Clarence Bagley.

History of Seattle from the earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 3) online

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that his public service shall be done along other lines. In one of the well known magazines,
under the caption of "Interesting Westerners," appeared the following article, which indi-
cates something of Mr. Martin's splendid work in trying to educate the people up to a
sense of responsibility for protection against fire. The article reads : "Every year America
suffers an appalling fire loss, a loss that would build two Panama Canals every third year.
In the crusade against this waste, F. J. Martin, of Seattle, is the leader as concerns the
Pacific coast. He is indefatigable as a campaigner, not only among the thousands of policy


holders in the mutual fire insurance associations which he has organized but before the pub-
He. Insistently he demands that the criminal carelessness of the American people be
reduced, affirming that two-thirds of our fire loss of two hundred and thirty-five million
dollars last year might easily have been prevented with ordinary precautions and fore-

" 'AH fires are the same size in the beginning,' declares Mr. Martin. 'A bucket of
water at the right time is worth perhaps a thousand gallons ten minutes later. It's not
larger fire departments that we need, but better facilities for preventing fires and detecting
them instantly after their outbreak.

" 'Think for a moment what we annually consign to our National Ash Heap. It would
build a house on every fifty-foot lot on both sides of a street extending from San Francisco
to Seattle, or from Chicago to New York. It may be represented by a trainload of wheat
(at average prices) extending from the Atlantic to the Pacific — burned up — lost forever.

" 'The man who doesn't think replies : "Oh ! It's covered by insurance !" But, as I
said, he doesn't think. Insurance never replaces anything. It merely distributes the loss
that the burden may be lighter on the individual. Our fire waste of almost five hundred
dollars a minute is an economic loss to the entire nation. A preventable fire should be
made a crime, as it is in so many European cities. We are indeed "rich and careless." '

"Mr. Martin's arguments for the adequate fire protection of the contents of buildings
tend to restore confidence in lumber as building material. 'If wood occupied the place it is
entitled to, both in the interests of economy and safety, our lumber mills would be run-
ning day and night and our fire waste would be greatly reduced. The remedy lies in a cam-
paign of education reaching all classes of prospective builders — architects, contractors,
property owners.'

"Mutual fire insurance was virtually introduced into tlic Far West by Air. Martin. He
has the distinction of organizing two of the conspicuously successful fire insurance insti-
tutions founded on the Pacific coast, the Oregon Fire Relief Association and the North-
western Mutual Fire Association. He is now president of the latter and also of the fire
alarm company by whose apparatus the Panama- Pacific Exposition buildings are protected."

That Mr. Martin is appreciative of the social amenities of life is indicated in the fact
that he is a member of the Rainier Club, the Arctic and Country Clubs and the Country
Club of Earlington. He holds membership in the First Baptist church of Seattle, in
which he is filling the office of deacon and in the work of the church he takes a most active
and helpful interest. He has been a member of the state Baptist convention board and
a member of the executive committee of the northern Baptist convention. He is num-
bered among Seattle's "good citizens," having taken an aggressive stand for that which
is helpful in civic affairs. He is attractive personally, with his broad forehead, his keen
eye and his ready smile. Thoughtful and earnest when occasion demands, at all times
strong and purposeful, he stands as a high type of American manhood and chivalry.


The National Life Insurance Company of Montpelier, Vermont, has a capable repre-
sentative in De Witt A. Clark of Seattle, who is state agent for Washington. This com-
pany is a purely mutual corporation owned and operated by its policy holders, to whom
all its profits go. It has been in existence more than sixty-five years and has passed safely
tlirough the financial panics of 1857, 1873, 1893 and 1907. It has no agreement, contract or
arrangement, in fact or by inference, with any person, firm, bank or trust company, or any
other combination which in the slightest degree limits or liens its ability to control directly
its own acts in all respects for the benefit and service of its members. It is a corpora-
tion with over sixty-three million, five hundred thousand dollars of assets — assets that con-
tain nothing but United States, state and municipal bonds, first mortgages, liens on its
own policies, and only such real estate as is needed for its office requirements. This quality
of assets has enabled the company to invest over one hundred and ten million dollars during
the last thirteen years without the loss of a cent of interest or principal.


