Clarence Bagley.

History of Seattle from the earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 2) online

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From the Earliest Settlement to the
Present Time










686713 A



R 1933 L

Copyright, 1916, by


1 JaiiiL-l I'.agley Frontispiece

l!ird's-eye View of Seattle in 1878 456

I'ioneer Place in the Days of tlie Pioneers and in 1914 458

The Develo])nient of a Canyon ; Cherry Street in 1914 4C2

I'ine Street, Looking South, in 1S80 and ii;i5 466

The Changes Wrought in First Avenue Xorlh from Pioneer Place 470

Comer of Tiiinl and Union in 1883 and 1914 476

Occidental Hotel in 1881 and 1915 482

One of Seattle's First Street Cars, 1883 486

A Section of First Avenue South, About 1878 486

Occidental Avenue and Yesler Way in 1884 and 1914 490

Center of Railway Activity in 1885 and 1914 494

Third and Union. About 1872, antl in 1914 502

Elliott I'.ay, South of Seattle, in 1874 506

Elliott Hay in 1915, Showing lluildings on Filled-in Tide Flats 306

The W yckholT 1 lonie 510

The Alaska lluilding 310

1 )(iniy Mill from iMrst Avenue and Columl)ia in 1878 and 1915 514

Thirty Years of Progress : \'iew on Occidental Avenue 518

Progress of First Avenue, Looking North from Cherry Street, 1914 526

\'iew from Denny Hill in 1883 and 1916 528

First Avenue North of Gierry Street in 1875 and 1915 532

Steamer Minnesota at Her Dock in Smith's Cove 534

Pier I, I'oot of Yesler \\'ay 33(1

South I 'ier I. Port of Seattle "nj'vS''

The I looth I""isherics Company 538

The Ford Company "538

Grand 'I'runk Pacific Company's Dock on Railroad Avenue 540

Galbraith. I'.acon & Company's Dock at Wall Street 542

\'iew of Seattle from the Hay "346

Looking South ( )ver the City "546

Looking Xorth on Second Avenue in 1890 and 191 5 548

Pioneer Place; About i8<>o and in 191 5 550

\'iew Prior to the Regrade in 191 5 534

Madison Street During the Regrading and in 191 5 558

Looking Toward the Olympics from Near Sixth Avenue and Seneca 560

Northwest from Jackson Regrade District 560

Play Festival in 1910 364

Ravenna Park "^fiA

I.eschi Park ; Lake Washington "568

Alki Hathing Reach 570

From Court 1 louse Park. Looking West 574

Denny Hill Reerrade District in 1915 578

First Avenue South in 19 15 "378

P.uildings Erected Between 1905 and 1913 "382



View Northwest from the L. C. Smith Building 582

Looking North on Second Avenue in 1891 and in 1915 586

Old Armory on Union Street near Fourth Avenue 590

Hotel Frye : The Armory : Arctic Club 594

Section of Seattle's Water Front in 191 5, Looking East 598

Sears, Roebuck & Company's Building 600

Frederick & Nelson's Store 602

The MacDougall & South wick Company's Store 604

Section of Seattle's Water Front, Looking Westward 608

Seattle's Linion Depots 612

Novelty Mills 626

Welding & Independent Fisheries Company 626

Albers Brothers Milling Company 626

The Times Building 636

Looking North from the Smith Building 638

Looking North from the Hoge Building 640

The Kenny Home, West Seattle 650

The Monmouth 650

The Kennedy 654

The Normandie 654

The Sorrento 656

The Ben Lomond 656

The Van Siclen 656

The Sylvian 656

Mount Rainier 664

The Gables 668

The Littlefield 668

The Lorrington 668

The Delmar 668

Some Pretty Suburban Homes 676

One of Seattle's Many Playgrounds 698

The Fredonia 672

The Kenny Home 672

The Zindorph 672

The Grenoble 672

Bell, W. N 824

Blaine, E. F 796

Bonney, L. W 816

Boren. CD 852

Braymer, A. A 842

Brown, Amos 756

Denny, D. T 704

Frye. G. F 722

Furth, Jacob J ^2

Greene, R. S 728

Haller. G. 744

Hinckley, T. D 78S

Jackson, D. B 762

Kilbourne, E. C 76')

Kinnear. George 714

Kinnear, J. R 804

Latimer, N. H 800

I^eary, John 724

Lord H. C 792

McGilvra, J. J 740

Maynard, D. S 828

Mercer, Thomas 701


Osgood, F. II 812

Porsch, T. W 836

Smith, H. A 846

Spencer, R. R .%8

Struve, F. K 752

Stnive, H. G 75°

Thomson, R. 1 1 820

Trimble, W. P 860

Webster, John 772

Yesler, H.I 708



The opportunity to prove that Seattle was established on a foundation of law
and order, that it was not a child of every passinjj whim or prejudice, came
early in iS.ST) when the Anti-Chinese craze reached its boundaries. It was but
another opportunity tor the city's sturdy stock of resolute lucii to come forward
as the champions of ])cacc and orderly progress.

Some competent writer will one day realize the possibilities of the "Chinese
Question" in its \arious aspects, particularly so far as the Pacific Coast was so
long affected by the tide of immigration of the natives of the Flowery Kingdom.
Agitation regarding Chinese immigration was begun almost immediately fol-
lowing their earliest advent to the Pacific Coast, or in the early '50s, and was
continued intermittently, for nearly forty years. The owners of large tracts of
land in California, and the early railroad builders there, were desirous of an
increased immigration, while nearly all other classes soon became convinced that
the true interests of the people would be subserved by the exclusion of this class
of alien population, who could never be assimilated and whose only object in
coming was to earn here what would be a competence in China and to return
there as soon as their desire was attained. Unlike the immigrants from Europe
they neither sought an asylum from oppression nor tiie enjoyment of the bles-
sings of a free government.

Dennis Kearney and his fellow sand-lotters of San Francisco, in 1R77, were
only more violent than their predecessors in their slogan "The Chinese must
go," and the culmination came in 1885 with violence, arson and murder in
Colorado, Washington and other parts of the Pacific Coast.

Slavery and the slave trade and the i)roblems connected with the |)resence
of the black race in these United States have evolved the highest statesmanship
of our great men for over three-quarters of a century, and if the next half
century shall find this race problem adjusted so that all laws discriminating
against our "colored brother" shall have disappeared from the statute books
the time will have been well spent. In only a lesser degree has the ]>resence of
the yellow race affected social conditions on the Pacific Coast, the field of labor
and the domain of politics. All menial household employments engaged in by
men are looked upon here with greater aversion than in the Eastern states,
because of the fact that the main source of supply so long came from tin- members



of that race, and to the same cause may be properly attributed the dishke among
many of the white race to accept employment as unskilled laborers.

The earliest treaty of "peace, amity and commerce" with China was concluded
July 3, 1844, and proclaimed April 18, 1846, that country being officially known
as the Ta Tsing Empire. By this treaty only five Chinese ports were opened to
American vessels and citizens. At the places of anchorage in these ports Ameri-
cans were permitted to pass and repass in the immediate neighborhood, but
not to make excursions into the country among the villages at large, nor to
repair to the public marts for the purpose of disposing of goods unlawfully.
The limits were most carefully fixed past which it would not be lawful for
American citizens to go. This treaty was forced upon China and was one-sided,
as no provision was made in it for its citizens to come to the United States, nor
at that time did it seem to be contemplated that any of them would desire to do so.

The discovery of gold in California soon changed all this and it was not long
after the great rush to the mines began before the more adventurous of these
people commenced to straggle in. They made no attempt at first to become
miners. Employment as cooks, laundrymen and in other menial positions was
given them at high wages, which served to attract their fellows in ever increasing

Placer mining employed every able-bodied man, who was willing to engage
in severe manual labor, for over twenty years in California, and the great Civil
war called so many men into the ranks of the two armies that the demand
for laborers was greater than the supply during all that period, and for several
years afterward owing to the refusal of thousands of discharged soldiers to go
to work. It is a well-known fact that the American tramp made his appearance
about that time. The completion of the first railroad from the Missouri River
to the Pacific Ocean would have been delayed for years had it not been for the
employment of thousands upon thousands of Chinese coolies all along the line.
Up to thjs time there had been little complaint from any quarter regarding the
presence of the Mongolian, except from the sociologist who soon saw the evil
influence it exerted upon social and moral conditions in the more populous

The return of the million soldiers and sailors to civil life and the influx of
foreign laborers of course depressed the labor market and tended to lower wages
and then the competition of "Chinese cheap labor" began to be felt and resented
in California and gradually elsewhere on the Pacific Slope.

