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Posts Tagged ‘Italians’

Originally published in The Tacoma News Tribune, April 5, 1995

By Lisa Kremer
The News Tribune

Bob Eaton, president of the Black Diamond Historical Society, and his granddaughter Kelley Sauskojus are trying to get a miners’ cabin built in 1910 near Black Diamond designated a local historic landmark. (Peter Haley/The News Tribune.)

In 1910, two Italian men built a tiny house—barely big enough for beds, a stove, and a sink—to live in as they worked in the nearby mines of Black Diamond.

There’s not much to distinguish the house from hundreds of other small miner’s cabins that dotted the hillsides. Except that this house is still there, almost in its original condition.

Bob Eaton, president of the Black Diamond Historical Society, wants to preserve the house and designate it a local historic landmark. That would mean his granddaughter Kelley Sauskojus, who owns the cabin, could apply for state grants to repair and restore it.

But like all other South King County cities, Black Diamond doesn’t have a process to officially designate its local landmarks.

It’s so difficult to designate city landmarks that only two cities in King County—Seattle and Bothell—have done so, said Charlie Sundberg, a preservation planner with the King County Historic Preservation program. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, April 5, 1911

Giuseppe Piztorasi assessed $100 and $6.50 costs for conducting sporty nuisance at Black Diamond

Deputies on trail of explosion suspects

Racket made by several hundred Italians at Black Diamond at one of their national sports, cheese rolling, led to the arrest early Sunday morning of Giuseppe Piztorasi, who yesterday paid a fine of $100 and $6.50 costs for conducting a nuisance. Piztorasi was fined Monday by Justice of the Peace William W. Davis, and said that he would not pay the fine. But he concluded to do so yesterday morning just as Deputy Sheriff Joseph C. Hill was about to step upon the train with him to come to the county jail.

Hill and Deputy Sheriff Scott Malone have been staying at Black Diamond investigating the explosion of giant powder that wrecked the little home of Rasmus Christiansen, assistant superintendent of the Pacific Coast Coal Company. Blowing the ceiling from over the bed in which Christiansen, his wife, and baby were asleep. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, March 31, 1911

Confident that among the seven Italians now in the county jail under sentence of vagrancy are two guilty of exploding the dynamite that Tuesday morning at 3:30 wrecked the home of Rasmus Christiansen, assistant superintendent of the Pacific Coast Coal Company at Black Diamond, Sheriff Robert T. Hodge is keeping four deputies at Black Diamond gathering evidence.

The sheriff also thinks that the presence of the deputies in Black Diamond will doubly insure peace in the present state of high feeling between the American miners and the Italians. It is not anticipated that this will break out in the absence of a known miscreant upon which to vent itself. No further arrests have been made.

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, March 30, 1911

Deputy sheriffs forced to beat back ominous mob which surrounds shack used as jail

Dynamiting outrage followed by demonstration in which citizens take part as peace officers

1—The wrecked Christiansen home. 2—Where dynamite was exploded. 3—Interior of home after explosion. 4—Rasmus Christiansen. 5—Deputy Hill, at left, jailing a suspect at Black Diamond.

One hundred and fifty Italians, displaying all the voluble excitability of their race when in a dangerous mood, formed an ominous cordon about the little wooden shack that serves as a jail at Black Diamond yesterday afternoon when deputy sheriffs, after scouring the mining town all day, took into custody seven of their countrymen among whose number the authorities believe will be found one or more responsible for the dynamite outrage perpetrated on the home of Rasmus Christiansen early yesterday morning. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, March 29, 1911

Dynamiters try to kill family, wrecking home

Whole town aroused by loud detonation

Their lives the object of a vengeful attempt to blow them into eternity, Mrs. and Mrs. Rasmus Christiansen, of Black Diamond, early this morning escaped the death planned for them only because the five or more sticks of giant powder planted alongside their home by the unidentified assassin was beneath a section of the house far removed from that where they were sleeping.

Although the partitions of the house were blown out, and it was left an entire wreck, none of the Christiansens was hurt. Their escape was due to the fact they slept in a room that received the least of the shock, and that its force was broken by the springs and mattress of the bed. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, January 23, 2007

By Barbara Nilson

The town of Fairfax, declared the “prettiest mining town around,” showing the turn-table at the extreme right above center. Mine buildings are in front and the school is on the left. Carbon River runs through the trees at the top or the photo. (Original copy from Mr. and Mrs. Tony Basselli.) Photo courtesy of Steve Meitzler, Heritage Quest Press, Orting, WA., publisher of the book, Carbon River Coal Country.

Riding the Northern Pacific Railroad to the upper end of the Carbon River Canyon or tooling along to Mount Rainier in a Model T, tourists would pass close to three mining towns: Melmont, Fairfax, and Montezuma.

First, beyond Carbonado, was Melmont, situated between the Carbon River and the NPR line. A bridge spanning the Carbon River ran between the company hotel and the saloon with the depot and school on the hillside above. On the left end of the bridge was the road connecting to Fairfax. This bridge was nearly a little beyond the high bridge which spans the canyon today. (more…)

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Originally published in the Lake Sawyer Community Club newsletter, Winter 2019

By Bill Kombol

Jim Hawk at his Lake Sawyer home, March 25, 2017. Photo by Bill Kombol.

He’s lived on Lake Sawyer for nearly two-thirds of his life. That’s a long time for a 93-year-old who built his lake home in 1961. His name is Jim Hawk and he’s arguably done more to craft the Lake Sawyer we know today than any other person.

Jim Hawk was born in Seattle on April 27, 1926. His father, Ray Hawk, was of Dutch descent but left his Pennsylvania home at age 13. His mother, Mary Romano, was the daughter of Italian immigrants. His grandfather, Sam Romano, was blinded by a dynamite blast at age 18, returning to Italy where doctors restored his sight. Sam came back to Seattle and started a family-owned construction company, Romano Engineering, which developed the Riverton quarry and built highways, bridges, dams, and other projects. (more…)

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