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Posts Tagged ‘Seattle & Walla Walla Railroad’

Originally published in the Seattle Daily Intelligencer, May 18, 1880

One of the most convincing proofs of the steady growth and prosperity of our territory is to be found in the development and increased capacity of our coal mines. And, for an example we will take one, near at hand—the Newcastle mine—situated near Lake Washington, in the central portion of our county to demonstrate this proposition. (more…)

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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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Originally published in the Seattle Sunday Times, December 25, 1955

By Lucile McDonald

Promoters once saw Renton as the future site of great industrial development. This illustration was in advertising literature about 1910. The artist conceived a line of piers along the lake front and vessels entering the Cedar River. Steamers and sailing vessels were shown on Lake Washington. – Courtesy Renton Chamber of Commerce.

Promoters once saw Renton as the future site of great industrial development. This illustration was in advertising literature about 1910. The artist conceived a line of piers along the lake front and vessels entering the Cedar River. Steamers and sailing vessels were shown on Lake Washington. –Courtesy Renton Chamber of Commerce.

The man who has lived in Renton longer than any other person—John E. Hayes, 13612 S.E. 128th St—well remembers the day in December, 1897, when the first standard-gauge train reached the town. He ought to; he was firing the engine.

The Columbia & Puget Sound Railroad had bought the narrow-gauge coal line of the Seattle & Walla Walla Railroad and extended it in 1882 to Black Diamond and Franklin. It left Seattle on a right-of-way shared with the Northern Pacific, a third rail being laid to accommodate the narrow-gauge cars bound for Renton. (more…)

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Originally published in The Seattle Sunday Times, October 19, 1952

Seattle Sunday Times, October 19, 1952The view of Maple Valley in autumn depicted on Page 1 of this Magazine Section appealed to Parker McAllister, Times staff artist, as most appropriate for inclusion in his series of rural scenes in the Puget Sound country. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, July 26, 2016

By Bill Kombol

The old callboard of the C&PS can be seen slightly above the new board installed in the PCRR terminals at South Alaskan Way near Dearborn on the Seattle waterfront – just west of CenturyLink stadium.

The old callboard of the C&PS can be seen slightly above the new board installed in the PCRR terminals at South Alaskan Way near Dearborn on the Seattle waterfront – just west of CenturyLink stadium.

This is the second of a series, which details the workings of the Pacific Coast Railroad (PCRR) late in its corporate life. Founding as the Columbia & Puget Sound Railroad (C&PS), from the ashes of the Seattle & Walla Walla, PCRR was profiled in a 1948 Rotogravure magazine, which included this photo of the engine dispatcher’s board. (more…)

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Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, July 19, 2016

By Bill Kombol

This January 20, 1948 photo shows a PCRR engine pulling loaded coal cars as they cross over the Cedar River near Maplewood Golf Course in Renton.

This January 20, 1948, photo shows a PCRR engine pulling loaded coal cars as they cross over the Cedar River near Maplewood Golf Course in Renton.

This column’s focus over the next several weeks will be the Pacific Coast Railroad (PCRR), previously known as the Columbia & Puget Sound (C&PS). Perhaps no other single venture was more important to the development of the Maple Valley–Black Diamond area than the railroad. (more…)

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Originally published in the Seattle Times, April 2, 1961

(This is the first in a series of articles which will appear from time to time about lost towns of King County.)

By Lucile McDonald

Overlooking the site of the mining community of Cedar Mountain is a window on the south side of the home of Mrs. Edith Cavanaugh. On the table were deeds to the Cavanaugh land, signed by Presidents Grant and Arthur. —Times photo by Roy Scully.

Overlooking the site of the mining community of Cedar Mountain is a window on the south side of the home of Mrs. Edith Cavanaugh. On the table were deeds to the Cavanaugh land, signed by Presidents Grant and Arthur. —Times photo by Roy Scully.

Lost towns of King County rival in mystery the ghost towns of gold-mine country. The thing about them is that most have vanished without a trace—not so much as a weathered heap of timber or a false-front abandoned store to indicate that at this or that road junction stood a community of several hundred persons.

Any map of 50 years ago or more is sprinkled with place names where nothing to indicate a community exists today. Some of them were swallowed by the Cedar River watershed. Others died from natural causes.

Who could find Taylor, Kerriston, Cedar Mountain, Sherwood, Eddyville, and Barneston today? Who would know about Henry’s Switch, Atkinson, Trude, Holmar, Herrick, Danville, and Durham?

Yet, these names remain on the map, monuments to another time, when coal mines and sawmills attracted population to the foothills of the Cascades. (more…)

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