Bob & Lois Catterall

Name: Robert W. Catterall and Lois H. Catterall (Bob & Lois)

Birth Date or Year (optional): 11/5/1927

Your history in Issaquah/How long lived here, etc.:

I came to Issaquah to work in 1958. My maternal grandparents came to Seattle in 1894.  My mother was born here. She and I both attended Interlake Grade School, Alexander Hamilton Jr. High and Lincoln High School.

If you moved to Issaquah, why did you choose it? 

A job opportunity. I was working for a large corporation and they transferred us to Louisville, KY. I hated it. My brother in law Jerry Houghton was working at the Rowley Agency and let us know real estate was booming. Lois and I move back home. I got what I thought would be a temporary job, but I prospered and liked the work. My first day on the job I sold a home on Alder Street, $12,500. The commission was $750 less listing fee and brokerage fee. I got about $340.00 and the seller was Mr. And Mrs. Park Farrington; buyers Jack and JoAnne Barker. I love em to this day.

Family History in Issaquah:

Our history is short but we are making history. Our 3 children live here, our 6 grandchildren live here, our 2 great-grandchildren live here.

 

Education—Coming of Age

What are your memories of Issaquah High School?  Which teachers were influential?

Arrived in Issaquah in 1958 at age 32.

 

What memories do you have of Minnie Schomber, or another favorite teacher?

I knew Minnie when she was retired and she was interesting and interested.  She gave Harriet Fish in depth interviews.  Mory Budzius I have known in retirement and if he taught as well as he retired he must have been dynamite.  Every year for a long time he has put together Salmon Days Parade. He announced varsity basketball. He sells products at the Kingdome and Safeco Field. Everyplace you go, there’s Marty.

 

Local businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?

Out on U.S. 10 (now Gilman Boulevard) there were a strong of little businesses. Don’s Quick Stop was a small independent convenience store. On the corner of Gilman Boulevard and Juniper Street (now the site of Innervisions) was an old abandoned signal service station.  It was operated by Larry Bernard and destroyed by fire.  I rehabilitated this building into my first real estate office – Eastside Realty Inc.  One flaw to the building: it did not have a hoist, instead had a lube pit.  Once the flooring gave way and a desk and salesperson went into the pit. No injuries/no lawsuit/lots of laughs.

 

What barbershop or beauty shop did you frequent?  What do you remember about these places?  What were the popular hairdos when you frequented the beauty shop?  Did you do a lot of socializing at the barber and beauty shops?

Mr. Lewis was my barber sometimes. The time it took to cut your hair depended on how his fishing trip went. The longer his stories, the longer the cut, the shorter your hair. His shop was on Sunset Way, close to Hepler Motors.

 

What is memorable about Lewis Hardware?  What items did you purchase there?

Lewis Hardware was and is my hardware store of choice.  The atmosphere and people fit me fine. I marvel at the volume of inventory and they know where it is.

 

Where did you go to buy your groceries?  Did you go to Tony and Johnny’s, or RR Grocery on East Sunset? Do you remember your favorite clerk?  Were there any items that these grocers specialized in?

Our early shopping was at the Hi-Lo.  We were close to George and Jean Plant til their death. Marj Sweeny had the sandwich bar and then came George and Marj Miller with “Georgie Porgie Goodie Factory,” later to become Puget Sound Baking Company.

 

What restaurants or soda shops did you enjoy going to?  Did you go to Rena’s Café, or XXX Root beer?  What was your favorite food?  Were there memorable waiters or waitresses?

The Shamrock was my all-time favorite. Rena and Mike Shane did a swell job. No one has come close to Rena’s meringue pie. Marie Calendar, eat your heart out. June Ginger and her girls waited tables. Fasano’s on Sunset Way was a good spot.  The Honeysuckle was a fine fountain, but lots of kids.  Harry’s Drive In was lots of fun when Pat Bebee was cooking and Rhonda Nyberg waited tables.

