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

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thirteen years of age his father obtained a twenty-one year lease on the Elslack Hall Farm
in Yorkshire of about four hundred acres, so that in his boyhood days Sutcliffe Baxter had
to arise every morning at about five o'clock and assist in milking the cows and doing the
chores, after which he would attend school and return in the evening for the usual routine
of farm work. He tired of all this, however, and when about eighteen or nineteen years
of age began clerking for an uncle who was engaged in the flour, grain and feed business
at Burnlev, with whom he remained for about a year, working for two dollars and a half




SUTCLIFFE BAXTER



tA:Uiii



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HISTORY OF SEATTLE 517

per week and board. He then returned home, where he remained until his twenty-first
year, but still farm life was distasteful to him and he concluded to go to British Columbia,
for the Cariboo gold fields were extensively advertised in England and the report was that
all a young man had to do was to get there, after which he could line his pockets with gold as
rapidly as he could pick it up. In June, 1862, he arrived in British Columbia and immediately
started for the Cariboo. At Fort Yale he purchased a horse and saddle for one hundred
dollars and thereafter continued his journey on horseback until he reached Lytton, fifty-
seven miles from Fort Yale, where he w^as offered one hundred and forty dollars for his
outfit. This he accepted, after which he continued his journey on foot, walking three
hundred miles. Finding that gold was not as easily acquired as he had been led to believe,
he retraced his steps and on arriving at Fort Yale secured a situation with the sappers and
miners who were building the wagon road from Yale to Lytton. Hie wages were sixty
dollars a month, from which amount he had to pay for his own board and lodging. He
remained there for a month and then left for Victoria, but through the winter suffered from
ill health caused by his month's work. The next spring he entered the employ of William
Hood, a California capitalist, as foreman on his contract with the government to build a
section of the wagon road from Spence's Bridge to Clinton. Mr. Hood was the owner of
the Los Guilliers ranch in Sonoma county, California, and he gave Mr. Baxter a letter of
introduction to his family, whom Mr. Baxter visited in the winter of 1863-4, and through
them became acquainted with the family of C. J. Hannath, who was then living in Santa
Rosa, and whose daughter, Harriet, he married in San Francisco in 1869. Returning to
British Columbia in the spring of 1864, he entered the employ of Barnard's Express Company,
engaged in carrying mail from Yale to Cariboo on horseback through the early summer
months and later by a two horse wagon, or stage, as it was called. \Vhen the storms of
winter came, however, he had to make the trip on sn6\v shoes.

In the spring of 1865 Mr. Baxter engaged with Oppenheimer Brothers & Company, then
the leading interior merchants of British Columbia, becoming salesman and bookkeeper at
their Lytton general merchandise store. In early October he joined a government exploruig
party organized to report on the practicability of the upper Columbia river for steamboat
navigation. The trip was by way of Fort Kamloops, the South Thompson river, Shuswap
lake and across the Selkirk mountains to a point on the Columbia some miles below Death
Rapids, where they felled a cedar tree and made a dugout canoe, proceeding up the river
some distance above the rapids to a creek on which they located gold and which they named
Gold creek. By that time winter had set in and they started down the river and through
the Arrow lakes, reaching Fort Shepherd, a trading post of the Hudson's Bay Company, in
December. For two or three weeks they had been on short rations of dried salmon, but at
the fort replenished their supplies, and, buying saddles and packhorses, proceeded up the
Kettle River valley and across the Okanogan river at Osoyoos lake, where they were enter-
tained by a Mr. Law, collector of customs. They proceeded up the Similkameen valley to
Princeton, a trading post at the western base of the Cascade mountains, where they traded
their horses to the Indians for snowshoes and then started across the mountains, on which
the snow lay to a depth of from five to ten feet, arriving at Fort Hope on Christmas Eve.
They proceeded as best they could over ice and snow and reached New Westminster ten
or fifteen days later, where tliey made report of the trip to the government, saying that the
upper Columbia was navigable from Fort Shepherd to Death Rapids.