The National does business within continental United States exclusively, both in its
insurance and investment branches. It has anticipated in actual practice the best insurance
laws of the country and does business throughout its field on a uniform basis. It has raised
its dividends five times in the last eight years and increased its surplus every year during
the past twenty-six years. In the year just closed the company earned five and eleven
hundredths per cent on mean ledger assets. Its mortality experience was only sixty-five
per cent of the expected, and its economy of management is proverbial. The company
values its assets on the market basis at the close of each year and its accounting fulfills
the utmost test of solvency and condition. Its policy is the last word in conservative yet
progressive life insurance construction and offers a logical, consistent and conservative life
insurance service, which is primary. It possesses an unexcelled asset and insurance com-
position. Its service to policy holders is scientific, prompt and complete, based absolutely
upon a mutual and equitable practice. Its low mortality, high interest earnings and economy
of management insure low net costs.

Ratio of General Surplus to
1 . Insurance and Annuity Reserves

Year Dividends Paid Dec. 31

191 1 $ 878,870.78 5-17%

1912 1,038,802.66 5-20%

1913 1,035,168.69 S-SJ^

1914 1,223,242.49 6.12%

1915 1,324,246.86 7-21%

The total net surplus earnings in 191 5 have been so apportioned to the payment of divi-
dends in 1916 and to increase the general surplus as to provide for an adequate distribution
of dividends to policy holders and an ample reservation for the future maintenance of the
dividend scale and the ratio of surplus to reserves.


Otto B. Rupp, of Seattle, Washington, is the eldest son of Bernhard H. Rupp and
Sarah Elizabeth Rupp, nee Hinman. He was born in Adrian, Michigan, October 6, 1877.
He came to Walla Walla with his parents in 1892, and graduated from Whitman College
in 1898. He was admitted to the bar in 1903, was elected prosecuting attorney of Walla
Walla county in 1906 and moved to Seattle in 1909. He is a member of the Seattle Bar
Association, King County Bar Association, Washington State Bar Association and Ameri-
can Bar Association.

In 1914 he received a degree of Master of Arts from Whitman College. He was mar-
ried on the 17th day of August, 1910. to Miss Edith Cornelia Norris, of Tacoma, and
they now have three children, Jane, John and Betty.

Mr.. Rupp is a member of the republican party, and though loyal to the interests of
the party is yet without aspiration to ofiice.


Harry T. Bostian, engineer in charge of the Commercial Waterway, has been active in
promoting a project of almost limitless value to citizens of Seattle and this section of the
country. Previous experience and training well qualified him for tlie position which he now
fills, a position which establishes him as one of the foremost representatives of his profession
in the northwest. He is a native of Pennsylvania, born near Milton. October 7, 1863, and a
son of Peter Bostian. The father came to Washington in 1882 and settled on Orcas island,
in San Juan county, where he engaged in farming for many years. While there residing
he served as county commissioner and was a man of considerable local influence. He died
in the year 1912.


