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Skagit River Journal

of History & Folklore
Subscribers Edition
The most in-depth, comprehensive site about the Skagit

Covers from British Columbia to Puget Sound. Counties covered: Skagit, Whatcom, Island, San Juan, Snohomish & BC. An evolving history dedicated to committing random acts of historical kindness
Noel V. Bourasaw, editor (bullet) 810 Central Ave., Sedro-Woolley, Washington, 98284
Home of the Tarheel Stomp (bullet) Mortimer Cook slept here & named the town Bug

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Town of Bessemer, Blanket Bill Jarman,
Elliott family and early Birdsview,
including the solved mystery of Bill's granddaughter

By Noel V. Bourasaw, Skagit River Journal, ©2002

Click on this thumbnail to see the full size photo.
Bessemer Elliott Hotel
(Elliott Hotel)
      The detail of this circa-1890 Elliott's Bessemer Hotel is stunning. First, it was a very substantial structure in the tiny town that formed on the north shore of the Skagit River, east of Lyman and Hamilton, and opposite Birdsey Minkler's original sawmill on the south shore. The von Pressentin family owned a gravity-powered ferry that transported goods, people, horses and wagons across the river. Otto Pressentin's caption notes on the photo: [from left to right] Mr. and Mrs. James and Alice [Jarman] Elliott (holding their daughter, [Mabel], granddaughter of Bill Jarman); William Snover and wife, later owners of Marblemount Hotel; George Gallagher; Ted the cook (in white apron); Charles Pressentin (in black hat in the doorway, father of Otto); two men leaning against wall unknown. On wagon, l. to r.: Elmer Wilson, son of Tom Wilson, Grandy creek settler; [writing is blurred here, either Walter Burleigh, who possibly platted the area around Bessemer, or Charles Hager, who is in dark shirt, homesteaded up Finney creek]; Albert Zabel (white shirt, stage owner and driver); Tom Wilson, Grandy Lake settler.
      Other Pressentin notes on photo. Note 1: James Elliott Bessemer Hotel, later called the Birdsview Hotel, dated in the "early '90s." [Had to be about 1892 because of the Elliott baby, Mabel, who was born the year before.] Note 2: Bessemer Hotel in Birdsview was named for the new townsite about a little north and east of earlier Birdsview, but the townsite never prospered, so the hotel was later renamed Birdsview. Note 3: New townsite platted a mile northeast of Birdsview, was supposed to overrun and absorb Birdsview, but the reverse occurred and Bessemer was overrun and absorbed by Birdsview. From the John Wicker collection, apparently originally from the Otto Pressentin collection.

