Seventy-five years ago, Montesano graduates wore ‘royal blue’ gowns

Pages of the Past for May 23, 2019

125 years ago

May 25, 1894

Two of Montesano’s boys took a drive up the Wynooche last Sunday. Not being familiar with the crossings of the river they very naturally got into deep water. The buggy went under the water and the boys were carried down the stream. One of them, who never was known to swim a foot in his life, swam ashore with the agility of an expert, while the other is said to have hung up on a snag long enough to pray with the fervency of a preacher.


E.F. Shinabarger was down Tuesday from his ranch above Elma. He is now dividing his time about equally between farming and teaching, and is making a success of both.

100 years ago

May 23, 1919

Halferty & Edney, owners of the old cannery building, which is to be made into a modern fruit and vegetable cannery, were here the first of the week measuring and planning.


Attention to Knitters: The Montesano chapter requests that everyone who is knitting for refugees to bring it to the Red Cross rooms. Our allotment is to be shipped the first of June.


Eugene Taylor and Edwin Peterson spent Sunday at Oleyut and while there visited the wrecked ship Janet Carruthers.


The Wynooche Timber Company has had a survey made for a spur to their railroad north of Black Creek and have permission from about all of the ranchers to cross their holdings.


75 years ago

May 25, 1944

Commencement exercises for the Montesano high school will be held in the large gymnasium Thursday, May 25, at 8 o’clock p.m.

With the sound of the “Triumphal March,” played by the high school band, the 38 members of the class, dressed in royal blue caps and gowns will enter.


Memorial services will be held at 10 o’clock Tuesday morning, May 30, at the Montesano theatre under the directions of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion.

J. Herbert Johnson, officer of the day for both veteran organization, asks “that all fraternal and patriotic organizations meet at the City Hall at 9:30 a.m. and march to the theatre.”

“Every person in Montesano is urged to attend these services, not only to honor those who have paid the supreme sacrifice, but to also honor those who are serving our country now,” Johnson said.


The Montesano branch of the Daughters of Pioneers of Washington entertained over 300 guests at a tea last Thursday afternoon and evening at the USO hall. The event was a history-making one for Montesano.

Many of the daughters of those sturdy pioneers were dressed in their mother’s and grandmother’s dresses and bonnets.

A multitude of old and valued relics were on display. One was a very large cradle which had been made by John Esmond, and the first set of triplets to be born in Washington Territory were the first babies to sleep in it. One of those triplets died shortly after birth, and the two who survived were John Esmond Jr. and a girl, now Mrs. Julia E. Crane, our present county clerk of Grays Harbor County.

J.E. Calder, first publisher of the Montesano Vidette, contributed many relics of pioneer days, including a set of wooden stirrups, a spinning wheel, a candle mold and even an old fashioned lantern used by Mrs. Calder’s mother, Mrs. Emely C. French, while crossing the plains in the years 1853-54.

50 years ago

May 22, 1969

Earl Mobray of Montesano was one of the two winners in Sunday’s Clam Prix at Ocean Shores. Mobray shared the first place honors with Ed Valentine of Copalis Beach. Valentine dug his 18-clam limit in four minutes, 28 seconds. Mobray won the $250 prize for the greatest weight. His 18 clams weighed five and three-quarter pounds.

Mobray said he hadn’t planned on digging in the event, but was clam digging at Ocean Shores anyway, so entered the contest.

Approximately 500 spectators were on hand to watch the 40 contestants.


Nikki Chapin, daughter of the Rev. and Mrs. Russell Chapin of Montesano, and Daniel Hatton, son of Mrs. Dorothy Hulbert of Elma and the late James Hatton were crowned May queen and king during Grays Harbor College’s annual May Dance Saturday night.

Miss Chapin is student body secretary of the college, and will become the bride of Mr. Hatton on June 7. Hatton is student body president and a member of the student council. Following their marriage, both will attend the University of Wisconsin this fall.

25 years ago

May 26, 1994

Elma High School’s Top Ten students: Troy Dougherty, valedictorian; co-salutatorians Stephen Rennie and Robin Ireland; Amanda Poston, Marlee Olson, Ann Greene, Jeanette Beerbower, Leilani Wickwire, Lesley Holt and Earl Lusby.


A total of 70 bicycles were registered and marked last Saturday by members of the Montesano Police Department assisted by Kiwanis Club members at a special Bicycle Rodeo on a roped off First Street between Marcy and Pioneer streets. The youngsters who brought their bikes to the event were taught the basic safety rules when riding, as well as wearing a helmet and looking both ways before crossing an intersection. The rodeo also included an obstacle course complete with such common road hazards as rocks and cement blocks.


John Bebich, county coroner, had a busy April as he investigated a total of 18 deaths countywide. Of the 18 deaths, two were attributed to traffic accidents and 16 were listed as natural.

Five of the April deaths were located in Ocean Shores while three were in Aberdeen and two each in Montesano, Hoquiam and Central Park. There was only one death each in Grayland, Humptulips, Elma and Montesano rural.

10 years ago

May 21, 2009

Gov. Chris Gregoire proclaimed April 12-18 as Public Safety Telecommunications Week. During the week-long celebration, Grays Harbor E-911 presented its annual Telecommunicator Recognition Awards for exemplary job performance.

Department officials reported that Darlena Iverson was selected to receive the Outstanding Sustained Job Performance Award for her continued knowledge, dedication and team leadership. Natalie Streifel was selected to receive the Critical Incident Award for her role in handling the birth of a breech baby. And Shannon Bunnell was recognized for her on-going work on managing the agency’s schedule and making “magic happen on a daily basis” under the Special Projects Award.


The Montesano High School baseball team was recently named the Class 1A State Academic Champions by the Washington Interscholastic Athletics Association and Les Schwab Tires according to a press release.

The 16 Bulldog baseball participants coached by Mike Bruner, averaged a 3.518 grand point average.

Compiled from the archives of The Vidette by Karen Barkstrom. She can be reached at 360-537-3925 or