Harry T. Bostian attended public schools in his native town until 1877, when the family
removed to McKinney, Texas, where they remained, however, for only three months.
They then went to Morris county, Kansas, where Harry T. Bostian continued his education,
alternating his attendance at school with work upon his father's farm during vacation
periods until 1S82. In that year the family settled on Orcas island in Washington and,
starting out in the business world, Harry T. Bostian was employed for three years in various
sawmills around Puget Sound. While thus engaged he pursued a correspondence course in
civil engineering, gaining comprehensive and accurate knowledge of the profession. He
then came to Seattle and entered the employ of the Lake Shore & Eastern Railroad Com-
pany as level rodman and later as transit man. He remained in that position until 1886,
when he resigned and became transit man for the firm of Thompson & White, civil engi-
neers, with whom he continued until 1892. He ne.xt became city engineer of Ballard, which
position he filled for five years and on the expiration of that period he became city engineer
of Georgetown, occupying the position for five years. He next entered upon the private prac-
tice of civil engineering, in which he continued until 1910, when he was appointed assistant
engineer of the Commercial Waterway District No. i, and three years later he was advanced
to the position of engineer in charge. The commissioners of the district were Fred W.
Newell, Dietrich Hamm and Frank Paul but Max G. Schmidt later took Mr. Paul's place.
John B, Shorett of the firm of Shorett, McLaren & Shorctt is attorney. It was some years
before Seattle or any of its citizens came to realize what an important and valuable asset the
city had in the Duwamish river, but at length attention was turned in that direction with the
result that the Duwamish Waterway has been developed and thus has come to realization a
dream that was entertained by residents of the valley for years, for the opening of the water-
way makes this portion of Seattle the center for the greater part of the city's industries.
Writing of the project, the Duwamish Valley News said: "Many were the anxious hours for
the men back of this project, through the legal entanglements reciuired before the assessment
district became a unit for the construction of the huge waterway. The right-of-way has
long since been condemned, and is paid for, and all the thousand and one complications and
difficulties have been surmounted. Today these men are witnessing the fruition of their
hopes and plans, in so far as preparation for a prosperous future is concerned. When the
Panama Canal opens and gives the hoped for impetus to commerce and industry, the
Duwamish Valley will be ready and waiting for its share of the business, and in the mean-
while going after its share with assurance founded on facts and values.

"The waterway district assessed for this improvement, comprises approximately eleven
thousand acres. Of this amount about seven thousand acres are the rich level lowlands
especially adapted to the location of large manufacturing plants. The waterway will traverse
this level valley to the westward of the center, and for a distance of four and a quarter
miles, while by the old river channel the distance between the same points was eleven and
a quarter miles. All the trans-continental railroad lines entering Seattle parallel this
watercourse to the eastward. Thus the valley will have both rail and water facilities to aid
in the development of large manufactories.

"When completed, the waterway will form a tidal canal opening into the East and West
Waterways. Its immense advantage over the Lake Washington project may be seen from
the fact that there will be no locks, and but few bridges to obstruct navigation, while the
fresh water and depth and ease of entering and leaving are here present too. The water-
way will be sixteen feet deep at extreme low tide and thirty feet deep at mean high tide,
sufficient for navigation by most of the coast-wise vessels now entering Elliott Bay. The
width on the surface will be three hundred feet, and large and deep turning basins will be
provided at convenient points. The docks will be almost as easily reached and will be
fully as accessible as those on the city's waterfront, while the Duwamish will hold this
immense advantage over the Lake Washington project, that it is miles nearer Elliott Bay, and
it will be a matter of but a few minutes to reacli the bay from any point on it.

"In securing the right-of-way for the waterway, it was necessary to condemn or secure a
strip five hundred feet in width. A county bond issue of six hundred thousand dollars has
been applied to the purchase, the total amount of which was approximately seven hundred
thousand dollars. The balance of this is being met by assessment, and the sale of earth.

"The waterway commissioners authorized nine hundred thousand dollars in si.x per cent.


ten year bonds, which have been successfully floated. The entire issue was taken up by
local institutions. The bonds net the district par and accrued interest. The fact that they
were at once taken up by local institutions is proof in itself that the far-seeing business men
behind those companies recognize the immense advantages to accrue to Seattle through
this waterway.

"As soon as the bond issue was floated, bids were called for the construction of a
twenty-four inch suction dredge and contracts awarded. Most of the parts for this dredge
were manufactured in Seattle plants, and assembled at the plant of the Drummond Light-
erage Company at the mouth of the West Waterway. The big dredge is the property of
the waterway district and cost one hundred and sixty-three thousand dollars, and, after
the waterway itself is dredged, it may be used to excavate slips, and keep clear the required
depth of water. It is estimated that the amount of earth necessary to be moved will
approximate seven million cubic yards."