 

Did you go to Boehm’s Candies?  What candies were your favorites?

Did then/do now. My favorite is English toffee. Once I asked Julius how come his peanut brittle was so expensive. Safeway had it for 98 cents and he charged $1.50. I got a long lecture on quality and the value of butter.

 

What saloons or local bars did you and your friends frequent?

I have not drank for 20 years but… when Bill Flintoft was Mayor we would sometimes go to Fasano’s for a  little drink and review the Council meeting we had just attended. Our table usually consisted of George Rowley, Clint Morrow, Bill MacPhearson, E.M. Greenwood and myself.  By the time we got home we had all of the problems solved.

 

What do you remember about Grange Supply?

I have always shopped the Grange. We live on a 5 acre mini farm and keep animals of one kind or another. So chicken food, alfalfa, grain are part of our shopping list. We get our fuel oil there. I don’t think they ever recovered from the strike. About 10 years ago they had fantastic long term employees. No so anymore. The good news is its fun to have a place to buy spring chickens, rabbits and geese.

 

What do you recall about Lawill’s drug store?

Mr. and Mrs. Lawill were quiet refined people who ran a clean and very professional store. They lived in a modest little house on Sunset Way.  They owned a beautiful 20 acre tract of land just north of Providence Point Road.  Sometime in the late 60’s they sold their modest little home to Bev and Bob White and built a very glamorous ultra contemporary home. It made me see a new side to the Lawill’s. They were bold and adventurous people.

 

Local Politics

What important local political issues of Issaquah are memorable?  Do any particular politicians stand out?  Why are they memorable?  What did they accomplish while in office?

Bill Flintoft was a real character. He ran the City with an iron hand with the help of Doris McGinn, City Clerk, and Karen Scott, who took care of water bills, and Nogs Seil, City Engineer. There was a City Council and Planning Commission. There was efficiency in government. How many people are full-time City employees now?

 

What do you recall about Mayor Stella Alexander, the first female mayor of Issaquah (elected in 1933)?  Were there any other local politicians or political activities that drew scandalous attention?

How about the time the fire station caught on fire? Investigation indicated one of the volunteers had a problem with fire.

 

Do you recall Ordinance No. 752 that changed most of the street names in town?  What were your feelings about this change at the time?

I guess the only change that bothered me was changing Mill Street to Sunset Way. I think I was bothered because Harriet Fish told me I should be.

 

Issaquah Round-Up—Salmon Days—Labor Day Celebrations

What do you remember about Labor Day Celebrations or Salmon Days?

I have been a volunteer in Labor Day and Salmon Days since I came to town. The big year was when we put the parade together. The low point was the garbage detail. For a very long time I have announced the parade. Its made me a big shot in my grandchildren’s eyes. Some of the entrants that are missed are Susan Bell and her Arab horse. She was dressed in veils like a princess and her horse with a ton of silver tack; Debbi Galli and her 4-H group; Chick Hollenbeck and his posse.

 

Was there any year that these celebrations were especially memorable to you?

One year there was a carnival in the Front Street Market parking lot. The fellow that ran the Ferris wheel was found to be selling abusive substances to the teenagers. They were not invited back

Another carnival came to town in July and they set up their tent where Heritage Square is now. To publicize the event they had an elephant race down Front Street. The 3 jockeys were Leon Kos, Ernie Smith and Bob Catterall. I swear I won but I’m not sure if that is a unanimous decision.

 

What special activities were there at Labor Day Celebrations, or at Salmon Days?  How has Salmon Days changed over time?

Labor Days had a bit of a rough side to it. The taverns seemed to garner a bit more than their fair share of business. There were some barroom brawls and chances are a fire would break out.

 

Special Occasions

What were some of the other memorable special events and occasions in Issaquah?

Labor Days had a queen. The queen was selected by who sold the most tickets to support a particular candidate. The Princess and her court would ride in an open vehicle in the parade.

