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A look at Eatonville, 1957

Eatonville Lumber Co. ca 1957
Eatonville Lumber Co. — 1950s (photo courtesy Pat VanEaton)

These two pictures were taken in the 1950s.

The first is of the Eatonville Lumber company. It closed February 1954. On December 2, 1953, the following statement was published:

“Announcement was made today by G.E. Karlin, representing ownership of the Eatonville Lumber Company, that the concern had been sold by the present owners to a new corporation known as Eatonville Lumber Company, Inc., the president of, which is D. (Doug) A. Gonyea,”

In a personal interview Mr. Karlin stated:  “It had been generally known for a long time that the moment would inevitably arrive when the timber owned by and available to the Eatonville mill would be exhausted and the plant would of necessity shut down. We have for several years past operated as best we could with a constantly diminishing supply of timber and have augmented that supply through every possible available source.

In other words, we have simply run the string out, operating as long as we could carry on, and the time has now arrived when we feel this is no longer possible.  We have therefore effected the sale reported above and Mr. Gonyea and his new company will carry on from here.

The second picture was taken, looking down Center Street.

Center Street, ca 1957
Center Street, ca 1957 (photo courtesy Pat VanEaton)

TC Van Eaton Home — built 1898

TC Van Eaton home & family
TC Van Eaton home & family. Pictured are Left to Right: Kate Dutton, Nellie Van Eaton, Jennie Miller, Frank, Susie and John Van Eaton. (Photo courtesy Pat VanEaton)

Pictured is the home built by T.C. Van Eaton in 1898, located on Rainier Street.

It was built after there were sawmills nearby for lumber and was the height of architecture in its day and the finest home for miles around.

It had eight room. Most of the cedar and scroll were were hand-planed by Lou Osborne. Mr. Van Eaton also freighted some boards, such as flooring, from Tacoma,

The dimension lumber came from Andrean’s mill at Muck Creek, and the foundation timbers from the Goe and Tomlin mill on the Little Mashell.

At the time it was the highest building in town and situated on a knoll. Originally there was a 110-foot well near the back door dug by Nate Williams with the assistance of Silas Barr, an Indian from Indian Henry’s village.

The small house next to is, toward Center Street, was built by Mr. Van Eaton for his mother, Mrs. Caroline Van Eaton, who lived there for five years in the early 1900s. (History of  Southeastern Pierce County)

During the 2009 Eatonville Centennial there was a tour a tea at the home.  You can read more about the home today in Dixie and Bob Walter’s article. Just click  HERE.

Pictured are Left to Right: Kate Dutton, Nellie Van Eaton, Jennie Miller, Frank, Susie and John Van Eaton.

Bomber Goes Missing in 1946

Ohop Valley, Eatonville
Postcard says 25 Marine fliers were lost December, 1946

March, 2011 this postcard appeared on Ebay.com. I purchased in part because I live in Ohop Valley, but also because of the message on top: “25 Marine fliers lost here December 1946. Bodies found summer of 1947.”

After a little research at the Eatonville Library, I found an article about the missing bomber and 32 passengers. (See below.) It didn’t go down in Ohop Valley, but the Rimrocks. And although I went through every pages of the 1947 Dispatches, I never did find anything about recovered bodies.

If you have any information, please post.

Article on Missing Bomber, 1946
Article on Missing Bomber, 1946

 

Building the Swanson Airport – 1952

Swanson Airfield construction
Loggers at work building the airport in 1952

Roy Swanson provided these pictures of the local loggers clearing the land and building the Swanson airport. Roy believes the pictures were originally Bud Blancher’s.

(Just lick on the image to enlarge.)

All the men volunteered their machines and time.  Even more astounding, the 1,850 runway took them just a little over two weeks to build.

Logging in the 40s

Logging moves from Steam to diesel
Loggers in the 40s with high tech equipment

These loggers thought they were high tech back in the 40s. This photo shows the shift from steam to diesel power in in the woods. Pat Van Eaton says this eliminated the need for water and the fire hazard of burning wood to fire the steam boiler.

Photo was taken about 1942 near National, WA. Courtesy Donna Rahier
The man second to the right is Ed Raysbrook.

Mashell Avenue ca. 1910

Eatonville, WA, Mashell Ave, ca 1910
Mashell Ave., Eatonville, WA ca 1910

This great photo of Mashell Ave. taken in about 1910 comes from the Eatonville Facebook page.  (Click on image for larger viewing.)

David Beane says he found this pictures on Ebay. He bid on it but lost.  Someone out there has a incredible picture of the town’s yearly years.

The road was still dirt, and many of the buildings are gone today, but the Methodist Church (the left) still stands, along with a few others.

If you know anything more about this image, please feel free to comment.

Loggers Build Airport in 1952

1952: Loggers who put in Eatonville's Swanson Airfield

In February, 1952, these logger  got together and built the Swanson Field. Using a “loggers eye” these guys cleared land and completed in the project in a little over 2 weeks.

The project was entirely volunteer. The men donated not just their time, but their machines as well.

Airport Crew
Back Row, L to R:
Preston Parrish, Seg Osterdahl, Ralph Weigard, John Swanson, Earnie Christian, Fritz Guske

Front Row, L to R: Earnie Osterdahl, Norm Olden, Roy Block, Wood Wilson, Chuck Medlock

Others who were involved in the construction: Roy Treadwell and Clarance Gemmel ran cats; Guske, Swanson and Don Murphy owned the cats; John Van Eaton and Cecil Jordon supplied the fuel.

 

VanCleve Motors

George Van Cleve Jr. (Lad), Jim Van Cleve, and George Van Cleve Sr. (Pappy)

This photo of Ladd, Jim and George Van Cleve was taken around 1940. These three guys were the heart and soul of Van Cleve Motors in Eatonville and Morton for decades.

We’re posting this picture because early March, 2011 the VanCleve motors building in Eatonville was knocked down. Even though the structure had gotten old, we’ll always remember these guys in their prime.

Van Cleve, Ford Building
Van Cleve - Ford Building, courtesy of Pat Van Eaton

For the Rest of the Story, just click here.

Photo courtesy of the Van Cleve family.

Click on images to enlarge.

Eatonville Theatre 1920

Eatonville Theater 1920
Left: Nell Van Eaton, Right Annie Miller

The first Eatonville theatre was built in 1915 on Mashell Avenue by Frank Van Eaton in 1915. Electricity hadn’t made it’s way to town yet. so a 2-cylinder kerosene generator powered the silent movies.

A piano supplied the score, and the same pianist sometimes sold popcorn. Early pianists included Mrs. A.W. Fairburn, Miss Ethel Stinnette, Mrs. Fix and Fay Williams Duke.

At the time this picture was taken in 1920, Douglas Fairbanks would have been one of big screen starts.

Information drawn from: Timber Town and Later, by Edith Erickson