On arriving at Victoria David Leneveu, a leading merchant there, sent him to take
charge of his Fort Yale business, which he did during 1866 and part of 1867, Later in the
latter year he engaged with two importing houses at Victoria to go to Fort Dunvegan on
Peace river and report on the prospect of collecting an account of fifteen or twenty thousand
dollars extended by them to a band of outlaws doing business at half a dozen stations along
Peace river in opposition to the Hudson's Bay Company. On arriving at Dunvegan he
found a well stocked larder of frozen moose meat and a plentiful supply of vegetables in
the cellar of a very comfortable log house, the vegetables having been grown in a garden
immediately adjacent to the house and directly across the river from the Hudson's Bay
"Fort Dunvegan." Peace river there is two or three hundred yards wide, running through
a fine grazing country, but in November the river freezes over, the ice in midwinter being
three feet thick, and remains frozen until May. The summers, however, are delightful, with



518 HISTORY OF SEATTLE

wild flowers and wild berries, wild service berries being gathered by the ton by the Indians,
dried in the sun and stored away for winter use. The outlaw traders allowed Mr. Baxter
to bring out about enough furs to pay for the goods he had taken in, but the old account
was not and never has been settled. On his return to Victoria he found that the two
importing houses had failed.

During the winter of 1868-9, having tired of the nomadic life and realizing from
experience that "a rolling stone gathers no moss," he concluded to go to California. In
San Francisco he obtained employment in the office of P. B. Cornwall, president of the Black
Diamond and Bellingham Bay Coal Companies of California as coal weigher. In a few
weeks he was made bookkeeper and cashier and after two years' service in the San Fran-
cisco office was sent to Sehome, now the center of the city of Bellingham, as manager of
the company's general mercantile store, the largest north of Seattle at that time, carrying
a stock worth forty thousand dollars. There he remained five years, receiving a liberal salary
with house and fuel furnished free and anything needed by the family supplied at wholesale
cost. While thus engaged Mr. Baxter accepted an appointment from the board of county
commissioners to fill out the unexpired term of C. C. Finkboner. county treasurer, who had
resigned. Mr. Baxter had acquired a local reputation as an experienced accountant and the
financial affairs of the county were in a bad condition, being run on a scrip basis, the scrip
or county warrants being current at about forty cents on the dollar, while acceptable under
the law at par in payment of the countj^ portion of the annual taxes by surrender of any
piece of scrip, principal and interest, amounting to less or at least not more than the propor-
tion of county tax, but when a warrant amounting in principal and interest to ai sum in
excess of said county proportion, it then became the duty of the treasurer to indorse on the
back of such warrant the amount of said county portion of the tax, this indorsement con-
stituting a payment on the amount "so indorsed. This system, duly authorized by the
statutes of Washington territory, was in Mr. Baxter's judgment a barbarous one and
necessitated the introduction of a new system of accounting on the treasurer's part, which
at the earnest request of the county commissioners he undertook to do. He succeeded in
the undertaking and received the thanks and congratulations of the board. The course
won the strong opposition of his democratic opponents, however, who caused three indict-
ments to be returned by the grand jury against Mr. Baxter, one for holding the county
treasurer's office at Sehome instead of Whatcom, where they had some town lots for sale,
and two for buying county warrants for less than their race value. The law provided a
penalty for any county officer who indulged in speculating in county warrants. By this
time, owing to the improved system of accounting, county warrants had become current
at sixty-five cents on the dollar instead of forty cents as before, so that the virtuousi
democrat found himself in the position of having to pay sixty-five cents instead of forty
cents for such warrants as he needed for the payment of taxes. This of course aroused his
indignation so, he induced a gentleman, who at the time was owing a bill to the Bellingham
Ba\f Coal Company, tq oft'er Mr. Baxter a county warrant to be applied to his account,
which he accepted at sixty-five cents on the dollar, and placed the value of it, about seven-
teen dollars, to his credit on the company's books. He also accepted another warrant for a
few dollars from another customer on the company's account and paid him for it in
merchandise at sixty-five cents per dollar. His attorney at Port Townsend wired Mr.
Baxter that he was indicted and advised him to report immediately. He hired a canoe and
Indian crew and proceeded to Port Townsend, where he insisted on prompt trial, which was
ordered by Hon. Orange Jacobs, federal judge. He was tried only on one account and was
acquitted by the jury, while the court, after completely exonerating him, gave the com-
plainants such a lecture as they probably never forgot.

