was starting my first year at the University of Nebraska.  My two brothers were drafted immediately and spent the rest of the war in the South Pacific. Almost every fellow of about my age disappeared into the military. Dempster Mill Mfg. Co., which made farm equipment, was converted into the manufacturing of 90 mm shells. After finishing my first year of college, I was accepted into the Ordnance Dept. of the Army and became and Ordnance Inspector where I remained until the end of the war.  My brothers and future husband all returned uninjured but many did not. One young man who visited Beatrice on leave brought a diphtheria infection with him. Some dies because we had no penicillin.

 

Issaquah Round-Up– Salmon Days– Labor Day Celebrations

What do you remember about Labor Day Celebrations or Salmon Days?

It always rained on Labor Day. It  was wise to move it to October.

 

Was there any year that these celebrations were especially memorable to you?

When I was honored for environmental concerns and Brian Boyle shared in the honors.  While he managed the Department of National Resources, Tiger Mountain State Forest became a reality!

 

Outdoor Recreation

Did you spend a lot of your free time outside?  What do you remember about fishing, hunting, or hiking in the area?  What was your favorite hiking trail? 

Tiger and Squak Mountain – Lake Tradition (Issaquah Watershed) posted with “No Trespassing” signs to prevent pollution of “springs” area.

 

What are your memories of Vasa Park?  What did you do while there? 

Rock shores – I’m fascinated by the diversity of rocks found there – brought down by the glaciers and left here when the glaciers receded.

 

Did you go swimming in the local lakes in the summer?  Or ice-skating at the Horrock’s Farm in the winter?

Have gone swimming in both Lk. Sammamish and Lk. Washington

 

Salmon hatchery

How has the salmon hatchery affected Issaquah?

Yin and yang, both good and bad.  The native wild salmon in Issaquah Creek was a fresh water fish which migrated from Issaquah Creek to Lake Sammamish. When Lake Sammamish was connected to Lake Washington via the Sammamish Slough, bigger salt water salmon were introduced and the small native salmon were discouraged by preventing them from going past the hatchery. Also, it was feared that the native salmon would carry a virus which could infect the imports.

This has been disproved and now the hatchery is being used for education and encouragement of restoration of more natural environment.

 

Farming and Dairy

Do you have any memories of Pickering Farm?

There was an artesian well where the Meadows is now located. The cupola of the barn was home to barn owls and pea fowls strutted around the barnyard.  Also, the Skyport for gliders and small aircraft was, I believe, a remnant of WWII.

 

Railroad– Transportation

Did you travel frequently into Seattle?  How did you get there?  What did you do while in Seattle?

It used to be easy to drive into Seattle, I shopped there at the Bon, Frederick’s, Penney’s, Sears, Goodwill and Pike Place Market – Goodwill and numerous junk shops. Later, as traffic increased and parking became difficult, taking a bus was easy.  Medical centers were located in Seattle.

 

How did the construction of I-90 change life in Issaquah?

It took the city of Issaquah off surface water (5 springs on NW Tiger Mountain) and fave it groundwater (2 wells near Boehm’s candy). Issaquah’s watershed area which was to have “No Trespassing” signs, has become a part of Tiger Mountain State Forest conservancy area where hiking is permitted.

 

What was your first car?  Did you buy it from Hepler Ford Motors, Stonebridge Chevrolet, or the Kaiser-Frazier dealership?

My very first car was a WWII surplus jeep – a gift of my father. We promptly traded it in for a metallic copper colored jeep station wagon, which my husband and I used for moving to Renton, WA in fall 1952.  Dan was hired fort Boeing and I also joined Boeing in Dec. ’52.

Back to the Memory Books