My Pacific Northwest

Scow with 622 TONS of ammunition goes blooy! in Elliot Bay – May 15, 1915

Via: HistoryLink.org

On May 30, 1915, a few minutes before 2 a.m., the scow T.T.B., warehousing 622 tons of Hercules power (i.e., ammunition) and tied to a city buoy at the Elliott Bay end of Harbor Island, ignites. In Seattle, the few locals and tourists still awake get the frightful scare of a flash so brilliant it seems directly overhead. Within a second or two the city’s majority — ­ its sleepers ­– is shaken awake by a roar likened to the collapse of several large buildings combined with a percussion of “heavy air” hitting like a fist.

People were knocked from their beds. Motorists, lifted from their seats and separated from their steering wheels, had the air dragged from their lungs as the percussion first hit and then withdrew. More than 5,000 windows splintered and separated from their sashes, searching for the vacuum that followed the wave of combustion.

Nearly 500 plate-glass windows cracked or shattered. Along the east side of streets in the central business district — ­ the side facing the explosion — windows crashed to the nearly deserted sidewalks. In minutes thousands of people in bathrobes and overcoats milled in the downtown streets on a carpet of glass shards, thinking earthquake, meteor, or sabotage. Adding to the confusion were fire trucks chasing in all directions the false alarms set off by the blast.

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EVERY authority available for interview was sure it was a plot. Probably a plot by two German agents whom the Burns Detective Agency had been hired to trail by Japanese shippers contracted to haul the dynamite to Vladivostok.

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and then,

Roy Lillico, the private launch operator in charge of the scow, assured reporters that cased dynamite was “as safe as so much brown sugar.” Lillico declared “it was exploded by someone with a desire to injure the cause of the Allied armies. I¹m sure of it.” Lillico recounted that soon after the dynamite arrived from San Francisco on May 14, the captain of the Kaifuku Maru, the Japanese vessel scheduled to carry it to Russia, received an anonymous letter threatening to blow up his ship if he followed through with this plan. As a precaution, Lillico had hired a day-labor watchman ­– his friends called this watchman “Fat” — to watch over the T.T.B. Certainly, some thought, Fat had been blown-up with the barge. Others thought the saboteurs had persuaded him to disappear.

A FAT WATCH was organized with public pleas to look out for him.

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and then, and then,

The Alleged Mr. Brown and His Alleged Wife (Mrs. Brown?)

Every available agent — federal, state, county, local –­ was sent running down clues. The first break came from Tacoma (the blast had been heard, seen, or felt from Port Townsend to Tacoma.) On the day before the explosion, a man calling himself Walter Brown had purchased 500 feet of fuse from a local company.

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If you dare, you can read the rest of the whacky report, HERE:

http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?displaypage=output.cfm&file_id=1503

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“Nearly 500 plate-glass windows cracked or shattered, along the EAST side of streets in the central business district — ­ the side facing the explosion”

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Q: It’s been awhile since I’ve been in Seattle, but I thought Elliott Bay was WEST of the central business district; so, did they move the bay, or what?

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May 31, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Fruit Crate Art

Via: Shorpy: “Always Something Interesting”

From the 1900s to 1950s fruit crate labels were used to market fruit packer brands at farmer markets across the United States.

circa 1940

“Yakima Chief ‘Choice’ Evaporated Apples.  All the properties of the Apple except the water. Washington Dehydrated Food Co. Yakima, Washington, U.S.A.”

http://vintagraph.com/fruit-crate-labels/

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Yakima Nation – wikipedia

The Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation, or simply Yakama Nation (formerly Yakima), is a Native American group with nearly 10,000 enrolled members, living in Washington. Their reservation, along the Yakima River, covers an area of approximately 1.2 million acres (5,260 km²). Today the nation is governed by the Yakama Tribal Council, which consists of representatives of 14 tribes and bands.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yakama_Nation

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Photograph of a Yakima man by Edward S. Curtis

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/lewisandclark/record_tribes_063_13_34.html

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May 30, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Memorial Day – Washington State Roll of Honor

Via: HistoryLink.org

HistoryLink is honored to offer the first Web posting of a comprehensive roster of Washington state citizens — more than 9,000 as of 2007 — who gave their lives in the service of their communities and country. The Roll of Honor includes men and women who died during the  Philippine Insurrection (1899-1904) and subsequent military conflicts, as well as Public Safety Personnel — law
enforcement officers and firefighters — who lost their lives in the line of duty.