      William R. "Blanket Bill" Jarman indirectly influenced the future of Birdsview, the most important of the early upriver Skagit towns, when his daughter married a Canadian and they built a hotel at a boomtown nearby named Bessemer that soon became a ghost town. This story has evolved considerably since the first draft of 2002, when we depended largely on Percival R. Jeffcott's 1958 book, Blanket Bill Jarman. Since then we have conducted considerable research of our own and we have also found descendants as sources.
      About ten years ago, early on in our research project, the late John Wicker gave us the two photos below and asked us to help find the background on them. They were taken in the 1890s in a town named Bessemer on the upper Skagit River, which never came to fruition and has pretty well vanished from history. It has taken much longer than we thought, but we have finally nailed down the location of the buildings in the photos and the people in them. The photos show the only known buildings in the town: the Bessemer Hotel and F.E. Wyman's general store. Barbara Halliday, a descendant of Birdsview pioneer August Kemmerich, sent us a plat map that helped us understand the town of Bessemer. And our subsequent research on over the last decade has revealed some of the answers.
      The Jarman information was especially important because we discovered that his daughter, Alice, was the wife of the Bessemer Hotel owner, James Elliott. Percival R. Jeffcott explained in his Jarman book that Alice Jarman originally married a Sehome miner named Thomas Edge, "but due to his fondness for the cup that inebriates, she left him and married James Elliott, who was one of the first settlers at Birdsview on the upper Skagit River." We learned from Halliday's map that Harrison Clothier, co-founder of Mount Vernon, platted the town of Bessemer in 1890, along with his partners, which included the powerful Mount Vernon attorney E.C. Million.
      They platted the town after Nelson Bennett and company opened the Cokedale coal mines downriver and Charles X. Larrabee and James J. Hill invested in coking ovens there. Hopes arose again about mining the resources of Coal and Iron mountains across the river, where Amasa Peg-Leg Everett lost his leg while discovering coal in 1874. Elliott appears to have built his impressive two-story hotel in Bessemer in 1890. The proposed town was in section 14, Township 35 North, Range 7 East. Barbara Halliday supplied copies of two deeds that were obtained by her relatives, Marlin and Jessie Miller of Sedro-Woolley. The first deed shows that James Elliott sold lots four and five in block 22 of Bessemer to August Kemmerich for $100 on August 16, 1890. The second deed shows that in 1923, Kemmerich quit-claim the same lots for $40 to George W. Hoy.
      The 1900 Federal Census shows that the Elliott couple married in 1888 but we do not know when they moved to Skagit County. The Elliotts and Alice's son by her prior marriage, Billy Edge, ran the hotel and saloon near the steamboat landing. Billy attended school in Birdsview with future famous forest ranger Tom Thompson — a key Jeffcott source, but Ira B. Savage told Jeffcott that Billy then forged a check and served time at Walla Walla. Thompson recalled to Jeffcott that, after that bad start, Billy went on to be a captain on sternwheelers running up the Skagit River. Jarman's sons, Johnnie and Jimmie, camped nearby with Indians on the Riverbank not far from Elliott's saloon. Jarman's deceased wife, Alice, was the mother of all three of the children. The hotel was not very prosperous, especially when the nationwide Depression set in during the early 1890s, but they eked out a living. Their only child, a daughter named Mabel, was born at Bessemer in 1891, as the economy began turning bad, leading up to the nationwide Depression that dried up capital in the new state of Washington. Jeffcott tracked her down and discovered that she was married to a prominent man in a distant state, but she asked him to keep her name confidential. Subsequently we have discovered her identity and we will explain later in the story.
      The Federal Census also revealed a fact that neither Jarman nor any other historian has addressed. The next door neighbor of the Elliotts was the family of Archie Barr, whose wife was one of Jarman's subsequent wives after Alice. As we mentioned in our main biography of Jarman, Emily Plaster Jarman Barr was the daughter of one of the two original settlers of Ferndale in Whatcom County, John H. Plaster. Plaster gained fame both for being the Whatcom Probate Judge for eight years and for being the main carpenter contracted by Lynden's Phoebe Goodell Judson in 1876 to carve through the Big Jam on the Nooksack River. Bill and Emily married in 1880 and she spent "two winters" with him before leaving him. She married Archie Barr in 1888, the same year that Alice Jarman married James Elliott.

Bill Jarman returns from England and visits

Click on this thumbnail to see the full size photo.
Wyman's General Store, Birdsview
(F.E. Wyman store)
      Frank E. Wyman General Store. This store may have stood a little southwest of the hotel, in the town of Birdsview. Otto Pressentin's caption notes on the photo: [from left to right] unknown woman holding the Elliott baby who was the granddaughter of Bill Jarman; Willie edge, son by Mrs. Elliott's first marriage; Tom Wilson of Grandy Lake; Frank Wyman, storekeeper; Henry Thompson, future county commissioner; possibly Elmer Wilson, Tom's son; Mrs. Bill Snover; unknown man on ladder with gun; Mrs. Alice Jarman Elliott; James Elliott, hotel operator; "?" McGregor, logger, the man with wheelbarrow; George Ross, homesteaded north shore, Grandy Lake.
      Other Pressentin notes on photo. "250 ft. [east from] Wildwood Chapel." "Wyman moved stock of store to Hamilton in 1899." Journal note: After we originally posted this photo, Kelly A. Siebecke wrote to us and explained that she lives in a house erected on the final site of the hotel, just east of the old Wildwood Chapel; the hotel was moved west from its original site nearer the von Pressentin family ferry: "Occasionally we find stuff in the dirt, remnants from the old hotel days (oxen shoes, square shoeing nails, various metal pieces, etc.) If anyone has other photos of Birdsview and Bessemer, and especially photos of the Wildwood Chapel through the years, please let me know." We concur with that. If you will supply scans or copies (we don't need your originals), please send them to the Journal and we will share.

      Sometime between New Year's and the summer of 1894, Jarman returned from his year-long visit to his home area on the Thames River in England and brought back his niece back with him, Miss Minnie Vine. They wound up staying with the Elliotts for about a year. During that time, Jarman exchanged his habitual Indian garb for clothes like Buffalo Bill Cody wore during his Buffalo Bill Cody's Wild West and Congress of Rough Riders of the World and Bill affected a similar goatee.
      This radical change in dress makes us wonder if Bill traveled west through Chicago. After a very successful tour of Europe, Cody set up a version of his show to the west, outside the grounds of the Chicago World's Fair of 1893 — the White City. That exhibit spiked his popularity in the U.S. and mightily vexed the promoters of the fair, who had rejected Cody's request to take part in the fair. Recall that the fair coincided with the most severe nationwide Depression until the 1930s, so his show doubtless waylaid many families from attending the White City festivities, and besides, he did not have to pay any royalties. So, did Bill decide to affect Cody's costumes after attending the 1893 show, himself, or did he do so after reading news accounts of Cody's shows?
      Perhaps Bill decided to clean up his appearance for his British relatives or perhaps he followed Cody's triumphant appearances and decided to ape the look. He never addressed the fact with his contemporary biographers. Jeffcott discovered that Jarman returned with a $500 legacy from inheriting a family member's estate, a tidy sum during the Depression, when many families in Skagit County went through an entire year counting change instead of dollars. Before visiting the Elliotts in Birdsview, Bill and Minnie went to the Olympic Peninsula where he introduced his niece to his young friend, Richard Eacrett, in the hopes that a romance might blossom, but that did not take root.
      When they arrived in Birdsview in the summer of 1894, Jarman stayed at the hotel and Minnie Vine stayed with the Henry Thompson family, who owned a general store nearby in Birdsview. That was when young Tommy Thompson, then age ten, met Jarman. His memories and the information that his father, Henry, told him about Jarman proved to be important for Jeffcott's book. Tommy recalled in 1956 that the kids knew Jarman as Buffalo Bill and that an old timer in Birdsview told his father, "O, you should not pay any attention to that old sailor's stories; he just makes them up as he tells them."
      Tommy's mother, Margaret, took Minnie Vine under her wing and tried to help her adjust to living in what was still near-wilderness. We know very little about how Jarman interacted with his daughter that summer, but we do know in hindsight that the Elliott family would splinter sometime soon after the turn of the 20th Century. Katherine Savage Pulsipher, Ira Savage's sister, and neighbor Otto Pressentin also shared their memories of Jarman with Jeffcott, but they remembered the Elliott family much better and the breakup that occurred after Jarman and his niece departed. Jarman and his niece apparently left sometime in early 1895.
      Minnie stayed with Mrs. Abraham Greene near Ferndale and worked at dressmaking and general housekeeping. She would visit Margaret Thompson several times in the future. By the time that Minnie was 25, caught the eye of Ferndale neighbor, William Manning, 44. After Margaret advised Minnie that she should follow her heart, the couple married in July 1895 and Minnie became the stepmother to Manning's three children. They subsequently had three children together, but the first one died as an infant. The 1900 census also contained a listing that made me research the Mannings further. A John Manning, a stonecutter, lived with James and Alice Elliott that year. I wondered if he could have been a relative of William Manning. But when I compared their immigration records, I found that William was born in England and immigrated in 1888, while John was born in Scotland and immigrated in 1880. William Manning died in 1922 after attaining prominence in political and civic affairs. Minnie subsequently married to George Higby and died in 1942. Jarman died at the Mannings' farm on June 11, 1912.

James and Alice split up
      When we come to the marital relations between James and Alice Jarman, we find that there are discrepancies between the actual record and Jeffcott's research. We want to emphasize that Jeffcott's research was extensive and well documented in the appendix of his Jarman book. The discrepancies mainly occur in his timeline.
      Jeffcott determined that, soon after Bill and Minnie moved to Ferndale, the Elliotts fought over his "over-fondness for liquor" and financial troubles. Otto Pressentin told Jeffcott that they parted in 1895, about the time that the national financial turmoil quashed the development of Bessemer. Richard Thompson said that Alice Elliott managed a hotel at Marblemount along with a Mrs. Snover, who is in a photo on this page. Pressentin said that a Charlie Simpson owned the Marblemount hotel, which likely was what is now the Log Cabin Inn. After working there for awhile, Alice returned to her birthplace at Samish to live with the Indians. Her mother, also named Alice, was an S'Klallam Indian, from the Olympic Peninsula, who started living with Jarman sometime around 1852, and married him in January 1854; she died at Samish in 1877. Alice II was born at the Samish camp on Feb. 8, 1856. She later lived with Indians at the Swinomish Reservation across the slough from LaConner and committed suicide, by hanging herself, at an unknown date in Anacortes.
      Jeffcott concluded that James Elliott knocked about for a number of years, after apparently selling the hotel. He was mainly employed in logging. One day a log rolled onto one of his legs, smashing it so badly that it was amputated. He contrived an artificial leg and hobbled around on it but was unable to make a living.
      When we looked at the various Federal Censuses, however, we found information that defied Jeffcott's timeline. The census information could dispute his dates altogether, or perhaps James Elliott or his wife gave the enumerator wrong information. The most obvious conflict came from the June 1900 census, where the Elliotts are listed as living next door to the old hotel, although James is no longer the manager, but rather listed as a day laborer. At that time, the enumerator wrote that James was 42, the head of the household, with his wife, Alick (sic). Her age was 39, which was off by five years, since we know that she was born in February 1856. The children are listed as Mabel, age 8; and Willie Edge (stepson), 18; along with boarder John Manning, 40, a stonecutter born in Scotland. If they were indeed living together, then that conflicts with Otto Pressentin's memory. Or had they instead reconciled briefly?
      The biggest surprise of the 1900 census, however, was the fact that Bill's former wife, Emily, living next door, and the note that her second husband, Archie Barr, was then managing the hotel. In addition, we recently found an old newspaper clipping in the Territorial Daughters scrapbook files that included James Elliott's obituary. Dated Sept. 26, 1946, the Courier-Times obituary briefly reported that Elliott died while living with his daughter in Santa Cruz, California. The daughter was Mrs. Royal B. Markland, "the former Mabel Ladd of Hamilton." That was a hint as to her identity, but we were unsuccessful in finding the Ladd family
      In the same file, we found the obituary for the old Elliott Hotel. A story in the Mount Vernon Daily Herald of March 7, 1942, reported that the hotel was completely destroyed by fire the day before. "It operated as a hostel until 1913," the Herald noted, "when it was purchased by W.R. Gee and converted into a residence. Mrs. Gee was alone in the home when the blaze was discovered by a passing schoolboy. . . . Some furniture was saved." Checking in Carol Bates's Hamilton Centennial book, we found that William R. Gee Sr. was an old timer in the Birdsview area. The articles about the fire indicated that the Elliott Hotel was occupied by W.R. Gee when it burned so that could have been his son's family, William R. Gee Jr. We hope that a reader can tell us more about these fascinating families of early Birdsview and Bessemer, and what may have happened to the hotel furniture if it was saved. We would like to think that some of it is in an old timer's house.

Jarman's mystery granddaughter identified
      In another conflict, Jeffcott concluded that when Alice moved to Marblemount, she left her infant daughter, named Mabel Elizabeth, in the care of Frank E. Wyman and his wife, whose general store was apparently within a hundred yards of the hotel. The daughter attended school in Birdsview and then clerked for the Wymans at their store in Hamilton, where they moved in 1899. The 1900 census, however, includes Mabel in the household with her parents in Birdsview.
      Although Mabel may not have been adopted by the Wymans until sometime after 1900, she certainly did join their family and became a key member. By the time that Mabel was in her mid-teens, she decided she wanted to be a nurse, Mr. Wyman sent her to live with his relatives in another state, where she could attend a nursing school nearby. She was remembered as being a very pretty girl and she had two sons, great-grandsons of Jarman and his only living blood relations and survivors. That is all we knew for several years because when Jeffcott contacted Mabel in 1957 she extracted a promise from him that he would keep her married name a secret.
      After researching, we determined that she was born earlier than presumed. In the Bates book we found a school record from 1903 that lists her age as 12 so she was apparently born early in the hotel period, probably in 1891, which also coincides with the 1900 Census. Then in 2004 our questions were answered with a flourish, but not by our direct research. Instead, Jarman's great-great-grandson emailed the Journal after reading our early article on the Jarman legend. We are finally able to unlock the secret that Jeffcott kept until his death on January 4, 1969
      Before we were contacted, however, we followed a false lead. The 1906 book, Illustrated History of Skagit & Snohomish Counties includes a brief note about the Everett Herald,

      In June 1903, F.E. Wyman, formerly of Duluth, assumed the editorial management of the [Everett Daily] Herald, and under his able, reliable guidance the Herald continued its forward movement. September 1, 1905, a syndicate of Everett business men at the head of which was James B. Best, who had been business manager of the Herald for some time previously, organized the Daily Herald Company and purchased the property from Mr. Perkins... Mr. Best was elected president and manager of the new company and succeeded Mr. Wyman as editor.
      I assumed, as did descendants of his family, that this was our F.E. Wyman and in this case we can all be forgiven. As Snohomish author David Dilgard confirmed, this Herald editor was also named Frank E. Wyman, which is not common named shared by many. In addition, there is another F.E. Wyman to tempt the unwary. Capt. Fred E. Wyman — also referenced as F.E — originally married in Whatcom County at Semiahmoo in 1894 and later returned there where he served on the Bellingham city council, starting in 1912. Once again, I share my pet peeve about frontier editors preferring to identify men by their initials instead of their full names.
      Our Frank E. Wyman of Hamilton was the grandson of Skiyou pioneer Stephen Benson and nephew of Steamboat Dan Benson. He moved from Michigan to the Skiyou area with the Bensons sometime in the late 1880s and was enumerated in the 1889 Territorial Census as living with the Bensons. He apparently soon built his hardware store at Birdsview/Bessemer because the photo of the store seems to have been taken in 1891-2. He was married sometime in the interim but we have no details of it; he could have married back in Michigan. We do know that the couple had a daughter together. Sometime during the nationwide Depression of 1893-97 he moved his business to Hamilton. We have no idea what happened to his original building. He served as mayor of Hamilton from 1902-03 and was on the city council. Frank and his wife raised Mabel and she completed at least the elementary grades in the original Hamilton school on the property that William Hamilton donated.

Mabel Elliott's fortunes change for the good
      Mabel clerked at Frank's Dry Goods/General Store and when Mabel was somewhere between 16 and 18, she told the Wymans that she would like to be a nurse, so they sent her to California, where some of Frank's relatives apparently lived. That is where her grandson's information completes the story. A note by the enumerator of the 1910 Federal Census, taken in June that year, indicates that James Elliott was still living in Birdsview and that Mabel was living with him, working as a "servant in a hotel," and that James worked as a teamster. But she must have just come home temporarily because, on Dec. 29, 1910, Mabel married Dr. Ira B. Ladd, one of the most noted physicians of Stockton. We conclude that she may have attended a nursing school there in the year before that. Ladd was the son of a Vermonter named George Ladd who emigrated to the new state of California via the Isthmus of Panama in 1853, or alternatively sailed with his father as a gold-seeker around the Cape Horn in 1851, depending on which biography you read. He became a very accomplished real estate promoter in Stockton, as well as holding a life certificate as a teacher, headed the school board there and was appointed by Governor George Perkins to be state commissioner of the Yosemite Valley. He died in Stockton in 1902.
      Ira B. Ladd was the youngest of George's four sons with his wife, Arkansas native Abigail Bourland. He was named for his uncle, who accompanied George to California as a teenager. To say that Mabel married well — especially as compared to her mother and grandmother, is to put it lightly. The family of parents and brothers were all relatively wealthy and had worked hard as pioneers to achieve their status. Along with Dr. Ira's B. Ladd's biography, we found this reference to his family in the 1923 book, History of San Joaquin County, which shared memories of back in the 1850s when they were hard-riding teamsters dodging the bandits, just like in the old Western movies, and just as legendary as Bill Jarman:

History of San Joaquin County, California with Biographical Sketches
Historic Record Company, Los Angeles, CA, 1923
Chapter VIII, Early Day Transportation

      The three Ladd brothers, George, John and Ira were in the commission and freighting business, George conducting the store, and the two last-named driving teams on the road. In September, 1864, while Ira and an employee, each man driving a team, were approaching Knights Ferry about sundown, two Mexican horsemen came out of the bushes and approaching the drivers told them to dismount and hand over their money. The teamsters were armed but helpless and made no resistance. The Mexicans obtained $215 from Ira Ladd [the doctor's uncle] and $185 from the hired man and rode away, foolishly forgetting to disarm their victims, believing that they would not pursue. Ladd and his man quickly stripped the harness from their mules and started on the trail of the Mexicans, soon overtook them and both parties began firing. The "mustangs" of the Mexicans were more speedy than the mules and they escaped. Ira Ladd was wounded in the leg by a pistol ball, and throughout his life was slightly lame. . . .
      The industry, honesty and intelligence of the teamsters as portrayed by the Republican was fully maintained in their future lives. They married, became men of families and quite prominent in civic and political life. Fred Yost built a pretty two-story brick home on California Street and his children are now honored citizens. George S. Ladd, for twenty years was city superintendent of schools. . . . There were others upon the road as well as the teamsters and they were the highwaymen, who not only held up the stages, but the teamsters as well, robbing them sometimes of several hundred dollars. That these drivers were no cowards was evident from the bravery of George Eberhardt and Ira Ladd.

The Big Oak Flat Road(1955)
by Irene D. Paden and Margaret E. Schlichtmann

      A driver's team was his love, his livelihood and his chief claim to distinction and the teamsters were important people in the '50s, '60s and '70s. Never as dashing as the stage drivers, a few specimens of whom took pleasure in scaring the Yosemite tourists out of their eye-teeth, but very substantial citizens. Many of them owned their valuable outfits and many were sons of the landed proprietors of the region. Some of the best-known of those who drew freight from the loading levee at Stockton out past the Nightingale and into the mountains [included] Ira Ladd.
      After his education in the Stockton public schools of Stockton, Ira Ladd, the younger, graduated from the Cooper Medical College of San Francisco as an M.D. in 1896. Ira was soon commissioned as a captain in the U.S. Army in the Spanish-American War, and served as chief surgeon at Manila, in the Philippine Islands. He was described in one biography as a skillful surgeon who built up a large practice and he also served as the city health officer of Stockton. When the Emergency Hospital was opened there, he became surgeon-in-charge, and served in that position until his death in 1913. He married first to a Mrs. Mollie E. (Grattan) Cross, who apparently died sometime after the turn of the 20th century. Mabel Elliott was his second wife, 23 years younger, and they soon had two sons, Ira B. and Bourland E., the latter born in November 1913, five months after his father died very young at age 52.
      Just before he died, Ira bought a twenty-acre ranch in the Nightingale region, which he planted to peaches and walnuts. After her very modest beginnings, Mabel was left a relatively wealthy woman after her husband died. She took charge of the ranch and after bringing "it to a high state of cultivation," she sold it at a profit. We lose track of here by the 1920s until 1940 when our correspondent, her grandson, Carl Ladd was born to her son, Bourland Elliott Ladd, and Barbara Jean (Warren). He is trying to find a photo of Mabel, which we are eager to see to determine if she resembled Bill more or if she has Alice's Indian features. Mabel married a second time in an unknown year after 1930, to Royal B. Markland in Stockton. In the 1930 Federal Census for Stockton, she is listed as a widow with the surname of Ladd. Both boys were living with her as well as James. She worked as a nurse for a private family.
      By the time that Carl was in school, the family seems to have slid down a notch or two in wealth. Judging from the 1930 census, that turn in fortune could have started much earlier, maybe as a result of the national Depression. Carl remembers that the family all lived around Mabel and that she babysat for the grandchildren. His mother worked for a credit union and his father drove truck for a cement company while Grandpa Royal worked at an old Stockton hotel. We know from James Elliott's obituary that he died in 1946 while living with Mabel and Royal at Santa Cruz, but sometime after that the couple moved to Sacramento and Carl's family moved with them. According to California death records, Mabel and Royal died within a month of each in the fall of 1968, while living in Los Angeles; Mabel was 77 and Royal was 83 at the time of death.


