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Posts Tagged ‘Lake Wilderness’

Originally published in Northwest Real Estate Showcase, August 1, 1992

By Sharron Lamb

Welcome to historic Black Diamond … Village with a view.

So reads the sign greeting southbound travelers on Highway 169—better known as the Maple Valley Highway. On a clear day, drivers might miss the sign because of the distraction of Mount Rainier, but the world-famous Black Diamond Bakery guarantees that the town will not just be a drive-through on the way to the King County Fair or Crystal Mountain.

Most of the 1,500 residents of the old mining town live here because it’s quiet and peaceful. Some probably hope no one is reading the paper today. There are mixed feelings about this “diamond in the rough” as it is being discovered, and about to be “polished.” (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Sunday Times, June 11, 1916

Lake trip ideal for motorists

Magnificent scenery found on tour to White Sulphur Spring—road passes along Cedar River Gorge

Abundant sport waits fishermen’s coming

Beauty spots on scenic drive. Two river canyons, each leading back into the Cascades, are followed on the tour presented by The Times today, terminating at Lake Wilderness, twenty-nine miles distant from the city. The colored illustration shows The Times pathfinder car, the Hupmobile, as it arrived at the lake shore. Below, in the accompanying photograph, is a view of the Green River canyon, shortly after the car had crossed the hill from Black Diamond.

Less than thirty miles from Seattle, at the end of a pathway which leads through ever-changing scenery, along the magnificent Cedar River gorge and up into the mining section of King County, lies Lake Wilderness, towards which The Times pathfinder car, a Hupmobile, blazed the trail for the second of the 1916 series of tours and the twenty-sixth in the grand total thus far logged by this newspaper.

The car, kindly furnished by Mr. Louis P. Schaeffer of the William T. Patten Motor Company, and driven by D.P. Dean, left The Times Building at Second Avenue and Union Street shortly after 9 o’clock and was at Lake Wilderness in ample time to permit an hour’s fishing in the lake before noon as an appetizer.

During the afternoon, the return was made by way of Black Diamond and Auburn, a slightly longer route but well worth the extra effort. In addition to providing variety to the trip, the alternate highway descended into a country of splendid roads and fascinating scenery, joining the Pacific Highway thence into Seattle. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, September 18, 1918

Though Cedar River boasts more fishermen per square foot along its banks than any other stream in King County, it is still favored by local anglers who follow the river up to its head at Landsberg. The usual run of fishermen stop off about six miles below this point at Maple Valley or else fish anywhere between Renton and Cedar Mountain, but these are old grounds habituated by numbers of picnic parties and campers who spoil any chance for real sport. (more…)

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Originally published in the MVHS Bugle, September 2007

Bud and Ora Mable (Babe) relax in the living room of their remodeled cabin they purchased in Orchard Grove 61 years ago. Photo by Barbara Nilson.

In 1946 Babe Bodvin was traveling down Dorre Don Way visiting a friend of her mother’s when she spotted a two-room cabin for sale. It was owned by a doctor who had built it in 1936. She went home to Seattle to ask her husband, Bud, if they could buy it at $850 for an acre of ground and the cabin. He said yes and 61 years later they’re still there.

They celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary in April. Bud said they were married in her folk’s home right where the Space Needle is today. Her folks, Charles and Capitoly Werl, later moved to Hobart in the 1940s.

Bud said, “All there was to the cabin was a kitchen and the room that is now their living room, nothing else; no ceilings, no running water, an outhouse, we used the fireplace for heat.” (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 North Maple Valley Living, April 2019

By JoAnne Matsumura

Anglers took to the lakes and streams at dawn for opening day of fishing on “All Fool’s Day,” April 1, 1919, and those along the Cedar River reported “the fish were biting fine.”

State Game and Fish Commissioner L.H. Darwin reported that this was best year ever for angling with excellent conditions in King County. At Lake Wilderness, the water was clear, fairly high, with trout being taken principally, yet offering good bass.

Licenses in the state exceeded 2,500, and school attendance was expected to have a marked decrease with a flood of creative excuses. Game wardens were on the job for fishing pranks, fish under 6 inches, and those setting traps. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, April 14, 1976

By D’Ann Pedee

Bicentennial quilt: Thirty Maple Valley women are now putting the finishing touches on a handcrafted quilt as part of their Bicentennial year activities. The thirty patches, some of which are shown above, will depict this area historically, spotlighting some of its past and present. — Voice photo by Bob Gerbing

How do you place a value on a handcrafted quilt?

Perhaps by the amount of money it can be sold for or by averaging the time and services spent in completing it.

When finished, the Maple Valley Arts Committee could possibly have a three-thousand-dollar product on its hands. That’s the amount of money it is hoped will raised by raffling be of the Bicentennial quilt that thirty local women are in the process of completing. (more…)

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Originally published in the MVHS Bugle, December 2006

By Wayne D. Greenleaf

My parents, Glen and Vera Greenleaf, moved to Maple Valley in August of 1937. I was 9 years old, my brother Kenneth was 11½. We were born in Centralia during the Great Depression. My Dad was a plasterer and bricklayer—no jobs in Centralia. My grandfather on my mother’s side and three of his children had bought land east of Fiddler’s Comer. He talked my folks into coming up and looking.

We bought 40 acres from Weyerhaeuser, northeast of Fiddler’s Corner, 1½ miles back in the woods. $600 total, no interest and $15 a month; if you couldn’t make the $15 month, they let it go. I think at one time we were over two years behind. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, August 2, 1978

Happy anniversary! The picturesque Maple Valley branch of the King County Library System, shown above, is observing the tenth year at its present location this summer.

Happy anniversary! The picturesque Maple Valley branch of the King County Library System, shown above, is observing the tenth year at its present location this summer.

The present Maple Valley Library building is ten years old this summer.

Librarian Pat Simmons took a few minutes away from her chores this week to tell the Voice a bit about the origin and development of the picturesque building on Highway 169 across from Wilderness Village.

The library opened its doors on July 14, 1968. Construction costs came to $112,000 and were provided by a county bond issue and matching funds from the Federal Library Service and Construction Act. The 4,000-foot building can accommodate 25,000 books. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, July 1995

The old Lake Wilderness Conference building has new tenants and a new name. It is King County’s first community service center and be called Lake Wilderness Community Service Center. A grand opening is planned for August.

The old Lake Wilderness Conference building has new tenants and a new name. It is King County’s first community service center and be called Lake Wilderness Community Service Center. A grand opening is planned for August.

King County’s first Community Service Center located at Lake Wilderness Park in Maple Valley opens Wednesday, July 5, 1995 at 12 noon. King County Executive Gary Locke and community members will visit the Center at 1 p.m. A grand opening celebration will occur later in August. (more…)

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