Names are listed alphabetically for each category. Given its length, the roster (6,302) of World War II casualties is further divided into alphabetical sections.

http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?displaypage=output.cfm&file_id=7092

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My Uncle Dave is listed here, as he is on the wall of the ‘Manila American Cemetary and Mermorial’ (photo).

The Manila American Cemetery and Memorial in the Philippines occupies 152 acres on a prominent plateau, visible at a distance from the east, south and west. It contains the largest number of graves of our military dead of World War II, a total of 17,202, most of whom lost their lives in operations in New Guinea and the Philippines.

The headstones are aligned in 11 plots forming a generally circular pattern, set among masses of a wide variety of tropical trees and shrubbery.

http://www.abmc.gov/cemeteries/cemeteries/ml.php

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“Praise the Lord, and Pass the Ammunition”

http://jonsfamily.wordpress.com/2009/06/04/praise-the-lord-and-pass-the-ammunition/

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May 29, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

‘Sonicsgate’, the movie

photo: 1979 NBA World Champions, Seattle Supersonics

Via: Sonicgate.org

http://sonicsgate.org/

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REVIEWS:

The Most Persuasive Grassroots Flick of 2009

“Don’t be fooled by the price tag: This pitch-perfect documentary shows the collateral damage when a team leaves town.”

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★★★★ out of ★★★★★

“The movie’s unsettling truth is out there for all to learn: A fan’s love for their team can be taken away by outside forces…  That series of unfortunate events is expertly recounted and explained in the absorbing documentary, Sonicsgate.”
– Sports Illustrated

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★★★½ out of ★★★★
“More than just a sports film, Sonicsgate also reveals some larger truths about government and big business, that ultimately everything comes down  to ego, power and money.”
— Bob Condotta, The Seattle Times Movie Review

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personal thought:

As a long-time-Sonics-fan, I take no joy in the Mavs beating the Thunder in five; okay, you’re right, maybe a little.

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May 26, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tacoma – George H. Weyerhaeuser (age 9) is kidnapped on May 24, 1935

Via: HistoryLink.org

On May 24, 1935, George H. Weyerhaeuser (b. 1926), age 9, is kidnapped off the street in Tacoma, Washington, in broad daylight.

His captors mail a note to the Weyerhaeuser family demanding $200,000 for the boy’s safe return.  After George’s father, John Philip Weyerhaeuser Jr., pays the ransom, the boy is released in rural Issaquah on June 1, 1935, unleashing “the greatest manhunt in the history of the Northwest.”  The kidnapping is one of the most sensational crimes in Washington state history.

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The article goes on to tell a fascinating tale about the ransom payment, and the return of the kid; which you can read, HERE:

http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?displaypage=output.cfm&file_id=7724

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You can read about the arrest and trial, HERE:

http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?displaypage=output.cfm&file_id=7750

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my thoughts:

I think it would be a stretch to call it ‘CSI-Tacoma’; but hey, the FBI did a terrific job.

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May 25, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Pineda: Poster child for curing Mariners blues

Via: TNT

The absolute joy with which Michael Pineda has embraced all things baseball – and everything about the Seattle Mariners – is starting to spread like a smile across his team.

He is 23 and, yes, a bit naive. More than a bit awed by the fun of it.

Tonight, in his ninth big-league start, he won his sixth game with seven shutout innings of the San Diego Padres, delighted in talking about his first professional at-bats, his first base-running exploits and, of course, his pitching.

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Pineda’s earned run average is now 2.16, and in 58 1/3 innings, he’s walked 14 batters and struck out 61.

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http://blog.thenewstribune.com/mariners/2011/05/21/pineda-poster-child-for-curing-mariners-blues/

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SUMMARY:

23-year-old rookie

9 games, 6 wins

58-1/3 innings

2.16 ERA

14 walks

61 k’s

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Possible AL rookie of the year?

I think it’s way to early to say, but yeah.
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He was good in March, but he is even better now.

https://jonspnw.wordpress.com/2011/03/12/m%e2%80%99s-michael-pineda/

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May 23, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Fruit Crate Art

Via: Shorpy.com – “Always Something Interesting”

http://vintagraph.com/fruit-crate-labels/single-gallery/4013923

This fruit crate label was used on Fashion Plate Northwest Apples, c. 1940s: “Fashion Plate Northwest Apples. Distributed by Boehmer Inc. Wenatchee, Washington. Contents One U.S. Bushel by Volume. Produce of U.S.A.”