1. Amasa Peg-Leg Everett
      Everett not only discovered coal on the mountain opposite Hamilton, but he also discovered the limestone cliffs northeast of present Concrete that led to the cement industry there. Here is the link to the original Journal profile of Everett and his family. It is from our original old domain and will be updated in 2008. [Return]

2. Tommy Thompson family
      Tommy and his family were pioneers of Birdsview, Concrete and Grasmere. His father, Henry, was an English immigrant. His brother, Richard, died in the famous January 1918 train wreck in Sedro-Woolley. And Tommy became one of the most famous forest rangers in the Northwest and married into the equally famous historical Minkler family of Lyman. [Return]

3. Emily Plaster Jarman Barr
      Emily's mother was a Lummi Indian and the couple moved onto the mother's allotment on the Lummi Reservation sometime after 1900. Emily died in Ferndale in January 1921. We are unsure about Archie. Their son Archie died in 1971. [Return]

4. Alice and the S'Klallam Indians
      Alice was a descendant of the famous House of Ste-tee-thlum, three generations of chiefs of various tribes from the Olympic Peninsula to the Samish tribe. You can read about them and her family in Mary Ann Lambert Vincent's definitive 1960 S'Klallam genealogy book, The 7 Brothers of the House of Ste-tee-thlum. Or you can read the other stories in Issue 40 that include our in-depth research of the tribes of Washington in the mid-19th century, along with the House itself. [Return]

5. The Benson family
      You can read about Steamboat Dan and his family, pioneers of the Skiyou district from 1878, at thisJournal site. It is from our original old domain and will be updated in 2008. [Return]

(Samish Island book cover)
Links, background reading and sources
      Blanket Bill Jarman and the stories associated with him are the entire contents of Issue 40. Go back to the Table of Contents for that issue to find the links to all the stories. If you are not yet a subscriber to the Subscribers Journal magazine online, please see the complete story list and details of how to subscribe. We are pleased to announce the publication of a complete history of the island where the Samish Indians were based. Samish Island, a History: From the Beginning to the 1970s by Susan and Fred Miller is a terrific new book and a loving story of the hook of land just west of Edison in Skagit County. Look for it at your favorite bookstore or online. There is no ISBN number, but the publishing information is: Mount Vernon, WA: Copy & Print Store, 2007. Gail Hopley laid out the book, which also includes poems and stories by and from one of our favorite writers, Berniece Hoyt Leaf, of Sedro-Woolley and Juniper Beach. When we finish reading the book, we will review it in depth in the free home pages of the Journal. If you want to purchase the self-published Miller book in your area, Fred shared a current list of retail locations: "WD Foods in Allen; Skagit County Museum at LaConner and Anacortes Museums; Stowe's Clothing Store and Horen's Drugstore, both in Burlington; Rosabella's Gift and Apple Store on Allen-West and Farm to Market Road; Rhododendron Cafe on Chuckanut Drive; and Blau's Oysters, here on Samish Island. Books can also be ordered thru our e-mail ( and at Hopley's e-mail at (ghopley@wavecable,com). Or people can phone me at 360-766-6548 or Gail Hopley at 766-6823. We will go on line to such outlets as Amazon at some point. We arranged the publication ourselves, so there is no publisher sales outlet." If you live outside the area, look for it at your favorite bookstore or better yet, ask them to stock it. There is no ISBN number, but the publishing information is: Mount Vernon, WA: Copy & Print Store, 2007.
Attention: We have reserved the Burlington Library meeting room for a presentation on October 18. This replaces our original date of Sept. 27, which had a conflict. We will review rare photos and documents about the settlement of the towns north of the Skagit River and west of Sterling. Reservations are not required, but we would appreciate your feedback for planning purposes if you would like to attend. Please click this email button ->> with the number of people, your remarks and what you would like to see. Or read more details here

Story posted on July 18, 2002, last updated Aug. 30, 2007 . . . Please report any broken links so we can update them
This article originally appeared in Issue 40 of our Subscribers-paid Journal online magazine

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Please let us show you residential and commercial property in Sedro-Woolley and Skagit County 2204 Riverside Drive, Mount Vernon, Washington . . . 360 708-8935 . . . 360 708-1729
(bullet) Oliver Hammer Clothes Shop at 817 Metcalf Street in downtown Sedro-Woolley, 86 years.
(bullet) Joy's Sedro-Woolley Bakery-Cafe at 823 Metcalf Street in downtown Sedro-Woolley.
(bullet) Check out Sedro-Woolley First section for links to all stories and reasons to shop here first
or make this your destination on your visit or vacation.
(bullet) Are you looking to buy or sell a historic property, business or residence?
We may be able to assist. Email us for details.
(bullet) Peace and quiet at the Alpine RV Park, just north of Marblemount on Hwy 20
Park your RV or pitch a tent by the Skagit River, just a short drive from Winthrop or Sedro-Woolley

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