125 years ago
April 20, 1894
Last week, one of the engines on the Port Blakely railroad broke down, causing the logging camps to shut down for two days.
S.G. Simpson is running two camps full blast, putting in about fifty-four cars daily and will have another camp ready to start in about two weeks.
Fred Cummings, one of the wood cutters for the Port Blakely Railroad Co., was killed Thursday, the 12th, by a large block of wood nearly five feet through, rolling on him; just how it was done, nobody knows as he was working alone. His wife went out with a lunch to him about half past two and found him dead with the block on top of him.
James Baldwin’s family are having quite a serious time with sickness, the children having the scarlet fever, Mr. Baldwin quite ill with the quinsy and Mrs. Baldwin not able to be around.
100 years ago
April 18, 1919
Adolph Metzger has a new car and says he is in favor of wider roads.
William Caldwell made his usual preaching trip last Saturday and Sunday to the North River section.
Mrs. G.H. Wartman returned from Seattle Sunday where she attended a conference of the Northwest division of the Red Cross.
Mrs. D.W. Fleet entertained at a bridge luncheon Friday afternoon at her home on Second Street.
75 years ago
April 20, 1944
A crime career ended suddenly for three youthful McCleary bandits Wednesday when Police Chief Aubrey Curran, assisted by Deputy Sheriff Jess Tyler, nabbed Gerald “Fat” Smith, Wayman Scaggs and Orville Kelly. The three had burglarized Chuck’s pharmacy in an attempt to get state-owned stocks of whiskey and had removed a panel in the rear of the store, taking several bottles. They were apparently frightened away — leaving behind a jacket and other clues with which Chief Curran used in getting a confession from them.
All are charged with second degree burglary and face five to 15 years imprisonment.
The high school play, “The Tin Hero,” given in the auditorium Friday evening, under the direction of Miss Lois Marchant, played to a capacity audience. Everyone connected with the production deserves credit for its success. The stage scenery, make-up and wardrobe all contributed to make the play effective.
The leading characters, portrayed by Don Osterberg, Pat Pickering and Helen Borro, all had very heavy parts and should be congratulated for remembering their lines without a hitch. Beverly Rasmusson and Bob Kurrie also had prominent parts, and did them very well.
Jane Marlow deserves special mention because her part called for a French accent, and she was very consistent in the part, adopting the vivacity and gestures of a French girl.
50 years ago
April 17, 1969
The possibility that the search for an additional medical doctor for the City of Montesano may be reaching an end was revealed this week by Charles Caldwell when he said, “We have had word from Dr. Apolinar Dizon of New York City, that he and his family will fly out to the west coast and arrive in Montesano April 24 for a four day stay. The prospective doctor is a licensed practitioner and surgeon.”
Caldwell has been the Chamber of Commerce chairman of a committee looking into the feasibility of acquiring an additional doctor for the city since Dr. James Moore left last summer, leaving Dr. M.C. Mindel as Montesano’s only medical doctor.
Another landmark in downtown Montesano bit the dust this last weekend as workmen dismantled The Independent Feed building on South Main Street. In the late twenties, the building housed the Davidson Brothers Auto Co., an organization that handled the old Willys automobile. Independent Feed moved recently to their new location on Wynooche Street behind the shopping center.
25 years ago
April 21, 1994
If You Ask Me, question of the week: “Do you support the idea of building a prison in Grays Harbor County?”
Connie Roderick, Montesano, traffic flagger: “I think that it would probably be a good idea, since a prison should economically help the county immensely. As far as the location is concerned, there shouldn’t be any security problem with that.”
Arnold Blancas, Cosmopolis, sanitation engineer: “I have mixed emotions about that. On the one hand, a prison in the area doesn’t sound too good. But, on the other hand, if such a facility were to generate jobs and help the general economy of the county, then it might not be a bad idea.”
Sharon Adams Aberdeen, secretary/receptionist: “No, I don’t support the idea. I have problems already with the county’s image and I’m afraid that such a facility would further downgrade that image and that people would be hindered in moving here.”
Arden Kommer, Ocean Shores, retired: “I don’t really have any strong opinion or objection to siting a prison here, except if a better site is available, I hope it goes elsewhere. No matter what happens, I do hope that when the final decision is made it will be made based on the best information available.
Eight members of Montesano’s Brownie Troop No. 139, guided by Leader Joan Nelson, trekked up some 2 miles off the Geissler Road last Monday to plant trees on an 80-acre parcel of land recently logged by Rayonier, Inc. The project was held to go hand-in-hand with both Arbor Day and Earth Day celebrations, and each girl earned her Arbor Day Patch for planting the seedlings. Candace Cahill, Rayonier’s coordinator for stumpage sales, accompanied the troop members to explain the concept of replanting after loggings and to show the scouts how to go about planting the seedlings.
10 years ago
April 16, 2009
One of Grays Harbor’s greatest friends recently passed away. Donald Edward Friend, co-founder of Friends Landing park south of Montesano, died Saturday, April 11. He was 79.
Don had long been involved in the heavy construction and gravel trades. He had been the owner and president of Friend and Rikalo, an Aberdeen-based heavy equipment and road construction company, for years, before moving on to other ventures.
Perhaps Don’s most notable contribution was his donation in 1988 of 152 acres that had been a gravel pit for Northwest Rock. Grays Harbor County Commissioners declined to buy the property for a park, so Friend bought the land and donated it to a nonprofit group to turn into a fully accessible park.
“When he gave the park, he had no idea that he’d have mobility trouble himself and need a wheelchair,” said Elsie, his wife of 56 years.
Compiled from the archives of The Vidette by Karen Barkstrom. She can be reached at 360-537-3925 or firstname.lastname@example.org