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Pages of the Past

120 Years Ago

March 9, 1894

The second grand annual ball of the Montesano base ball club will be given at the rink on St. Patrick’s Day — Saturday, March 17. It will be the social event of the season. The steamer Josie Burrows has been chartered for the occasion, and will leave Hoquiam about 6 o’clock in the evening, stopping at Aberdeen and Cosmopolis and reaching Montesano no later than 8 o’clock. Carriages will be waiting to convey the harbor people to the rink and will return them after the dance, when the steamer will take them again to their respective homes. The bill for the harbor people will be $2.00 per couple, which will include everything — transportation, dance and supper. For home people, tickets to the dance will be $1.00 and 50 cents per couple for supper. Besides the harbor people expected, there will be a number down from Elma, and a big time is anticipated. Music will be provided by Gamage’s orchestra of Hoquiam.

The proceed of the dance will be devoted to building a grandstand on the ball grounds for the accommodation of spectators at the games.

100 Years Ago

March 5, 1914

There will be no strike of mill and logging camp employees of Grays Harbor and the Northwest on May 1. This was the announcement made by Charles Conrad, secretary of the Timber Worker’s union and returning delegate from the two-day conference at Seattle. The conference reversed the action of the Aberdeen convention of last month and it is now up to the employers of the lumber industry to say whether the eight-hour day for the shingle weavers, sawmill workers and woodsmen shall go into effect on May 1 or whether the demand of the organized timber workers for the shorter day shall be suspended pending the decision of the voters of the state on the state-wide eight-hour law — the Kingery bill — at the polls next November, the conference decided.

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P.S. Guilford has his new engine installed in his Westport cannery and has just received a new automatic crimping machine, which will enable him to handle all the clams that he can get. He has been giving his plant a thorough overhauling this winter and by the time the spring digging commences the cannery will be in a first-class condition. He will employ about twenty women and about eight men for inside work and thirty clam diggers, besides a couple of teams for hauling wood, etc.

75 Years Ago

March 9, 1939

Purchase of the corner of First Street and Pioneer Avenue, formerly occupied by the Reinhart Motor Company, was announced this week by V.I. Whitney.

The deal was made with Elmonte Investment Company, for an undisclosed consideration.

The site will be occupied by Whitney’s used car department, while the present used car department, the glassed in area around the present garage, will be converted into a heated storage department.

“Increases in our businesses have made additional room a necessity,” Whitney said, “The new department, directly across the street from our main plant, will be made into a convenient and attractive center for used cars.”

Whitney said he planned to remodel the old Reinhart building. The side facing First street will be streamlined, in keeping with changes that will be made on the Pioneer avenue front. The former office quarters will be removed and open display space made for at least six cars.

50 Years Ago

March 5, 1964

A.M. “Pat” Gallagher was appointed unanimously by Grays Harbor County commissioners as the new county sheriff Monday morning.

His appointment followed the resignation of Richard F. Simmons, who has been named head of the state safety council, a few minutes earlier.

Gallagher has been undersheriff for the past 18 months. Following his nomination for sheriff by Commissioner Leighton Powell and concurrence by Commissioner Pearsall and Murphy, he was sworn in by County Auditor L.E. Christiansen.

Gallagher’s previous law enforcement experience included 30 years on the Aberdeen police force, including 21 years as chief of police of that city.

Simmons took over his new post in Olympia Tuesday morning.

25 Years Ago

March 9, 1989

Some 18 months of hard work bore fruit Tuesday afternoon about 1 p.m. on the banks of the Wishkah River in Aberdeen. Jean Gardner, wife of Gov. Booth Gardner, christened the 105-foot brig Lady Washington before some 2,000 to 3,000 people who witnessed the scene, one the likes of which hasn’t occurred on Grays Harbor for more than 70 years. The working tug Mary Rose Bruscoe nudged the Lady Washington from her cradle, where she had rested for the past 18 months, and along with a 44-footer from the Westport Coast Guard station, guided the vessel to her new home in the water alongside the old shake plant building where she was constructed. The next step for the shipwrights and everyone connected with the tall ship will be to “step” the masts and several miles of sails, as well as outfit the rest of the ship. Her maiden voyage has been tentatively set for May 8 for a trip to the Puget Sound area. That is expected to be followed up by a September trip to the Columbia River.

10 Years Ago

March 4, 2004

A man Montesano Police said likes the sound falling trees make when he’s high on meth has been arrested in connection with a spate of vandalism in the city forest.

The arrest of a 30-year-old Montesano man last week solves a forest vandalism case dating to November of 2001. In that case, three trees were cut down — a 70-year-old cedar and two 70-year-old Douglas firs.

City Forester Ron Schillinger pegged the log value at nearly $3,000, but the ecological damage was estimated at $105,000. “They just left trees where they fell,” Police Chief Ray Sowers said. “We do have thefts from the forest, but it’s rare somebody would go into the forest and just cut a tree down.”

Overall, 13 damaged or felled trees are believed to be linked to the case, police say, although they don’t believe the suspect is solely responsible for all the damage.

Schillinger’s report notes that some of the trees were within streamside riparian management zones” and legally cannot be harvested or removed.”

The total log mill value of the vandalized trees is from $23 to $2,200 a piece. The total ecological loss attributed to this case is estimated at $226,000.