Salmon Days involved a new event, the Miss Issaquah Scholarship Pageant. Silvia Werkau started the program and the Junior Chamber of Commerce was the sponsor. Our Queen was Joyce K. Stepaniuk. She went to Vancouver to win the Miss Washington title. She rode in her convertible with the custom plates Miss Wash. She went on to Atlantic City. Another year our first runner up was Missy Spencer and she went on to compete in the Miss SeaFair Pageant and won that title. After the first year the Pageant was sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce. For about 2 years Marg Anderson was Executive Director. After Marg came Bev White and she was the dynamo that put Issaquah pageant on the map. One year Jennifer Wall became Queen and she went on to Miss Washington and placed in the Top 10 at Atlantic City. She was beautiful, smart and talented (piano and voice) and she was severely hearing impaired. At her last pageant she sang her signature song vocally and signing. There was not a dry eye in the house. Another Miss Issaquah that went on to Miss Wash was Sharon Dean. Bev and Bob White are still very active at a state level. I was the Master of Ceremonies for all but about 2 of the pageants.

 

Outdoor Recreation

Did you spend a lot of your free time outside?  What do you remember about fishing, hunting, or hiking in the area?  What was your favorite hiking trail?

Our family lives on 5 acres on the Plateau. When the kids were young we did lots of horse back riding and had miles of trails we could ride from Issaquah to Redmond and never cross a fence and very few roads. We would ride the gas lines and power lines. We could ride east to Preston/Fall City and west to Lake Sammamish.

 

What type of fish did you catch?   How many trout did you catch in the Issaquah Creek and what was the biggest?  Did you fish in the kids fishing derby held in Issaquah?  Were your methods for fishing and hunting any different than they are today?

Lake Alice was our favorite fishing spot. We would blow up our rubber raft and float around using a worm and bobber. We’d come home with a mess of trout.

 

What are your memories of Vasa Park?  What did you do while there?

We didn’t use Vasa Park much but if the public boat launch is too busy we use the one at Vasa Park.  All of our kids and grandkids have enjoyed the Sambica summer camps.

 

Did you go swimming in the local lakes in the summer?  Or ice-skating at the Horrock’s Farm in the winter?

I have known Dave and Nancy Horrocks for many years. Many times Dave took me on walks over the farm and speaking to his childhood there. Nancy would serve cookies and a cup of coffee with real cream from their own cow. They have a fine memory of local history.

 

Logging and Sawmills

Do you remember the Monohon Mill, the Red Hall sawmill by the fish hatchery, the High Point Mill, the Preston Mill, or the Issaquah Lumber Company Mill on Front Street South?

I knew Red Hall and Lloyd Harper and the mill.  As a real estate agent I was involved with the sale of his house on Bush Street. The Harpers bought 3 or 4 homes from me and they had 6 or 7 kids and I served as their agent when they bought homes.  They were diamonds in the rough.

Fritz Pearson had a portable saw mill and he did a lot of custom cutting. He was also a mushroom hunter of distinction. He would bring me sacks of morels. He knew High Point like the palm of his hand and if you took a hike in the woods with Fritz, you had a workout. He was fast!

 

Salmon hatchery

How has the salmon hatchery affected Issaquah?

It was a great asset when built and even more so now. I’m sure it has been a political football.  Whenever the state proposes a budget cut for the State Dept. of Fisheries, the Dept. puts out a press release “Budget Cut Forces Closure of Issaquah Hatchery.”  We all caravan to Olympia to protest, the state increases the budget and the hatchery survives.

 

Farming and Dairy

Were you involved with farming in Issaquah?  What farm did you work on?  What was grown or raised there?