In October, 1889, in Seattle, Mr. Bostian was united in marriage to Miss Genevieve
Mathewson. They have one son, Howard, who was born in 1892 and is a piano graduate
of the University of South Dakota at Vermillion. Mr. Bostian belongs to the Commercial
Club and his fraternal relations are with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the
Knights of Pythias, the Woodmen of the World and the Benevolent Protective Order of
Elks. In politics he is a stanch republican. There are no esoteric phases in his career,
his advancement having come through close application to every task which he has under-
taken. Working his way steadily upward along well defined lines of progress, he is now
occupying a position of large responsibility.


For a number of years Livingston J. Bissell has been identified with the lumber trade
and is now the secretary and manager of the Newell Mill & Lumber Company of Seattle.
He has operated at different points on the Pacific coast and there is no phase of the lumber
business with which he is not familiar, while his executive ability well qualifies him for
the conduct of successful individual interests along this line. He was born in Le Roy, New
York, July 25, 1882, a son of D. J. and Hepzibeth (Dix) Bissell, the latter an own cousin of ex-
Governor John A. Dix of New York. His paternal grandfather. General C. F. Bissell, was
born in Greenfield, Massachusetts, May 9, 1818, and was brigadier general of all the New
York state militia troops under Governor Hofifman. By profession he was a lawyer and
for many years practiced in Buffalo and Le Roy, New York, and for an extended period
filled the office of prosecuting attorney of Genesee county. He died on the nth of December,
1899. His son, D. J. Bissell, was born in Le Roy, New York, September 21, 1845, and was
educated at the University of Michigan. Later he practiced law with his father in Le Roy
and at Buffalo, New York, and made substantial progress at the bar. He also served as
president of the board of trustees of institutions for the blind of New York under Governor
R. P. Flower from 1898 until 1902. In the latter year he removed to Spokane, Washington,
where he has since made his home, living retired throughout the entire period of his con-
nection with the Pacific northwest. He was a cousin of Wilson S. Bissell, who served as
postmaster general during the presidency of Grover Cleveland.

Livingston J. Bissell attended public and high schools in Le Roy, New York, and after-
ward became a student in the State Normal School at Geneseo, New York, which he
attended until he reached the age of nineteen years. He then entered business life as a
traveling salesman for the Geneseo Pure Food Company of Le Roy, New York, but after
a year he resigned and came to Washington, settling at Spokane. There he engaged with
the Washington Mill Company and in that connection thoroughly learned the lumber busi-
ness, winning promotion until he reached the position of manager, in which capacity he
served for three years. He was afterward made superintendent of the sawmill at Ramsey,
Idaho, where he continued for a year and he then went to North Yakima, Washington,
where he engaged as manager of the Cascade Lumber Company. A year later he made his
way to San Francisco and occupied the position of shipping clerk with a lumber company


for six months. On the expiration of that period he came to Seattle and was employed in
connection with the lumber department of the Moran Brothers shipyards until 1907, when
he resigned and purchased an interest in the Pacific Door & Manufacturing Company, of
which he became the secretary and manager, .\fter three years spent in that connection
he sold out and bought a half interest in the Xewell Mill & Lumber Company, of which he
is the secretary and manager.

On the 24th of March, 1906, in Seattle, Mr. Bissell was united in marriage to Miss
Myrtle G. Phillips. In politics he is a democrat. He belongs to the Hoo Hoos, an organi-
zation of lumbermen, and fraternally he is- connected with the Masons, belonging to both
tlie York and Scottish Rites and the Mystic Shrine. His entire business career has been
marked by steady progress and he may well be proud of the fact that he is a self-made
man, for such a record indicates strength of character and business ability. He started at
the bottom round of the ladder and has climbed to success. Today he is regarded as a
torceful and resourceful man in commercial circles, re^dy to meet any emergency, his
training and experience qualifying him for anything that may come. He has based his
success upon the rules which govern strict and unswerving integrity and indefatigable
energy and his course may well serve as an example as well as a source of inspiration to


Henry R. Rustad conducting business at Seattle, as a plumbing and heating contractor
at Xo. 315 Second avenue South, came to Washington in March, 1888, first settling at
Spokane, but on the 4th day of July of the same year he arrived in Seattle, where he has
since made his home. Here he entered upon his present line of business and has remained
therein continuously, his original plumbing establishment being located on the present site
of the Frye Hotel. He lias conducted an extensive business in his line, becoming one of the
prominent plumbing and heating contractors of the city. He thoroughly understands every
phase of the trade from the practical workmanship to the management of the business and
his efforts have been crowned with a gratifying measure of success.