Crate labels were a frequent means of marketing fruit and vegetable packer brands at the turn of the century.

May 22, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Tusko the elephant rampages through Sedro-Woolley on May 15, 1922

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Via: Historylink.org

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Clouds of chicken feathers burst from the coop, followed closely by the squawking, flapping birds themselves. Splinters and straw scattered in all directions as the coop walls came crashing down.

The Widow Dietz, stirred from slumber by the commotion in her backyard, rushed through her house, flinging open the rear door to see what was the matter. The last thing she expected to find was a seven-and-a-half-ton elephant standing where her chicken shed had been, its nine-foot tusks draped with twisted cage wire, feathers festooning its flapping Indian ears and the beast’s feet dancing a jig on her next morning’s supply of eggs.

Seeing the stunned Mrs. Dietz, the wayward mammoth raised his great gray trunk and let loose a triumphant trumpet call guaranteed to rouse the entire population of Sedro-Woolley.

http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?displaypage=output.cfm&file_id=5270

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photo: I looked, but was unsuccessful in finding a photo of Mrs Dietz.

However, the mention  of the chicken shed, got me thinking of my fellow Washingtonian, Ma Kettle (played brilliantly, by the late and great, Marjorie Main).

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May 19, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

North of Elma – 1939

Via: Shorpy. com – “Always Something Interesting:

http://www.shorpy.com/node/2968

August 1939

“Western Washington, Grays Harbor County, north of Elma. Hand irrigation on small rented subsistence farm. Family have been on place for one year.” 

Medium-format nitrate negative by Dorothea Lange.

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Dorothea Lange – Image Gallery

http://seattle98.wordpress.com/2011/04/27/dorothea-lange-image-gallery/

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May 13, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

‘Mercer Girls’ reach Seattle on May 16, 1974

Via: HistoryLink.org

On May 16, 1864, at 11 p.m. the first 11 Mercer Girls reach Seattle. To increase the supply of teachers and women in the Puget Sound area, Seattle resident Asa Mercer (1839-1917) recruits the women from the East Coast. Their ages range from 15 to 35. The contingent travels from New York via the Isthmus of Panama and San Francisco. Two of this group, Josie Pearson (d. 1864) and Catherine “Kate” Stickney (1834-1869), will die before the turn of the decade. Most teach school and then marry.

The first 11 Mercer Girls were:

1. Josephine “Josie” Pearson (died in August, 1864): Sister of Georgia. Taught
at Coupeville, Whidbey Island.

2. Georgia Pearson: Sister of Josie. Taught on Whidbey Island and then became
assistant lighthouse keeper at Admiralty Head near the entrance to Puget Sound.
Married Whidbey Island Pioneer Charley T. Terry.

3.  Sarah Cheney: Taught at Port Townsend and married Charles Willoughby.

4. Sarah J. Gallagher: Married Thomas Russell on April 24, 1865. Taught music
and school at the Territorial University in downtown Seattle.

5. Antoinette Baker: Taught in Pierce County and married a Mr. Huntington of
Monticello.

6. Aurelia Coffin: Taught at Port Ludlow and married a Mr. Hinckley there.

7. Lizzie Ordway (b. 1828): Taught at Whidbey Island. In 1870 she became a
Seattle Public School teacher. Later she taught at Port Madison, and became
superintendent of schools in Kitsap County.

8. Kate Stevens: Cousin of Kate Stickney. Married Henry Smith, a customs
inspector of Port Townsend.

9. Catherine “Kate” Stickney (1834-1869): Cousin of Kate Stevens. Married
Walter Graham on July 20, 1864.

10. Ann Murphy: She was the only one of this group who did not remain in the
Territory.

11. Annie Adams: Married Robert G. Head, an Olympia, Washington, printer.

http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?displaypage=output.cfm&file_id=166

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‘Believe it, or Not’ – there were 12 ‘Mercer Girls’.

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12 – Bambi (no last name) opened Seattle’s FIRST ‘topless’ espresso’ stand, on May 17, 1864.

https://jonspnw.wordpress.com/2011/04/15/shoot-crackdown-on-topless-espresso-stands/

Okay then, don’t Believe it.

🙂

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May 13, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment