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Loggerodeo 3: 14 photos from Fourth of July celebrations
13 from Sedro-Woolley, 1 from Burlington

(Masquerade 1906)
      In March 1906, society matron Julia Bingham — wife of banker Charlie, threw one of the most famous parties of early Sedro-Woolley. Her masquerade ball attached all the "finer people" of town, minus the shingle weavers of course, and it was such fun that they wore their costumes again for this photo on the 4th of July. In a special issue of the Sedro-Woolley Courier-Times dated June 29, 1939, we found this caption that lists the "court" in the photo: (l. to r.) Homer Soules (son of the man who platted Burlington), Ina Wells, George Hammer (founder of Oliver Hammer Clothes Shop), Clyde Murray, Minerva Holbrook, Queen Gertrude Miller, Prime Minister Howard Seabury (then the city attorney from 1901-09, son of a family who homesteaded in Skiyou), Charles Bingham (son of the Binghams), Nellie Parker, W.W. Conner and Uqinna Hurley. Unfortunately the three members of royalty from the original party did not pose: C.E. Bingham as Cardinal Richilieu, Julia Reno Bingham as Marie de Medici and her sister Jesse Reno Odlin as Theodora Burr.

(Burlington 1910)
      Although Sedro-Woolley 4th of July parades have always been known as the grandest, other nearby towns held similar parades in the early years of the twentieth century. Georgia Taylor supplied this photo of the 1910 Burlington 4th of July parade for the Argus September 2002 special magazine that celebrated the town's celebration of its centennial. We think this photo was taken on the western end of Fairhaven, looking east from about where the Thrifty Foods store stands in 2003. At that time, the west end of the town was still residential with dirt and gravel streets. The automobile would not proliferate for another few years so the main transportation was still by railroad. We hope readers will share copies or scans of Fourth of July photos in all Skagit County cities.

Floats in the old 4th of July parades. Click on these thumbnails for full-sized photos
(Batey Vinegar float)
(Ropes Transfer)
(Hammer-Green car)
Far left: David Batey, one of the four British bachelors who first settled the future Sedro acreage, retired from mill work after a long illness and established a vinegar works on his old homestead, centered on what later became the east end of the Goodyear-Nelson mill. This photo of his float in the 1905 parade was taken from the Schneider building, which is now the bowling alley, looking east across the 600 block of Metcalf. In the background at the left you see the angular building that was on the northeast side of the old Fairhaven & Southern railroad tracks. To the right is W.B. Pigg's confectionery (on the site of today's Esteban restaurant), then a wooden building that stands where the Schooner tavern is today.
Center: Teamster Jack Palmateer gets his horse team ready for the 1923 grand parade at the staging area in front of Ropes Transfer at the northeast corner of Murdock and Ferry streets, where Skagit State Bank stands in 2003. Bill Ropes and Charlie White originally bought this livery barn from Frank Hoehn in 1916 after the old settler retired to his Township street strawberry farm. Hoehn built the livery business there after his original site was leveled in the great July 1911 that swept through old Woolley. The float trumpets their most profitable product, Black Diamond coal briquets. At the far right you can see the shingle hanging out for veterinarian G.A. Jones, who moved to town in 1912 and boarded two blocks east on Ferry street with milliner Anna Herron for the first three years before marrying Laura Thompson in June 1915.
Right: Sue Swetman of Clear Lake is a descendant of the Green and Parker families who made their mark there with shingle and grocery businesses. This photo of a decorated car for a 4th of July parade is from her family's scrapbook is not captioned. We have two guesses. 1. The woman could be Jody Green, wife of George Green, who was the founder of the Union Mercantile store in downtown Woolley in 1903. 2. The woman could be Isabel Green Hammer, Jody's daughter, who married Emerson Hammer back in their hometown of Lincoln, Kansas, in 1889. They moved here by train and stagecoach on their honeymoon in March that year and Hammer clerked for Mortimer Cook at his Cook's Sterling store before Hammer opened his own store in 1891 in Burlington. If that is Isabel, the soldier driving would be her son George in his WW1 uniform and his sister Mary would be in the back seat. So that would date the photo in 1918.

The famous 4th of July parade arches. Click on these thumbnail photos to see the full-sized photos.
(Metcalf north arch)
(State street east arch)
Far left. The very early Sedro-Woolley 4th of July parades were conducted between two wooden arches at the north and east ends of the young city. The photo at the far left is of the northern arch, which was erected annual on the south side of the Great Northern railroad tracks in the 600 block of Metcalf. We believe that this photo, looking south, was taken in 1911. At the left you can see W.B. Pigg's confectionery and behind it is the new Wixson Hotel, erected the year before to replace the old Osterman House, which burned in September 1909.
Center: The middle photo is of the eastern arch, which straddled State street about where Hal's Drive-In stands in 2003. In this photo we are looking east and we believe it was taken in 1910, not long after the Episcopal church in the background was constructed. Apparently the parade started from east to west that year. Fritsch Brothers Hardware, located at the northwest corner of Metcalf and Woodworth streets, decorated an elaborate float every year. At the far left is the lot at the northeast corner of Murdock and State streets, which was still vacant then. Del Hayes, who then owned the Plantio cigar factory downtown, built a service station on that lot in 1927. The pathway leads to druggist A.E. Holland's house on the east side of Murdock street.

(Bergman float)
      Theodore Bergman owned the Star Grocery, which replaced the Red Front store at the northeast corner of Metcalf and Woodworth streets in a new building after the disastrous July 1911 Woolley fire. His store was one of the most progressive groceries in the state, emphasizing new sanitary displays — the open pickle barrels were replaced — and nursing rooms for mothers with newborns. The world headquarters for Small Planet Foods-Cascadian Farm occupies the building today. Bergman went all out with decorated cars in the 4th of July parades as you can see above in an undated photo. His father, Henry Bergman moved here from Sweden via Chicago in June 1892 and his mother, Ella followed with Theodore and six siblings in August. She traveled across the Atlantic by steamship and then took a train across Canada to reach here, a heroic journey considering that she knew no English and some of the children were babies.

Carnival committees and the Territorial daughters. Click on these thumbnails for full-sized photos.
Sedro-Woolley has been famous from the turn of the 20th century for its 4th of July carnival, which ramped up to full gear under the leadership of future-mayor Percy "Puss" Stendal in 1920 and continues as a focal point of the Loggerodeo today.

(Carnival committee 1914)
(Carnival committee 1907)
(Territorial Daughters covered wagon)
Far left: The carnival committee of 1914 poses with competitors from the first full-fledged rodeo of the 4th of July that year. Behind them is the home of John Anderson — founder of Sedro-Woolley Iron Works, which still stands at the southeast corner of Puget and Ferry streets. The same 1939 Courier-Times referred to above supplied this caption with some of the names of the committee members in the white "ice cream" suits (from l. to r.): W.J. Thompson (the mayor — he died five weeks later in an auto wreck), Horace Condy (jeweler), Rev. Honor L. Wilhelm (the only one in the black suit), Paul Rhodius (druggist, the one time in history that he did not wear his black derby hat), H.H. Shrewsbury (mill and hardware owner), C.E. Bingham, Harry Devin (realtor), B.D. Vanderveer (saloon owner and Klondike miner), W.H. Curry (furniture store), and George Ragsdale (Skagit County Times editor.
Center: This photo is fondly known as the "Ice Cream Suit" committee. In the early days of the twentieth century, men wore these white-on-white suits from Memorial Day to Labor Day for special occasions. A special edition of the Courier-Times from September 1953 identifies the members of the 1907 4th of July carnival committee as (l. to r.): front row, Frank Herron (Grand Rapids Furniture); Homer Shrewsbury, genl chairman; Dave Donnelly (butcher and later postmaster); back row, Horace Condy; Bill Thompson (originally a cigar maker, he changed his name back to the original Scandinavian spelling of Thomsen and was bookkeeper of the Union Mercantile store, then city clerk until he retired in 1953), parade marshal; A. C. Campbell (baker); Paul Rhodius; George Ragsdale.
Right: The Territorial Daughters of Washington, Chapter 1, which formed in Sedro-Woolley in 1936, had this covered wagon restored in 1939 so they could ride in it on July 4 to celebrate the Golden Anniversary of Washington statehood and of the year that the railroad came to Sedro. Pioneer William Dunlop, one of the original four British bachelors, poses at the right.

Parades on Metcalf street. Click on these thumbnails for full-sized photos.
(4th of July parade Metcalf street)
(4th of July parade Metcalf street-1911)
(4th of July parade Metcalf street-1910)
Far left: Pioneer attorney Howard Seabury moved with his family to Skiyou just before the turn of the century and was named Sedro-Woolley city attorney in 1901, serving for eight years. He came here along with Eugene Foster from Plainview, Nebraska. They were both hired by Sedro-Woolley butcher and Republican leader David Donnelly to front as owners of the Skagit County Courier, which Donnelly secretly bankrolled to further his political views.
Seabury shared this early photo of a 4th of July parade, looking north on Metcalf, with the
Courier-Times for publisher Frank Evans's special 1939 history issue. The date of the photo has been hotly debated. Some have dated it in 1905 and other Seabury said that it was taken in 1901. But our detective work leads to a year in between. Note the details like the new-fangled electric bulb hanging to the right. Wilfred R. Morgan brought the first electric poles for his new power company in 1902. As you can see on the right, one merchant is still promoting a fire sale, at least two years after one of the periodic fires that swept through Woolley's original wooden buildings. One of the three cigar manufacturers in town advertises on the left. And in the mid-right, on the southeast corner of Metcalf and Woodworth streets, we see a stationery store that was owned by the sons of town founder P.A. Woolley. The lots in the foreground on both sides of Metcalf are still vacant because they were on the Kelley Strip, a disputed piece of land that was not opened up to construction until 1912..
Center: This photo is one of the last views of Metcalf street, looking north in 1911, just a couple of weeks before the raging fire that leveled most of downtown Woolley. This center photo was taken from the intersection of Metcalf and Ferry. The float drawing the queen and her court is moving past the building on the right that housed Fritsch Carpets and the Red Front general store until the fire destroyed it. At the north end of that 700 block of Metcalf, you can see in the center of the photo the huge three-story, wooden Bingham-Holland building that housed the Donnelly butcher business and Dale Tresner's harness works until the fire.
Right: This photo was taken in an early year than the one to the left, maybe 1909. Taken by a photographer in the middle of the 800 block of Metcalf, looking north, it shows the famous parade arch at the north end of the street, the Red Front store to the right and P.A. Woolley's orchard, which then covered most of the northeast end of the 800 block. His mansion was built to the east in about 1901, now the site of Countryside Chevrolet..

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