65 Percent Unemployment in 1934

Weyerhaeuser Company Vail Shay Locomotive, around 1939
Weyerhaeuser Company Vail Shay Locomotive, around 1939

Today, Eatonville residents are having a hard time weathering the recession, but we’ve weathered worse.

Here is an excerpt from the History of Southeastern Pierce County . . .

“In 1933 and 1934 it would have been hard to find, anywhere in the state of Washignton, a town worse off or with poorer prospects than Eatonville, Close to 65 percent of the wage earners and heads of families were without employment. Merchants were running behind thousands of dollars annually. The burning down of the Eatvonille Lumber Company sawmill was a  crushing blow. Houses became empty. Real estate was next to valueless. Blank windows stared out in the main business street.”

But the residents of Eatonville weathered the destruction of their industry and the great depression. They rebuilt the mill and got back on their feet. We come from VERY tough stock.

Photo courtesy of Pat Van Eaton.

Click on images to enlarge.

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