We are in the process of updating our web site, and as I go through the many, many files that make up the site, I’ve been reading some of the pages for the first time in years. It struck me that many of the biographies of police and marshals bear updating, now that we have gathered more information in our community family tree. Since it makes the most sense to start at the very beginning, as Julie Andrews would sing, I decided to investigate Henry L. Beebe first.
Henry Beebe was reportedly the first town marshal in Gilman (today’s Issaquah), although he served for only three days. Beebe appears in the 1892 Washington State Territorial census. At that time, he was living in Gilman with his young wife Ada Sloper Beebe, and their one-year-old son Henry. The census shows that he was born in the United States in about 1867, and that he was working as a laborer. The Washington State Digital Archives contain copies of the certificate he signed upon his marriage to Ada, and another marriage license for his marriage to Sula Turner several years later. And this is the extent of the information I have been able to locate about Mr. Henry Beebe. Did his first wife die? Did he move away? What happened to his son?
And how did he come to be the town marshal for only three days? The only source I can find for this information is a scribbled note among Harriet Fish’s papers — but no information as to her source for this tidbit.
On April 25, 1892, the King County Council approved the incorporation of the town of Gilman, following a vote by the citizens of the would-be town. The application for incorporation included a proposed slate of mayor and council members. The minutes of the first Gilman Town Council meeting on April 27, 1892 note that the name of John McQuade was put forth for the office of Town Marshal, and was unanimously approved.
Did some other associated incorporation paperwork include Beebe’s name as the proposed marshal? Why didn’t his name come up during the nominations at the first council meeting?
As is so often the case, seeking the answer to a historical question often leads us… to more questions.
If you have any additional ideas about Mr. Beebe or Gilman’s first town marshal, I would love to hear them!