Hailstone Feed Store

Hearing History: James “Pinky” Hailstone

Hailstone Feed Store – the closest thing IHM has to a picture of James “Pinky” Hailstone
(left to right: Frank Hailstone, Nell Hailstone Falkenstein, Emma Greenier Hailstone [wife of James Hailstone])

Did you ever hear anything about that hanging over by the Marchettis, a maple tree?

James “Pinky” Hailstone:  Oh, yes.   My older brother witnessed that.

Richie Woodward:  Uh-huh.
JH:  I asked him, oh, a few different times, you know, about the deal.  And he was the only one that I could find in this community who could tell me different parts of that.  
You see, they – what I wanted to know was what they did with the bodies of the two men that were blown up in this explosion.  And he told me that they were buried in that little corner, where they had that … uh … public building there, across the creek from the fish hatchery, that apartment house.

RW:  Oh, yeah.

JH:  They were buried in that corner.

BE:  What explosion was that? 

JH:  Well, you see, why, they hanged the man.  He went down and blew up part of a house.  Of course, the whole history of the thing was, at the time then, why, we had instead of – we did have hotels in this town.  I don’t mean that, but we had many of the men that worked in the mine were single men.  And a lot of the women had what they called “rooming houses.”  They would have board and room for so much a month.

And this fellow came to one of those boardinghouses and he and this woman that was operating it had known one another in Europe.  I think in Austria or one of the German you know, close to Germany.  And he wanted to board there with her, but she wouldn’t let him.

So, her and her daughter lived in a little sort of a lean-to built onto the house.  They slept in that.  And, of course, he got that information.  And when she had refused him two or three times to let him come in there and stay, why, he brought powder from the mine, and one night he blew up this part of the house.  And during the time from when he had talked to her until he was ready to blow it up, she had moved her bedroom upstairs and moved a couple of her boarders in there.  And, of course, they were the ones that were killed; and that’s what the hanging was about. 

The town folk just organized and got the guy and took him up there and hung him.  They had a trial in the little union hall up there.

RW:  Where did they hang him at?

JH:  Well, they just took him down over the hill … now, what would that … let’s see …

BE:  That was Marchetti’s there, wasn’t it?

JH:  Yeah, that was Tom Marchetti’s place, right just across the alley from the Tom Marchetti –

BE:  Where they built the schoolhouse and [inaudible].

RW:  Uh-huh.

JH:  You know, from the school, it’s on that side, on the west side.  That was the original school grounds, of course.  But they just held their court, and they found him guilty, and they went down there and strung him up and left him.”

Oral History Transcript / Full Record

Note: the transcript and record are incorrect in their use of the name “John” Hailstone. The correct and full name is James Hooker Hailstone, Sr. Records will be updated to reflect this.

James “Pinky” Hailstone was born in British Columbia in 1898 to Francis Hailstone and Ester Hooker Hailstone. He was interviewed in 1975 by Richie Woodward, a student at Issaquah High School. His interview has a lot of interesting stories including he and some friends burning a “fiery cross” and the KKK being blamed for it, the story of the only hanging in Issaquah, and a story about Ben Legg.

Last week we wrote about James “Pinky” Hailstone’s daughter – Dorothy Hailstone Beale.

Hearing History: Dorothy Hailstone Beale


Hazel Hircko (left) and Dorothy Hailstone Beale (right)
ca 1936

Dorothy Beale (right)
ca 1993

Dorothy H. Beale: But I knew Dorothy.  And Dorothy Miles.  And Dorothy Castagno.  When I went to school, I went by “Margaret.”  
I said, “No, I’m not [going to be called Dorothy].  They’re going to get all mixed up!”
And so my first grade teacher, Mrs. McMaster she called my mother – or talked to my mother, we didn’t have phones – and she said, “Is it all right if she goes by Margaret?”  And my mother said, “If she wants to.”
So I went eleven years to school as Margaret.  And then when I was a senior, I wanted my first name on my graduation.  So the teachers sure raised Cain with me.  [chuckles]  Made me write my full name.
And you can imagine, on a sheet of paper like this, and you write Dorothy Margaret Hailstone, you’ve got half a page done!  [laughter]
MM:  That’s a long name.  So Margaret was your middle name that you decided to go by?
DHB:  Uh-huh.
MM:  That’s probably smart of you.  Because otherwise, they would have gotten mixed up.  That’s a lot of Dorothys.
DHB:  Oh, it was a funny situation.  I went all that time as Margaret.  And never thought anything about it until my senior year, and I thought, Oh, I want my first name on my diploma.  
I went twelve years to school and never missed a day.
MM:  Really?  You had perfect attendance?  Were you ever sick?
DHB:  No.
MM:  You were never sick?
DHB:  Not when I was young.
Dorothy Hailstone Beale was born in 1919 to James H Hailstone and Emma Greenier Hailstone. Dorothy was interviewed in 2006 by Maria McLeod as part of IHM’s oral history project. Dorothy talks about growing up in Issaquah, logging, and the Hailstone family. Her extensive interview covers many families in Issaquah as well as some fascinating discussion about the KKK and cultural and race relations in Issaquah.