By the time I got here in 1954, it was tough to make a living milking cows. The farmers wanted to sell.  There were three major farms along I-90 (US 10). Elvin and Clara Barlow had 69 acres. The Bergsma family had 90 acres and the Pickering Family had the largest of the farms.  As a real estate person, I put together a group and we purchased the Barlow farm. We subdivided and resold the property. The State Park ended up with the 39 acres on the Lake north of I-90. The only piece ever built on is the Sammamish Club site. George Rowley bought the Bergsma Farm. He also bought the 10 acres from the Wallace Family. The exit 15 clover leaf and its extension south connecting to the Issaquah/Renton Road and the creation of Gilman Boulevard really enhanced his purchase. We all know the saga of the Pickering Farm.

 

Railroad—Transportation

How did the construction of I-90 change life in Issaquah?

It gave us our signature street, Gilman Boulevard.  Prior to I-90, one could drive from Seattle to Spokane and there were 3 stoplights. The first one was intersection of US 10 and Front Street, the second North Bend, and the third Ellensburg.

 

What was your first car?  Did you buy it from Hepler Ford Motors, Stonebridge Chevrolet, or the Kaiser-Frazier dealership?

I bought several cars from Gil Abbot at Stonebridge and one from Jerry Malone. Also bought a Buick from Dale Larson out on US 10.

 

Fraternal Organizations—Local Halls

What are your memories of the fraternal organizations?  Did you belong to the Elks Lodge, or Lions Club, etc?

I was a long-time member of the Issaquah Kiwanis.

 

Entertainment

What movies did you go to see at the Issaquah Theatre (the Old Movie House) to see?  How much did movies cost?  Did you ever go to the back upper corner of the theatre to kiss?

Sometime in the 60’s Lois and I bought the Issaquah Theater.  At the time it was rumored that someone was going to buy the theater and turn it into a warehouse. Seemed like a bad idea to us.  With our purchase came Mr. Taylor.  He was an elderly man with much experience. The theater served as a babysitter. Sometimes these spirited youth threw eggs or tomatoes at the silver screen, so Mr. Taylor would occasionally frisk a patron. His “pat down” often broke an egg or tomato in a pocket.

Upon Mr. Taylor’s retirement Bob Gray and the Pine Lake Presbyterian Church took over.  With all volunteer labor they extensively remodeled the building and cleaned it up.  In the process they found a old hand-painted fire screen all rolled up and very well preserved.  The central theme was Mt. Rainier. The border were ads by various merchants.  This screen was made about 1914 and Lewis Hardware was one of the advertisers. Another advertiser was selling special bottle water with many curative powers, including curing venereal disease. We donated this screen to the Historical Museum. Sometime it might be interesting to hang it at the Community Center.

 

Front Street

In 1964 I was President of the Chamber. My two projects:

1.   Sent a survey to all residents to see what things they saw to make Issaquah a better place. Answer: do something to ease traffic on Front Street. (With the money spent on traffic studies they could have corrected the problem).

2.   We had been a few years without X-mas decorations so we raised money for candy cane and bows with lights.

 

Churches

What church did you attend?  What memories do you have of this church?  Were there any pastors, reverends, or church leaders that stand out in your memory?

Bob Gray and the Pine Lake Presbyterian Church were my favorite group. They were very directed toward community service, one of their projects was the operation of the Theater. It was all volunteer labor and the proceeds went to satisfy needs or less fortunate in our community. After Bob retired because of poor health, they could never find a leader with the same vision.

 

Additional Memories

Do you remember Helen Settem, affectionately known as Cow Helen?

I was for 41 years a real estate man in Issaquah. 6 years I worked for the Rowley Agency and 35 years as the founder, broker and President of Eastside Realty, Inc. It offered me a wonderful life. I worked with a  lot of great people. I formed strong personal relationships with many clients. The business was good to me. I sold the business in 1996. We were located at 160 NW Gilman Boulevard where we have about 2 acres on which I raise sheep. My building is the old Mar Si Motel remodeled into business suites. My wife and I try to return to the community some of the bounty we have received.\

Name:

Robert W. Catterall and Lois H. Catterall (Bob & Lois)

 

Birth Date or Year (optional): 11/5/1927

Your history in Issaquah/How long lived here, etc.:

I came to Issaquah to work in 1958. My maternal grandparents came to Seattle in 1894.  My mother was born here. She and I both attended Interlake Grade School, Alexander Hamilton Jr. High and Lincoln High School.

