Posts Tagged ‘Lake Retreat’

Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, September 4, 2002

By Barbara Nilson

The Tahoma baseball team of 1940 was largely made up of Ravensdale residents. They are: (front row) Gino Tedesco, Frank Primozich, Bob Lang, Gene Collins, Wally Habenicht, unknown, and Larry Krall; (second row) Otto Moore, coach; Frank Pooleskie and Louie Wallace; (back row) Frank Pichinini, Walt Olsen, Charles Fore, Kal Tantari, Bill Sweeney, Ed Kuhuski, and Tommy Lee — Photo compliments of the Maple Valley Historical Society

Memories will be flying fast and furious, Sunday, Sept. 15, as folks gather for the annual Ravensdale Reunion, 1 p.m., at the Maple Valley Community Center, corner of Witte Road S.E. and S.E. 248th St. The reunion is sponsored by the Maple Valley Historical Society.

No program is planned for the afternoon, just a chance to get-together over a cup of coffee and visit, share introductions and a tale or two over the open mic. (more…)

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Originally published in the MVHS Bugle, May 2000

By Barbara Nilson

Photos by Sherrie Acker

The “action” in the 1920s to 1950s, from Seattle south, was at the lake resorts in the Valley. Memories of those glory days were shared at the March program with Dolores Gaffney and Janet Bertagni talking about Gaffney’s Lake Wilderness resort, and Gloria Foss remembering the family’s resort on Shadow Lake.

Lake Wilderness resorts

Attending the historical society program on resorts were, from left, Janet Bertagni, Dolores Gaffney Judge, and Bernadine Gaffney Gebenini.

Dolores Gaffney, daughter of Tom Gaffney, reported her father and his brother Kain purchased the property on Lake Wilderness in 1926 from Abraham and Sam Cohen. The family moved to the lake and the resort opened in the spring of 1927 as Gaffney’s Lake Wilderness.

At that time there were three small family resorts on the lake. Dieckman with his two sons, Jeff and Don, had just started one, and across the lake was McKinney’s. McKinney’s also had a dance hall that was two stories high that they eventually turned into a skating rink. In April 1939 McKinneys sold their place to Gaffneys.

One of the older buildings was used for a dance hall, said Dolores, and they used kerosene lamps. In 1936 they built a new dance hall after the old one burned down. They had a 30-foot-high diving board as well as cabins, tennis courts, picnic areas, ball fields, and playgrounds.

In 1949 Diekmans and Gaffneys were combined and the Gaffneys decided to build a lodge. The design was developed by Young, Richardson and Carlson and won the grand prize from the Washington Chapter of Architects in 1951 and the top award from the American Institute in New York in 1952. The center column totem pole was carved by the famous Doug McCarter. It is 35 feet tall and weighs ten tons. (more…)

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Originally published in Northwest Nikkei, May 1994

By Ed Suguro

A 1924 photo of the Selleck Japanese community. T.Z.Maekawa is the man in the striped tie with hand in pocket, third row from top; Heiji Sakakibara is the man standing next to him. The Rev. U.G. Murphy is sitting far right third row from bottom. Mr. Abo, the foreman, is sitting in the middle with the baby.

Before World War II there were a number of company sawmill towns like Mukilteo, Snoqualmie, Selleck, Eatonville, National, Onalaska, Walvill, and Longview in which the Issei worked and the Nisei grew up.

Selleck was about 10 miles east of Maple Valley and was recognized by the King County Landmarks Commission as a historical landmark and by the National Register as a historic district. It was a company town in which the Pacific States Lumber Company, one of the largest on the West Coast, employed a number of Issei.

Among those who lived there were T.Z. Maekawa, who worked at the mill, and the Rev. Joseph Sakakibara, who grew up there until high school. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Times, March 30, 1988

Hang a sharp right at the Cooper Tire sign outside the Bremmeyer Logging Co. shop, breeze through a shady patch of Douglas firs, and there it squats on a distant back corner of King County’s park at Ravensdale: the Gracie Hansen Building.

She was quite a gal, this Gracie, whose bare-breasted “Girlie Revue” both wowed and outraged Seattleites at the 1962 World’s Fair.

In those days the building was known as the Paradise International Nightclub. It was the hottest thing in town.

Now it’s as desolate as an abandoned farmhouse. (more…)

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Originally published in the Enumclaw Eagle, August 31, 1988

Annual picnic source of stories of coal, men

By Gordon Koestler

Retired miners John Streepy (left) and George Savicke shared a tale or two. (Eagle photo by Gordon Koestler.)

Retired miners John Streepy (left) and George Savicke shared a tale or two. (Eagle photo by Gordon Koestler.)

Deep within the spine of the Cascade Mountains, on either side of the summit, lie still-large coal reserves. Over the past 100 or so years, men like John Costanich, John Streepy, and George Savicke, supported by women like Mary Mihelich, have pulled the black diamonds out of mines near places like Wilkeson, Palmer, Roslyn, Carbonado, Cle Elum and, yes, Black Diamond.

Saturday, such men and women met to celebrate and remember that lifestyle at the annual Miners’ Picnic, conducted at a private park at the base of the Green River Gorge. Such luminaries as former U.S. Sen. Slade Gordon, now campaigning to return to the Senate, and Renton area state Rep. Mike Patrick thought enough of the Miners’ Picnic to attend the afternoon gathering, and King County Executive Tim Hill, 8th District Congressman Rod Chandler, and 31st District Rep. Ernie Crane were scheduled to put in appearances as well. (more…)

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Originally published in the Tacoma News Tribune, November 15, 1964

By Rod Cardwell

Down the Road a PieceIt was called “Lavender Town,” a Japanese settlement near the great lumber mill that flourished in Selleck … east out of Kent in the King County uplands that swing gradually into the Cascade Range.

And the women would appear outside among the flowers in their colorful kimonos, many in shades of purple … and the children came home from the English-speaking school to receive instruction in Japanese.

Today, Lavender Town, where the men went forth to labor for the Pacific States Lumber Co., is only a memory. … The mill, after fires and labor strife, ceased to operate just before World War II. … And with Pearl Harbor came the removal of the Japanese to camps far inland. Later, although peace prevailed and a mood of hate and suspicion had vanished, most of them never returned. (more…)

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Originally published in the Auburn Globe-Reporter, July 10, 1925


City and nearby resorts get fine publicity

Big advertising sign on west highway

This is the immense signboard erected by the Auburn Commercial club on the west highway a quarter mile north of Gallagher’s corner. A second similar sign is now under construction south of this corner. (more…)

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