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Originally published in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, June 19, 1887

A correspondent in Maple Valley sends us the following incident of frontier life:

Mr. and Mrs. Lampson reside on Ed Cramer’s farm in Maple Valley. During the evening of June 18th, Mrs. Lampson went out of doors, and in the distance, by the light of the moon, saw a large black bear.

“She called to her husband, who, on coming to the door, saw the monster coming into the yard near the house. He ran back and got his gun from the wall, and in his fright he leveled it at the animal, but it flashed in the pan, the powder being damp, and not igniting from the percussion of the cap. Continue Reading »

Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, August 23, 2016

By Bill Kombol

Maple Valley’s third depot dates to 1953, shortly after it was built.

Maple Valley’s third depot dates to 1953, shortly after it was built.

Over the near century from 1885 to 1982, Maple Valley hosted three different railroad stations, all located in old Maple Valley just north of where Highway 18 overpasses SR-169. This photo of the third Maple Valley depot dates to 1953 shortly after it was built.

The Maple Valley station was an important cog for directing rail traffic as trains could be switched to Black Diamond, Taylor, or up the Cedar River through Landsburg into the watershed. Continue Reading »

Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, August 16, 2016

By Bill Kombol

This photo of the Maple Valley railway depot was taken in 1948 as viewed looking northbound along the Maple Valley highway (aka SR-169). The depot was also used as the dispatcher’s office.

It was the second railroad station in Maple Valley, replacing the first constructed in 1885, when the original rail line was built to access coal from the newly developed town of Black Diamond. Continue Reading »

Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, June 14, 1978

By George and Dianne Wilson

Darrel and Jewell McCloud are here seen at their Black Diamond home among their gorgeous flowers which include 350 rosebushes “and much, much morel”

Darrel and Jewell McCloud are here seen at their Black Diamond home among their gorgeous flowers which include 350 rosebushes “and much, much more!”

Over 350 roses, more than 150 tuberous begonias, plus much, much more can be seen in one gorgeous spot in Black Diamond! No, it’s not a park or a nursery; it’s the home of Darrel and Jewell McCloud on 1st Street, across from the elementary school.

When the McClouds moved here 34 years ago from Ellensburg, they brought with them six or eight roses. Over the years, their collection has “grown like Topsy,” often through the Valentine’s Day gifts of rose bushes for Jewell from their son Michael. They now have 56 new roses imported from Canada. Continue Reading »

Originally published in the Pacific Coast Bulletin, June 14, 1923

If working a shift in Black Diamond Mine was no harder for the four men shown above than it was for them to pose for this picture, there would always be a mad scramble among the men to see who could get the first man-trip down.

At the left we introduce to you, George Belt, and next to him, Fred Cunningham, a former Issaquah miner. The man next in line is R.E. “Curly” Campbell and the young Hercules at the extreme right is Darwin Walton. Continue Reading »

Originally published in the Enumclaw Courier, June 13, 1913

These buildings were located where the Green River Eagles #1490 is today.

Fire broke out in the Black Diamond Hotel last Friday morning at about 2 o’clock, said to be caused by a man’s carelessness in smoking in one of the rooms. The building and contents were entirely destroyed, and the flames spread to Pete Fredericksen’s meat market adjoining, and a nearby residence, both being consumed.

A small safe containing considerable money, a cash register, and some books were saved from the market. Some meat was also carried out, but much of it was stolen after being placed beyond the reach of the flames. The insurance on all the property was small and the loss consequently was considerable.

Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, August 9, 2016

By Bill Kombol

No piece of railroad equipment has inspired more slang terms than the caboose. It is the cage, hack, crummy, parlor, or hut – it is the zoo, the coop or the brain wagon.

No piece of railroad equipment has inspired more slang terms than the caboose. It is the cage, hack, crummy, parlor, or hut – it is the zoo, the coop, or the brain wagon.

According to the 1948 Rotogravure magazine article about the Pacific Coast Railroad (PCRR), “Railroading has produced as distinctive a lexicon as it is possible for forthright and uninhibited men to dream up.” Continue Reading »