 

If you moved to Issaquah, why did you choose it?

A job opportunity. I was working for a large corporation and they transferred us to Louisville, KY. I hated it. My brother in law Jerry Houghton was working at the Rowley Agency and let us know real estate was booming. Lois and I move back home. I got what I thought would be a temporary job, but I prospered and liked the work. My first day on the job I sold a home on Alder Street, $12,500. The commission was $750 less listing fee and brokerage fee. I got about $340.00 and the seller was Mr. And Mrs. Park Farrington; buyers Jack and JoAnne Barker. I love em to this day.

 

Family History in Issaquah:

Our history is short but we are making history. Our 3 children live here, our 6 grandchildren live here, our 2 great-grandchildren live here.

 

Education—Coming of Age

What are your memories of Issaquah High School?  Which teachers were influential?

Arrived in Issaquah in 1958 at age 32.

 

What memories do you have of Minnie Schomber, or another favorite teacher?

I knew Minnie when she was retired and she was interesting and interested.  She gave Harriet Fish in depth interviews.  Mory Budzius I have known in retirement and if he taught as well as he retired he must have been dynamite.  Every year for a long time he has put together Salmon Days Parade. He announced varsity basketball. He sells products at the Kingdome and Safeco Field. Everyplace you go, there’s Marty.

 

Local businesses

What local businesses do you remember?  What items did you purchase there?  Who owned the business?  Where was it located?  What do you remember most about it?

Out on U.S. 10 (now Gilman Boulevard) there were a strong of little businesses. Don’s Quick Stop was a small independent convenience store. On the corner of Gilman Boulevard and Juniper Street (now the site of Innervisions) was an old abandoned signal service station.  It was operated by Larry Bernard and destroyed by fire.  I rehabilitated this building into my first real estate office – Eastside Realty Inc.  One flaw to the building: it did not have a hoist, instead had a lube pit.  Once the flooring gave way and a desk and salesperson went into the pit. No injuries/no lawsuit/lots of laughs.

 

What barbershop or beauty shop did you frequent?  What do you remember about these places?  What were the popular hairdos when you frequented the beauty shop?  Did you do a lot of socializing at the barber and beauty shops?

Mr. Lewis was my barber sometimes. The time it took to cut your hair depended on how his fishing trip went. The longer his stories, the longer the cut, the shorter your hair. His shop was on Sunset Way, close to Hepler Motors.

 

What is memorable about Lewis Hardware?  What items did you purchase there?

Lewis Hardware was and is my hardware store of choice.  The atmosphere and people fit me fine. I marvel at the volume of inventory and they know where it is.

 

Where did you go to buy your groceries?  Did you go to Tony and Johnny’s, or RR Grocery on East Sunset? Do you remember your favorite clerk?  Were there any items that these grocers specialized in?

Our early shopping was at the Hi-Lo.  We were close to George and Jean Plant til their death. Marj Sweeny had the sandwich bar and then came George and Marj Miller with “Georgie Porgie Goodie Factory,” later to become Puget Sound Baking Company.

 

What restaurants or soda shops did you enjoy going to?  Did you go to Rena’s Café, or XXX Root beer?  What was your favorite food?  Were there memorable waiters or waitresses?

The Shamrock was my all-time favorite. Rena and Mike Shane did a swell job. No one has come close to Rena’s meringue pie. Marie Calendar, eat your heart out. June Ginger and her girls waited tables. Fasano’s on Sunset Way was a good spot.  The Honeysuckle was a fine fountain, but lots of kids.  Harry’s Drive In was lots of fun when Pat Bebee was cooking and Rhonda Nyberg waited tables.