At San Francisco, California, on the 6th of October, 1869, Mr. Baxter married Harriet
Hannath, a daughter of C. J. and Eliza Hannath, natives of Toronto, Canada, and of Eng-
lish parentage. Their children are: Sutclift'e Benjamin, wlio married Pearl Chamberlain;
Laura Emma, who died in 1914; Fred Hudson, who married Kate McGraw, daughter of
ex-Governor J. H. McGraw ; and Olive Eliza, who became the wife of Rollin Sanford,
cashier of the Union Savings & Trust Company of Seattle.

Mr. Baxter has always been a republican in politics from the time that he commenced
to vote, which, imder the territorial law, he could do on taking out his first citizenship



HISTORY OF SEATTLE 519

papers, which were acquired in Seattle in 1871, while the final papers were secured in the
third judicial district court at Port Townsend in 1873. In 1874 Mr. Baxter joined the
Masonic fraternity. He became one of the organizers of the Rainier Club of Seattle and
he has long been widely and prominently known in this city. His history is connected closely
with the development of the northwest and with many pioneer events in British Columbia
and in the state of Washington.



WILLIAM GODFREY.



William Godfrey was actively identified with the business of boiler making in Seattle
and for many years remained a resident of this city, in which he passed away in 1909. He
was then seventy years of age, his birth having occurred in Ireland in 1839. In his boy-
hood, however, he came to the United States and at the beginning of the Civil war re-
sponded to the call of his adopted country for troops, enlisting in the army and later
joining the navy as a member of the crew of the South Carolina. He served all through
the war and at the close of hostilities was honorably discharged.

Mr. Godfrey came to the United States in i860 and in 1866 made his way to Cali-
fornia, while later he spent a year in Honolulu. On leaving the islands he proceeded to
Victoria, British Columbia, and having previously learned the trade of boiler making, in
which he had become an expert workman, he secured the position of foreman of the
Spratt boiler shops, being thus engaged until 1874, when he removed to Seattle. In this
city he established business on his own account, opening a boiler factory on Yesler Way,
where he conducted business for five years. He then sold out and returned to Victoria,
but several years later he again came to Seattle, where he continued active in business
until his demise.

It was in Victoria, in 1874, that Mr. Godfrey wedded Miss Mary Walsh, who was
born in Ireland and crossed the Atlantic in i860, becoming a resident of Vancouver, British
Columbia. Four children were born to this union : William, now in Alaska ; Philip, of
New York; James, also residing in Alaska; and Mary.

Mr. Godfrey was a Catholic in his religious belief and a democrat in his political
views. He belonged to the Pioneers Association and had many friends among the old
residents of the city as well as among more recent arrivals.



WILLIAM J. KILLEN.



William J. Killen is the secretary and treasurer of the Waak-Killen Piano Company,
conducting bvisiness at No. 1516 Third avenue, and in this connection is recognized as
one of the leading young business men of the city. Born in Minnesota on the ist of
October, 1880, he is a son of Joseph C. and Rachel E. (Martell) Killen, natives of New
Brunswick and of Nova Scotia, respectively. The father accompanied his parents to
Minnesota at the early age of two years and the mother of William J. Killen went to
Minneapolis in young womanhood to visit an older brother. Joseph C. Killen engaged
in the furniture business in Seattle after coming to the northwest in 1885 and in the
later years of his life gave his attention to teaming and to the coal trade. He died about
1903, while his wife, surviving for several years, passed away in June, 191 1.

William J. Killen was the second in order of birth in their family of three children.
His early education was obtained in the public schools of Seattle and. working his way
steadily upward, he completed a high school course and later had the benefit of instruc-
tion in a business college in Seattle. He started out in life as an employe of O. B.
Littel, who was engaged in the sash and door manufacturing business, and later he ac-
cepted a position with the Moran Brothers Company in their shipyards, being with them
when they built their first torpedo boat. He was afterward associated for a time with
the law firm of Struve, Allen, Hughes & AIcMicken and in 1897 he became acquainted