A second treaty between the two countries was made in 1858 similar to
the other. A third in 1868, regulating immigration from China to the United
States and forbidding any but voluntary immigration of Chinese, and in 1880,
the treaty restricting Chinese immigration into the United States was ratified.
About this time Congress also passed what became known as the Chinese Exclu-
sion Act.

To the failure to enforce the provisions of this last treaty and of the con-
gressional law may undoubtedly be ascribed the troubles that finally culminated
in crime and bloodshed and almost fratricidal war.

Prior to the disturbances and outrages so prevalent all over the Pacific
Coast in 1885, it was impossible for the people of the Eastern states to fully
comprehend the feelings here toward the Chinese. There, the number of the

;\T . ■;■■ •



Chinese was limited and the occupations they pursued seldom brought them into
competition with white laborers. On this coast every branch of industry felt
the oppressing influence of their competition. It was not surprising that wide-
spread discontent should arise wherever any considerable number of the hated
race should be domiciled.

In a report made by the executive in October, i8S(j. ihe following appears:
"The fact is not to be disguised that the people of the Pacific Coast, with very
few exceptions, possess a spirit of hostility towards the Chinese residents, and,
although a large proportion of our citizens entertain feelings of loyalty and
patriotism toward the Government, yet in several large towns they are inclined to
be lenient to those who engage in acts hostile to the Chinese ; and this fact makes
it exceedingly difhcult to secure convictions of this class of offenders against the
law. This feeling has been greatly aggravated by the fact that notwithstanding
the terms of the so-called 'restriction act' — large numbers of Chinese have con-
trived to cross the border from British Columbia in deliance of law, and it has
been found that, with the limited customs force at its disposal, the Governmcnl
is practically unable to enforce the exclusion of Chinese under the terms of
the law.

"While this is not the place to enter into an extended argument on liie sub-
ject of the undesirability of Chinese residents in great numbers, yet I may be
permitted to urge the view- which is naturally taken by American residents of the
Pacific Coast, that it is important to have that country settled by free .Xmerican
laborers, who have respect for the institutions and laws of our country, and who
will establish permanent homes, and who will rear their families and tr;iin their
children to have proper respect for labor in even its luuublest sjjhere."

The governor might truthfully have added tiiat no white man ever becomes
so degraded in morals or stee])ed in crime that the spirit of the Pharisee is
entirely eliminated. His attitude toward the man whose skin happens to be black,
yellow or red is ever one of contempt and hatred. It was not always the most
vicious element in evcr\' community that took the lead in the anti-Chinese agita-
tion and in the rioting and munlers that followed in due sequence; it is to their
everlasting shame that a large part of the sober, industrious and peaceable citizens
joined the other class and became lawbreakers ami criminals with them, as well
as at all times their apologists an<l defenders.

The collapse of the "Villard boom" in 1883 was followed by great liiLincial
depression for about five years. The Xorthwest felt its effects perlia|)s most
severely, and here the professional agitator found the times ripe for his unholy
teachings. All the ill effects of over-s|)eculation, unwise investments and the
resultant business paralysis and consequent privations and sulTering were laid
at the door of the Chinaman, and the cry of "The Chinese must go" resounded
from I.os Angeles to the international boundary on the north and as far east
as Colorado and Wyoming.

In fact, the first general outbreak occurred at Rock .Sjirings, Wyo., .Sep-
tember 4, i8<S5. Dennis Kearney and his army of sandlot agitators had beaten
and otherwise ill-treated Chinamen in San Francisco for years, but at Rock
Springs the people rose practically en masse and murdered eleven Chinamen
and drove out about five hundred more.


This was the signal for an concerted attack upon these people at many points
on this coast, but more particularly on Puget Sound. A labor organization
known as the Knights of Labor seemed to have the lawless phase of anti-Chi-
nese agitation in charge.

The news of the Wyoming outrage, instead of being universally condemned,
was loudly applauded by the masses, and the next day, September 5, 1885, an
attack more cowardly and brutal was made upon a party of Chinese hop pickers
in Issaquah Valley. The Wyoming mob set upon their victims in broad daylight
and the latter had some show to defend themselves, but at Issaquah they were
set upon as they slept in their tents and three of them shot to death by hidden
assailants under the cover of darkness. The others escaped with their lives by
plunging into the stream that ran past their camp and then hiding in the thick
brush along its banks until they could get away in safety.