 

Did you go to Boehm’s Candies?  What candies were your favorites?

Did then/do now. My favorite is English toffee. Once I asked Julius how come his peanut brittle was so expensive. Safeway had it for 98 cents and he charged $1.50. I got a long lecture on quality and the value of butter.

 

What saloons or local bars did you and your friends frequent?

I have not drank for 20 years but… when Bill Flintoft was Mayor we would sometimes go to Fasano’s for a  little drink and review the Council meeting we had just attended. Our table usually consisted of George Rowley, Clint Morrow, Bill MacPhearson, E.M. Greenwood and myself.  By the time we got home we had all of the problems solved.

 

What do you remember about Grange Supply?

I have always shopped the Grange. We live on a 5 acre mini farm and keep animals of one kind or another. So chicken food, alfalfa, grain are part of our shopping list. We get our fuel oil there. I don’t think they ever recovered from the strike. About 10 years ago they had fantastic long term employees. No so anymore. The good news is its fun to have a place to buy spring chickens, rabbits and geese.

 

What do you recall about Lawill’s drug store?

Mr. and Mrs. Lawill were quiet refined people who ran a clean and very professional store. They lived in a modest little house on Sunset Way.  They owned a beautiful 20 acre tract of land just north of Providence Point Road.  Sometime in the late 60’s they sold their modest little home to Bev and Bob White and built a very glamorous ultra contemporary home. It made me see a new side to the Lawill’s. They were bold and adventurous people.

 

Local Politics

What important local political issues of Issaquah are memorable?  Do any particular politicians stand out?  Why are they memorable?  What did they accomplish while in office?

Bill Flintoft was a real character. He ran the City with an iron hand with the help of Doris McGinn, City Clerk, and Karen Scott, who took care of water bills, and Nogs Seil, City Engineer. There was a City Council and Planning Commission. There was efficiency in government. How many people are full-time City employees now?

 

What do you recall about Mayor Stella Alexander, the first female mayor of Issaquah (elected in 1933)?  Were there any other local politicians or political activities that drew scandalous attention?

How about the time the fire station caught on fire? Investigation indicated one of the volunteers had a problem with fire.

 

Do you recall Ordinance No. 752 that changed most of the street names in town?  What were your feelings about this change at the time?

I guess the only change that bothered me was changing Mill Street to Sunset Way. I think I was bothered because Harriet Fish told me I should be.

 

Issaquah Round-Up—Salmon Days—Labor Day Celebrations

What do you remember about Labor Day Celebrations or Salmon Days?

I have been a volunteer in Labor Day and Salmon Days since I came to town. The big year was when we put the parade together. The low point was the garbage detail. For a very long time I have announced the parade. Its made me a big shot in my grandchildren’s eyes. Some of the entrants that are missed are Susan Bell and her Arab horse. She was dressed in veils like a princess and her horse with a ton of silver tack; Debbi Galli and her 4-H group; Chick Hollenbeck and his posse.

 

Was there any year that these celebrations were especially memorable to you?

One year there was a carnival in the Front Street Market parking lot. The fellow that ran the Ferris wheel was found to be selling abusive substances to the teenagers. They were not invited back

 

Another carnival came to town in July and they set up their tent where Heritage Square is now. To publicize the event they had an elephant race down Front Street. The 3 jockeys were Leon Kos, Ernie Smith and Bob Catterall. I swear I won but I’m not sure if that is a unanimous decision.

 

What special activities were there at Labor Day Celebrations, or at Salmon Days?  How has Salmon Days changed over time?

Labor Days had a bit of a rough side to it. The taverns seemed to garner a bit more than their fair share of business. There were some barroom brawls and chances are a fire would break out.

 

Special Occasions

What were some of the other memorable special events and occasions in Issaquah?

Labor Days had a queen. The queen was selected by who sold the most tickets to support a particular candidate. The Princess and her court would ride in an open vehicle in the parade.

 

Salmon Days involved a new even, the Miss Issaquah Scholarship Pageant. Silvia Werkau started the program and the Junior Chamber of Commerce was the sponsor. Our Queen was Joyce K. Stepaniuk. She went to Vancouver to win the Miss Washington title. She rode in her convertible with the custom plates Miss Wash. She went on to Atlantic City. Another year our first runner up was Missy Spencer and she went on to compete in the Miss SeaFair Pageant and won that title. After the first year the Pageant was sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce. For about 2 years Marg Anderson was Executive Director. After Marg came Bev White and she was the dynamo that put Issaquah pageant on the map. One year Jennifer Wall became Queen and she went on to Miss Washington and placed in the Top 10 at Atlantic City. She was beautiful, smart and talented (piano and voice) and she was severely hearing impaired. At her last pageant she sang her signature song vocally and signing. There was not a dry eye in the house. Another Miss Issaquah that went on to Miss Wash was Sharon Dean. Bev and Bob White are still very active at a state level. I was the Master of Ceremonies for all but about 2 of the pageants.

 

Outdoor Recreation

Did you spend a lot of your free time outside?  What do you remember about fishing, hunting, or hiking in the area?  What was your favorite hiking trail?

Our family lives on 5 acres on the Plateau. When the kids were young we did lots of horse back riding and had miles of trails we could ride from Issaquah to Redmond and never cross a fence and very few roads. We would ride the gas lines and power lines. We could ride east to Preston/Fall City and west to Lake Sammamish.

 

What type of fish did you catch?   How many trout did you catch in the Issaquah Creek and what was the biggest?  Did you fish in the kids fishing derby held in Issaquah?  Were your methods for fishing and hunting any different than they are today?

Lake Alice was our favorite fishing spot. We would blow up our rubber raft and float around using a worm and bobber. We’d come home with a mess of trout.

 

What are your memories of Vasa Park?  What did you do while there?

We didn’t use Vasa Park much but if the public boat launch is too busy we use the one at Vasa Park.  All of our kids and grandkids have enjoyed the Sambica summer camps.

 

Did you go swimming in the local lakes in the summer?  Or ice-skating at the Horrock’s Farm in the winter?

I have known Dave and Nancy Horrocks for many years. Many times Dave took me on walks over the farm and speaking to his childhood there. Nancy would serve cookies and a cup of coffee with real cream from their own cow. They have a fine memory of local history.

 

Logging and Sawmills

Do you remember the Monohon Mill, the Red Hall sawmill by the fish hatchery, the High Point Mill, the Preston Mill, or the Issaquah Lumber Company Mill on Front Street South?

I knew Red Hall and Lloyd Harper and the mill.  As a real estate agent I was involved with the sale of his house on Bush Street. The Harpers bought 3 or 4 homes from me and they had 6 or 7 kids and I served as their agent when they bought homes.  They were diamonds in the rough.

 

Fritz Pearson had a portable saw mill and he did a lot of custom cutting. He was also a mushroom hunter of distinction. He would bring me sacks of morels. He knew High Point like the palm of his hand and if you took a hike in the woods with Fritz, you had a workout. He was fast!

 

Salmon hatchery

How has the salmon hatchery affected Issaquah?

It was a great asset when built and even more so now. I’m sure it has been a political football.  Whenever the state proposes a budget cut for the State Dept. of Fisheries, the Dept. puts out a press release “Budget Cut Forces Closure of Issaquah Hatchery.”  We all caravan to Olympia to protest, the state increases the budget and the hatchery survives.

 

Farming and Dairy

Were you involved with farming in Issaquah?  What farm did you work on?  What was grown or raised there?

By the time I got here in 1954, it was tough to make a living milking cows. The farmers wanted to sell.  There were three major farms along I-90 (US 10). Elvin and Clara Barlow had 69 acres. The Bergsma family had 90 acres and the Pickering Family had the largest of the farms.  As a real estate person, I put together a group and we purchased the Barlow farm. We subdivided and resold the property. The State Park ended up with the 39 acres on the Lake north of I-90. The only piece ever built on is the Sammamish Club site. George Rowley bought the Bergsma Farm. He also bought the 10 acres from the Wallace Family. The exit 15 clover leaf and its extension south connecting to the Issaquah/Renton Road and the creation of Gilman Boulevard really enhanced his purchase. We all know the saga of the Pickering Farm.

 

Railroad—Transportation

How did the construction of I-90 change life in Issaquah?

It gave us our signature street, Gilman Boulevard.  Prior to I-90, one could drive from Seattle to Spokane and there were 3 stoplights. The first one was intersection of US 10 and Front Street, the second North Bend, and the third Ellensburg.

 

What was your first car?  Did you buy it from Hepler Ford Motors, Stonebridge Chevrolet, or the Kaiser-Frazier dealership?

I bought several cars from Gil Abbot at Stonebridge and one from Jerry Malone. Also bought a Buick from Dale Larson out on US 10.

 

Fraternal Organizations—Local Halls

What are your memories of the fraternal organizations?  Did you belong to the Elks Lodge, or Lions Club, etc?

I was a long-time member of the Issaquah Kiwanis.

 

Entertainment

What movies did you go to see at the Issaquah Theatre (the Old Movie House) to see?  How much did movies cost?  Did you ever go to the back upper corner of the theatre to kiss?

Sometime in the 60’s Lois and I bought the Issaquah Theater.  At the time it was rumored that someone was going to buy the theater and turn it into a warehouse. Seemed like a bad idea to us.  With our purchase came Mr. Taylor.  He was an elderly man with much experience. The theater served as a babysitter. Sometimes these spirited youth threw eggs or tomatoes at the silver screen, so Mr. Taylor would occasionally frisk a patron. His “pat down” often broke an egg or tomato in a pocket.

 

Upon Mr. Taylor’s retirement Bob Gray and the Pine Lake Presbyterian Church took over.  With all volunteer labor they extensively remodeled the building and cleaned it up.  In the process they found a old hand-painted fire screen all rolled up and very well preserved.  The central theme was Mt. Rainier. The border were ads by various merchants.  This screen was made about 1914 and Lewis Hardware was one of the advertisers. Another advertiser was selling special bottle water with many curative powers, including curing venereal disease. We donated this screen to the Historical Museum. Sometime it might be interesting to hang it at the Community Center.

 

Front Street

In 1964 I was President of the Chamber. My two projects:

 

1.   Sent a survey to all residents to see what things they saw to make Issaquah a better place. Answer: do something to ease traffic on Front Street. (With the money spent on traffic studies they could have corrected the problem).

 

2.   We had been a few years without X-mas decorations so we raised money for candy cane and bows with lights.

 

Churches

What church did you attend?  What memories do you have of this church?  Were there any pastors, reverends, or church leaders that stand out in your memory?

Bob Gray and the Pine Lake Presbyterian Church were my favorite group. They were very directed toward community service, one of their projects was the operation of the Theater. It was all volunteer labor and the proceeds went to satisfy needs or less fortunate in our community. After Bob retired because of poor health, they could never find a leader with the same vision.

 

Additional Memories

Do you remember Helen Settem, affectionately known as Cow Helen?

 

I was for 41 years a real estate man in Issaquah. 6 years I worked for the Rowley Agency and 35 years as the founder, broker and President of Eastside Realty, Inc. It offered me a wonderful life. I worked with a  lot of great people. I formed strong personal relationships with many clients. The business was good to me. I sold the business in 1996. We were located at 160 NW Gilman Boulevard where we have about 2 acres on which I raise sheep. My building is the old Mar Si Motel remodeled into business suites. My wife and I try to return to the community some of the bounty we have received.

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