William D. Tatton, member of the Seattle bar. was born in New London, New York,
October 17, 1858, a son of Joseph Tatton, who was likewise a native of the Empire state,
where he followed the occupation of farming for many years. In 1877, however, he removed
westward to Michigan, where he continued to engage in farming. He was a son of Joseph
Tatton, also a native of New York, and a grandson of Jacob Tatton, who served as one of
the private soldiers from New York in the Revolutionary war. Joseph Tatton, father of
William D. Tatton, lived to the ripe old age of ninety years, passing away in Michigan.
His wife, who was in her maidenhood a Miss Morrell, was a native of New England, repre-
senting a family who ever maintained the highest standards of morality and who occupied
a social position of distinction. In the family of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Tatton were two
sons and three daughters, all of whom yet survive.

William D, Tatton, the eldest, began his education in the public schools of New Y'ork
and continued it in the public schools of Michigan, and after his more specifically literary
studies were completed he entered upon the study of law, which he followed in Kalkaska and
Grand Rapids. He acted as clerk in a law office, which gave him valuable practical experi-
ence, and on the 14th of September, 1880, he was admitted to the bar in Kalkaska, where he
remained in the practice of law for some time, entering upon the active work of the pro-
fession when twenty-two years of age. He served for two terms as prosecuting attorney
and also occupied the position of assistant prosecuting attorney for several years. Still
higher official lionors were accorded him, however, for in 1900 he was elected to represent
his district in the state legislature. Removing to Detroit, he there engaged in the practice of
Vol. Ill— 50


law for several years and he was attorney for the Grand Rapids & Indiana Railroad Com-
pany for seventeen years.

During vacation periods Mr. Tatton made several trips to the Sound country and was
so pleased with the climate, the people and the opportunities of the country that he decided
to locate in the northwest, arriving in Seattle on the 1st of December, 1904, since which
time he has been continuously engaged in the practice of his profession in this city. He
filled the office of United States commissioner from January i, 1910, until January I, 1914.

Mr. Tatton was married on the ist of January, 1885, in Michigan to Miss Edith
Phelps, a daughter of Samuel B. Phelps, a farmer who belonged to one of the oldest
families of New England. To this marriage have been born six children : Joseph Phelps,
twenty-eight years of age who is a graduate of the Washington University of the class
of 1910 and is now a law partner of his father; Samuel, twenty-four years of age, a
theatrical manager; William, a student in the law department of the State University;
Mabel, twenty years of age, also attending the University ; Mortimer, aged eighteen, a
high school pupil of Seattle; and Morrell, sixteen years of age, also attending the public

Mr. Tatton is a stanch republican in politics and in a quiet way has worked for the inter-
ests and success of the party but has never sought office. While a believer in the Chris-
tian religion, he has never affiliated with any church. He belongs, however, to the
Masonic fraternity, in which he has attained the Knights Templar degree. His residence
in Seattle dates from 1904 and during the entire period he has cooperated in movements
for the upbuilding and improvement of the city. At the same time he has closely applied
himself to his practice and his devotion to his clients' interests has become proverbial.


Many years ago Maine was known as the Pine Tree state because of its vast forests,
which became the center of the timber industry, but its forests have largely been cut down
and people have turned to other sections of the country for the source of their timber sup-
ply. The business is now largely from the northwest and among the representatives of the
trade in Seattle is Francis Eugene Scott, well known for his extensive operations in tim-
ber, his name being associated with some of the most important business transactions of this
character. He is a native of the old Pine Tree state, his birth having occurred in Lincoln

Online LibraryClarence BagleyHistory of Seattle from the earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 3) → online text (page 139 of 142)