It was a matter of current knowledge in the community where this murder
was committed who were the guilty leaders and followers, but public sentiment
was so strong that although they were brought to trial no conviction could be

These two widely separated outrages added fuel to the flames. Public meet-
ings were held in almost every town and village west of the Cascades and north
of the Columbia. Incendiarj' speeches were made, applauding the work of the
murderers and exhorting the people to similar deeds. The determination was
openly expressed to rid the country of the Chinamen at all hazards, peaceably if
possible, otherwise by intimidation, assault and murder if need be. Public
officers sworn to support the law, lawyers educated to expound and uphold the
law, prominent citizens occupying positions of trust, all were leaders as well as
actors in these subversions of law. The\' made no disguise of their sentiments
or their purposes.

September 19th the miners at Black Diamond drove the Chinamen out of
that place, injuring nine of them. The next day a public meeting was held in
Seattle and these acts were approved. September 23d, Mayor Henry L. Yesler
called a public meeting in the interests of law and order, which was addressed
by probably a dozen of Seattle's leading citizens, and resolutions were adopted
counseling adherence to law, but promising to aid in the removal of the China-
men by all lawful means.

The corporations who were large employers of these people discharged them
and the coolies flocked into the larger towns and aggravated the situation there,
though every steamer sailing to San Francisco carried away large numbers of
them to that place.

September 28th an "anti-Chinese congress" met in Seattle. Every labor
organization was represented, as well as many of those purely fraternal in their
character. Every socialist and anarchist who could walk or steal a ride to
Seattle was a self-elected but none the less welcome delegate. Long-haired men
and short-haired women were noticeable by their numbers and their noise. The
body was presided over by Mayor Weisbach of Tacoma.

This body adopted a series of resolutions full of denunciation and hate, and
the ultimatum was proclaimed that all Chinamen must leave Western Washington
not later than November 15th following. On October 3d, at Tacoma, a mass
meeting endorsed the action of the Seattle "congress" and appointed a com-


1914- ^


mittce of fifteen to carry out the will of the two bodies. This committee at once
served notice upon the Chinese in that city that they must leave within thirty

John IF. McGraw was then sheriff of King County and in him the officers
of the court and the supporters of the law found a willing and courageous
servant and ally, h'rom time to time his force of deputies was increased. These
were chosen from among the most determined and experienced of their class
and they were ef|ui])|)ed with the best of weapons and alnmdance of ammunition.

Early in October danger seemed imminent, not only of disturbances incident
to the Chinese agitation, but the ]>rcsence of a large number of idle, vicious
and criminal men. whose number was swelled daily by arrivals here from all
over the Northwest, made an outbreak of pillage and wanton destruction of
pro]ierly more than possible. A few of the leading citizens decided to call a
meeting antl agree upon |)lans for mutual ])rolection. Tickets of admission
were issued to the number of about six hundred, and .Saturday evening, October
.^1, most of those invited assembled in Frye's Opera House which then occupied
the northeast corner of Eirst Avenue and Marion Street. This led to the naming
of the su])porters of law and order the "Opera House Party," while the other
was called the ".\nti-Chinese Tarty."

Henry L. ^'esler. mayor, was named chairman and d. Morris Haller, secre-
tary. Judge Orange Jacobs presented the following, which was read and adopted
by acclamation :

Resolved, That we regard the existence of the Chinese among us as a dis-
turbing element, and are strongly in favor of the vigorous enforcement of the
Restriction Act, and of any amendments thereto that may be necessary to
accomplish its beneficent purjrose, and we fully recognize and advocate the
])aramount claims of all laborers, who are or may become citizens of the
United States, and we recommend their employment by individuals and cor-
jioratioiis ; but we are also, as a matter of honor, right and safely, both as
individuals and as a community, in favor of law and order, and we hereby
l)ledge ourselves to the constituted authorities wiiiiin tliis jurisdiction, whether
tiie same be Federal, territorial, county or municii)al. to aid them to the fullest
extent in the suppression of all attempts to destroy life or property or to
endanger the public peace or tranquillity.

