Posts Tagged ‘World War I’

By By JoAnne Matsumura and Cary Collins

One hundred years ago—at 11 a.m., November 11, 1918—World War I came to a close. There were cheers and tears, singing and dancing, hugging and kissing. Spirits ran high. The men and boys would soon be coming home to their families, wives, and sweethearts. The planning began.

From small towns to the big cities, Americans welcomed and greeted their heroes with bands playing. The doughboys arrived by boat, train, bus, and some lucky enough to catch a ride with their fellows heading in the same direction. There were parades, community gatherings, speeches of appreciation, and presentations of honor. Who could forget the long awaited taste of mom’s apple pie? (more…)


Read Full Post »

Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, September 9, 1914

Pete Frederickson, Black Diamond butcher, won the prize for the most handsomely decorated auto.

Pete Frederickson, Black Diamond butcher, won the prize for the most handsomely decorated auto.

That the team entered by the local miners’ union was victorious in the mine rescue and first aid meet held in Black Diamond on Labor Day, defeating the fire bosses’ team organized by the mine operators, is the report to Seattle by William Short, state district secretary of the United Mine Workers, who served as master of ceremonies at Black Diamond’s celebration of the holiday. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Prepared for the membership of the PNR-NMRA, September 13, 1958

By H.A. Durfy

Coal—black diamonds—a source of heat, light, power, medicines, and many more products too numerous to mention here. This was the beginning of the Pacific Coast R.R. Co., upon which you are riding today. Of course, like other railroads, the Pacific Coast R.R. Co. was not always known by the present title, and we want to lead you through the background and the beginnings of the railroad. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Originally published in The Seattle Daily Times, May 14, 1918

Throughout the nation the call is resounding, “Lay in your next winter’s coal NOW.”

That is the urgent appeal of the United States Fuel Administration, and it applies with as much force in the State of Washington as in any other state in the Union, so officials of the administration point out it is a patriotic duty as well as a measure of preparedness to see that the fuel bin is filled up quickly, for the nation is facing such problems as never confronted her before in the mining and distribution of coal.

Industries, especially those engaged in war work, have first call on the coal production, and they are going at fever heat, with an acceleration that means a continual increase in coal consumption.

To move crops and war materials next fall and winter will require the entire car capacity of all the railroads. This means that the cars must get in their work now in hauling the coal you will need next winter. Nor does a car shortage condition impend only in the Eastern states. (more…)

Read Full Post »

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…)

Read Full Post »

Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, February 23, 2010

By Bill Kombol

‘Welsh’ Bill Morris, Jackie Warren, and Jim Thomas (left to right) are shown here in Palmer, Washington, in the early 1940s. Both coal miners came to the U.S. from Wales in 1927-28 to work at the Durham mine of the Morris Brothers Coal Mining Company. Both were immigrants sponsored by their American relative, George Morris.

George was a Welsh immigrant who came to America in 1880, eventually establishing his family and children as successful coal miners and livery stable owners in the mining town of Wilkeson. George Morris was later part-owner of the Durham coal mine.

Welsh immigration to the U.S. began in earnest in 1850s, with a peak decade during the 1890 when over 100,000 arrived. The 1920s saw continued Welsh immigration as coal mining in Wales fell at the conclusion of World War I. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Originally published in the Voice of the Valley, February 15, 1978

Hellos and goodbyes were expressed last week at the Black Diamond Post Office; goodbyes to Betty Godfrey and hellos to our new postmaster, Gerald Mongrain.

Betty has served since last August in the interim position of Officer-in-Charge for the Postal Service. She has been on loan from Issaquah where she served as head window clerk and where she will now return. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »