Johnny Larson (1963)

Johnny Larson 1963
Johnny Larson 1963

Martin Burwash writes this about his photos of Johnny Larson . . . 

Ever wonder what a real northwest pioneer actually looked like? Well here you go. This is Johnny Larson. He and my Grandpa [Matt] Kjelstad were boyhood friends and neighbors in Ohop Valley, southeast of Tacoma. Together with the other pioneering people in the valley, they straightened the creek, cleared the trees, drained the ground and turned a swamp into farmland.

Like many, they had day jobs and farmed as well. My grandpa was a carpenter, Johnny was a logger. As near as I can tell, I took this photo in 1963 or 64. Johnny was in his mid-sixties, terribly hard of hearing and had a hunched backed. Within a couple of years he would be dead, killed in a logging accident.

[The home is still standing today in Ohop Valley.)

Photo courtesy of Martin Burwash.

Click on image to enlarge.

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