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Pages of the Past

120 Years Ago

Aug. 3, 1894

A very destructive forest fire is raging about a mile and a half east of Porter; it has destroyed considerable shingle timber and threatens to destroy Butler’s mill.

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The Ocosta Pioneer says that “one of the Chinamen on board the McArthur was drowned Monday while bathing in the bay. The sailors on the ship saw him go down in about eight feet of water and at once went to the rescue, but the unfortunate celestial never came to the surface, and all efforts to find the body proved unavailing.”

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A gentleman coming down the Chehalis a few days since saw a flock of 21 Japanese pheasants. These beautiful birds were introduced into Oregon a few years ago, and it is presumed those in this vicinity have gradually worked over this far. A few specimens have been seen in the county before. It is unlawful to kill those birds, and the Montesano Gun Club will prosecute any one violating the law.

100 Years Ago

July 31, 1914

Ted E. Faulk, the 19-year-old lad who tampered with the air brakes on the Moclips picnic excursion train last week and which action resulted in an accident in which W.C. Anderson, a carpenter of Aberdeen was killed, has been formally charged by the prosecuting attorney and will have a hearing next week in Superior Court. The boy confessed his action and asked to be arrested. On account of his procedure in the matter and his general good character, it is likely that he will be dealt with very leniently.

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The circular saw road signs will soon be in place of the Olympic Highway, the main road east and west through this county. Engineer Shorey has secured the old saws from the mill companies and has the work of painting the signs well along. The signs will bear the name of the nearest towns each way, with the distance to each particular place. On the cross roads and lesser highways, cross-cut saws will be used as signs.

75 Years Ago

Aug. 3, 1939

A silent and unflinching Paul Buttry for the second time heard himself doomed to death by hanging as he stood before Superior Judge William E. Campbell here Monday afternoon.

Having lost his appeal to the Supreme Court from his conviction on charges of murdering Hugh Warren, Buttry now is scheduled to be hanged Sept. 15.

According to the court’s order, he will be held in solitary confinement in the state penitentiary at Walla Walla until that date.

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A tremendous rush of peas, ripened rapidly by the warm sun has taxed the Blue Mountain cannery here nearly to capacity.

The big crew of men and women have been working at top speed, while in the field, additional viners have been installed to take care of the rush without delaying the peas on their swift journey from vine to can.

In the last few days, five more viners have been set to work. This brings the total number of viners up to 33, compared to 22 last year.

Thousands of cases have been canned daily, and the big warehouse is rapidly filling.

50 Years Ago

July 30, 1964

A townwide welcome is being extended this week by the Montesano business community to the city’s newest store, Harbor Furniture, in the Montesano Shopping Center.

The new furniture center is holding its grand opening this Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Merchandise prizes totalling $100 in value will be given away and visitors will enjoy free doughnuts and coffee.

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Wayne Bragg, Montesano Boy Scout who has been attending the national Jamboree at Valley Forge, is the first scout in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Alaska and Montana to earn an atomic energy merit badge.

25 Years Ago

Aug. 3, 1989

County commisssioners appointed Paul Youmans this week to finish out the remaining months of Democrat Phyllis Piercy’s term as county auditor. The three-term auditor announced her retirement early last month.

Youmans will serve in the spot until November, when a new auditor will be elected. The race is shaping up to be a lively one, with three people, including Youmans, already declared as candidates. The others are Barbara Lester, who currently works in the Treasurer’s Office, and Vern Spatz, who is CPA for the city of Aberdeen.

10 Years Ago

July 29, 2004

The Montesano City Council slogged through a loaded agenda Tuesday as a crowd of nearly 100 people grimly looked on.

The marathon meeting didn’t wind down until nearly 11 p.m. with most of the crowd hanging in until the bitter end to see which way the council would vote on issues like doing away with the parks and recreation program, rewriting the fire chief’s job description, outsourcing the police department and eliminating the labor consultant.

Most came to plead for the parks program. Backed by resounding applause, a dozen speakers urged the council not to eliminate parks and recreation from the budget. They also praised the police department and city forester — the two other departments on tenterhooks over what the council might do with jobs and services.

A motion on the table Tuesday would have cut parks and recreation coordinator Mike Bruner’s job from the budget and eliminated the dozens of programs he organizes or helps coordinate.

In the end, what was once a unanimous recommendation from the council’s Pubic Safety Committee was defeated on a voice vote, with Councilman Bud Owen the only audible vote still in favor of eliminating Bruner and the parks program.