Invitation was given to all present to sign the resolution. A few declined
and withdrew from the meeting. The object of the gathering was then more
fully explained and all ])resent affixed their signatures. Sherifif McGraw then
ste])])ed on the jilatform and formally a])i)aintcd each man present a deputy
sheriff with all the legal powers ])ertaining to that office. Justice (ieorge G.
l.yon at once administered the oath of office.

Cornelius H. Ilanford, George B. Adair, George G. Lyon, William H.
Pum|)hrcy, (I. .Morris Haller, Charles Hopkins, ]\ichard Osborn, Charles
I'. Mimday. L. Robbins and Harry A. I'igelow were appointed by Sheriff
Mctiraw as aides. The city was divide<l iiUo twenty districts and captains
appointed to take charge of the same, as follows :

George W. Stetson, George W. Bullene, E. A. Turner, John G. Scurry,
William Robertson. J. W. l-'dwards, F. J. I'.urns, William G. Latimer, (ieorge
W. Hall. J. Colkett, Robert Russell, John Langston, George Kinnear,


W. R. Forrest, C. T. LeBallister, E. J. Powers, David Kellogg, George D. Hill,
Joseph Green, John C. Haines, Granville O. Haller.

A few days later, the United States District Court convened and a grand
jury was called. Roger S. Greene was judge; William H. White, attorney;
Cornelius H. Hanford, assistant attorney ; John H. McGraw, sheriff of King
County. They were as noble, fearless, conscientious lot of men as ever gathered
in time of turmoil and danger to discharge their official duties at all hazard.
District Court was convened on Monday, October 5th, and a session of the grand
jury called at once. Judge Greene's charge was a remarkable document. As
he was the representative of the law and one of the most conservative of
citizens, a few extracts from it properly may be given to indicate what was
the sentiment of the better element of the people here at that time regarding
"The Chinese Question."

After reading ten or a dozen sections from the criminal code regarding
riot, arson, unlawful assemblage, or destruction of property, he said:

"If any breach of these provisions has occurred, it has probably had some
relation to the presence of Chinese in our county and to competition between
Chinese and American labor. You doubtless share, as I do, the prevalent con-
viction of the people of the Pacific states and territories that under present
conditions, and viewed from an economic standpoint, the Chinese are out of
place in America and their presence on this coast is an obstacle to its highest
business prosperity. But a resort to lawless violence to promote their removal
is utterly inexcusable. Business prosperity may be hindered by presence of
the Chinese, but business prosperity will be scattered to the four winds if this
county is to be published to the world as the place to which social agitators
can safely resort to try their experiments of mob law. You sit here today
as the exponents of the good sense, the fearlessness, the love of law and
the determined will of this community. Let it be seen by your promptitude and
firmness that it is the law-loving and peaceful citizens who wield here both
the scepter and the sword.

"Ladies and gentlemen, your special duty is to inquire of crime, but ac-
cording to time-honored usage your function extends beyond that. It is your
privilege, and may be for the common advantage, to report the existence of
public mischief, for relief against which no adequate legislation exists. A
report of that nature, temperate but firm in tone, and abounding in manifest
good sense, transmitted from this court, would command a respectful hearing,
either in our Legislature or in Congress, and would probably be followed speedily
by efficient remedial measures.

"As it seems to me, the presence of the Chinese on this coast is a real
grievance, the substantial mischief of which can be summed up under five
heads :

"ist. Undercompetitive cheapness of Chinese labor. This is owing to
irreducible differences between Chinese and American modes of living. It
secures to the Chinese an exclusive monopoly of labor supply, to whatever
extent the demand for such labor as they furnish can be absorbed.

"2nd. Alienage of Chinese labor. This prevents that geometric increase
in citizen population, which would follow the influx of white labor.


"3r(J. Export of the earnings of the Chinese. This puts their laljor on
the footing of a foreign import, makes us in a sense tributary to China and
prevents that geometric increase in weaUh which would follow the expenditure
and capitalization of their earnings here.

"4th. Padding out the population with the Chinese element, which has to
be protected, but which is unavailable for protecting, whether against enemies
foreign or domestic.

"5th. Race and class irritation, which is a perpetual menace to social order,
and necessitates either an abnormally expensive civil service or a never ending

Online LibraryClarence BagleyHistory of Seattle from the earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 2) → online text (page 1 of 60)