Issaquah History Museums

Joseph Mason

Served 1900 & 1902

Served 1900 & 1902

Joe Mason was born in March 1875 in Michigan. His parents were both immigrants from Ireland. By 1878, his parents had relocated the family to Washington, where Mason lived out the rest of his life.

On June 4, 1899, Mason married Emma Mullarkey. Emma was born in Oregon in February 1876, and was also the child of Irish immigrants. Emma’s brother, salloon-owner Burnett Mullarky, also served as Issaquah Marshal. Mason worked as a coal miner for a time and between 1900 and 1902 he put on the Marshals’ badge. According to Town Ordinance Number 56, enacted in February 1900, his pay was $60.00 per month.

The old wooden town jail, long since knocked down, was renovated in January 1900. The Issaquah Independent had this to say. “The City Bastille has been renovated the past week both inside and out. Instead of a leaky flat roof, a new pitched roof adorns the building and it assumes metropolitan airs.”

At the time of Mason’s tenure as marshal, the population in the Gilman voting precinct was 1,060. In August 1900, the first telephone company was organized and by January 1901 there were two subscribers. Area mines, with a monthly payroll of around $30,000, employed 500 men.

In 1902, Mason joined the Seattle Police Department and served with distinction. In 1919,  a piece in the Issaquah Press noted that he had been promoted to the rank of Captain. He died in Seattle on April 14, 1929, at the age of 54.

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