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Posts Tagged ‘Palmer’

Originally published in the Enumclaw Courier-Herald, September 27, 1935

Coal mines in the Enumclaw district were stilled this week with the announcement of the nationwide soft coal miners strike. The local union members joined in the nationwide strike and about 2,000 miners in this state are now on strike. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, September 23, 1910

Blow of pick pours torrent into Occidental Mine No. 3 at Palmer, ruining coal workings

Heroes volunteer to save unlucky workman

George Brinn doomed, if not already dead, despite efforts to reach victim of rising water

Rising on the slope at the rate of eight inches an hour, water from an underground river which was tapped by the pick of George Brinn, a miner, has completely flooded Occidental Mine No. 3 at Palmer, King County, and now stands at ninety feet on the slope. Brinn is missing and doubtless lost his life when the flood descended on him and in the heroic effort of fellow miners to rescue him dead or alive, two of them, Pit Boss William Barringer and Abner Farmer, a miner, just escaped drowning. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, September 14, 1899

New steel rails from Lester to the mountains

M. Dempsey, superintendent of construction of this division of the Northern Pacific, in speaking of the physical condition of that road says:

“We have just completed putting in new steel rails from Lester to Palmer and from Easton to the foot of the mountain. We do not anticipate any more trouble in the tunnels. No. 1, just west of Easton will be permanently abandoned, and the work of construction brick arches within the other is being pushed. There are four tunnels which remain to be arched, and the work on all of them will be completed before winter sets in.”

Mr. Dempsey says that the Northern Pacific is being handicapped in construction work along its line on account of the scarcity of railroad laborers, and that some of the work now In hand has been practically suspended until laborers shall have returned from the hop fields.

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Originally published in The Seattle Sunday Times, August 2, 1908

By “W.T.P.”

Suppose you were a policeman with a beat of 700 square miles.

Suppose this included sixteen coal mining towns, where the rough element predominated, and fights, murders, and all sorts of crimes succeeded each other so rapidly that you hardly had a breathing space between.

Suppose you were the only officer of the law in all this district, and that your hours were from 8 o’clock every morning, including Sunday, to 8 o’clock the next.

Suppose your duties had thrown you into desperate fights, open revolver battles, chases that lasted for days at a time through the seemingly trackless woods, and that a dozen times you had been within an inch of your life.

If you could meet all these conditions you would be the counterpart of Matt Starwich, deputy sheriff for the district of Ravensdale, and you would be an “every-day hero.” There are few people in the county who have more deeds of heroism to their credit than this same Matt Starwich. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Times, July 29, 1987

Horseshoe pitching is more than just a picnic folly for the Heines

Elwood and Ken are teammates on the Green River Tavern team.

Elwood and Ken are teammates on the Green River Tavern team.

Meet Elwood and Kenneth Heine, the “shoes brothers.”

The Heines pitch horseshoes with passion and precision. They’ve flung the weighty good-luck pieces with South King County’s best for more than a decade. In the horseshoe pits, the Heines make their own luck.

For Elwood and Ken, horseshoe pitching is more than a picnic folly. It’s an art, a rhythmic exercise with a rustic beat—the thud of the shoe in the sand, its clink against the metal stake. Nearly every other horseshoe they loft snuggles perfectly around its target.

Close does count in horseshoes—a point is awarded if the shoe is within six inches of the stake—but for the Heines, only a “ringer” will do. (more…)

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Originally published in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, May 17, 1891

J.C. Dillon crushed to death by a railroad train in a peculiar manner

Palmer, May 16 (Special) — While J.C. Dillon was at work on the track at Palmer station Friday morning the overland train came along unexpectedly.

He jumped out of the way and struck against a tripod which had been left close to the track with point toward it, so that there was only just room for cars to pass. He was crushed to death between the cars and tripod, the pulley block being jammed into his back.


Palmer was originally a telegraph station on the Northern Pacific Railway opened during the construction of the railway’s line across Stampede Pass circa 1886.

Between 1899 and 1900 the Northern Pacific built a cut-off from Palmer Junction (just east of Palmer), crossing the Green River to Kanaskat, and thence westward to Ravensdale, Covington, and finally Auburn.

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Originally published in the Washington State Historical Society’s quarterly journal, Columbia, Spring 1994

By John Hanscom

Drawing of Franklin, circa 1887.

Bird’s-eye-view map of Franklin Mine and its environs, c. 1890. (Courtesy of Don Mason and the Black Diamond Historical Society.)

Henry Villard launched the Oregon Improvement Company in October 1880 as part of his grand scheme to dominate the development of the Pacific Northwest. By 1883 he had tied the area to the national economy with the completion of the Northern Pacific Railroad. Expansive development of the Pacific Northwest seemed assured.

To fuel Villard’s steamships and locomotives, a dependable coal supply was a high priority. By February 1881 the Oregon Improvement Company had acquired the Seattle Coal and Transportation Company, including the Newcastle Mine east of Lake Washington, at a cost of one million dollars. The Seattle and Walla Walla Railroad (renamed the Columbia and Puget Sound) was also purchased for over half a million dollars to transport coal from mine to Seattle bunkers. Villard hired John L. Howard under a five-year contract at $10,000 per year as general manager of the coal business. (more…)

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