520 ■ HISTORY OF SEATTLE

with the piano trade as a representative of the D. S. Johnston Piano Company. His
fourteen years' connection therewith brought him intimate and accurate knowledge of
the piano business and in April, 191 1, he organized the Jones, Rosquist & Killen Company,
establishing a store at No, 1510 Third avenue. In February, 1915, he disposed of his
interest in that business and in October purchased an interest in the Waak-Killen Piano
Company, of which he is now the secretary and treasurer. They have an attractive and
well appointed piano house at No. 1 5 16 Third avenue and are handling only standard
makes of pianos, including the Ivers & Pond, the Hallet & Davis, the P. S. Wick, and a
number of others well known in the trade. They have built up a good patronage in Seattle
and the surrounding country and in their methods take recognition of the fact that sat-
isfied customers are the best advertisement. Their store is tastefully arranged and uni-
form courtesy extended the trade has brought to them a growing and substantial business.
In October, 1907, Mr. Killen was married to Miss Bernice Werneke, a daughter of
William G. and Harriet Werneke, of Harriettsville, Ohio, her father being a prominent
farmer of that community. Mr. and Mrs, Killen have an interesting family of three
sons : Donald, aged seven, now in school ; Robert, aged five ; and Kevin, four years of
age. In politics Mr. Killen is a republican, earnest in his advocacy of party principles.
He came to Seattle on the 6th day of June, 1887, two years before the great fire, and has
since been a witness of the city's development and marvelous growth. Seattle finds in
him a champion whose advocacy of the city is based upon his love therefor and his belief
in its opportunities. He has a wide acquaintance among his fellow townsmen and high
regard is entertained for him by all with whom he has come in contact.



GEORGE LESLIE HILL.



George Leslie Hill, deceased, was for some time connected with the openijig of the
upper Columbia river to navigation as an employe of the government and was also largely
instrumental, by reason of his expert testimony, in bringing about the building of the
Copper River Railroad in Alaska. Thus it is that he took an active part in shaping events
which have had much to do with the history of the northwest, and, accordingly, his name
deserves mention upon the annals of city and state. Moreover, he was a representative of
one of the oldest pioneer families, his birth having occurred November 11, i860, near Ren-
ton, in King county, Washington. His father, John S. Hill, was owner and master of
steamboats in the Puget Sound country and became a well known and prominent figure in
early times. His wife, Mrs. Addie Hill, was a most lovable character, noted for her kindly
acts, her charitable deeds and helpful ministrations in behalf of the sick and the needy.
As a resvilt of all this she had many friends and was greatly respected and loved by those
who knew her best.

Captain George Leslie Hill acquired his education in the . public schools and in the
University of Washington at Seattle. Following in the business footsteps of his father,
he became an expert in the operation and management of steamboats on the waters of Pugct
Sound and Alaska. He was among the first to navigate steamers on the Yukon river from
St. Michaels to Dawson, and made a chart of that great river showing its course and noting
aids to navigation. For several years he operated steamers for the companies engaged in
the transportation business of the Yukon river. He also operated the steamers in the inland
waters of Alaska that were engaged in the transportation of material and supplies in the
building of the Copper River Railroad. The character of the Vvfaters and the rocky forma-
tions that abounded in them rendered their navigation very difficult and well nigh impos-
sible. Many of those who had examined these turlmlent and dangerous waters believed that
they could not be utilized in the building of the Copper River Railroad. Captain Hill was
employed as an expert to make a thorough examination of the case. His report was favor-
able. He said, "with the exercise of great skill and care it can be done." He was employed
to build the steamers that were needed for this work. He took them north in a knocked-
down condition and they were put together on the river and lakes where they were
needed. Captain Hill navigated them safely and successfully and thus saved the




GEORGE L. HILL



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HISTORY OF SEATTLE 523

construction company many thousands of dollars. It is doubtful if this great road would
have been built without the use of this river, and it is also doubtful if any other man could
have been found in the United States that could have rendered equally efficient service
Captain Hill was in the employ of this company for five years, during which time the road
was built Captain Hill was also for some time in the employ of the United States govern-
ment in the opening of the upper Columbia river to navigation, and thus his life work was
of far-reaching effect, benefit and importance. t-,- , .1 ^ i,f..

On the l6th of June, 1888, in Seattle, Captain Hill was married to Elizabeth daughter
of Rev Albert and Amanda J. Atwood. Fraternally he was connected with the Benevo ent
Protective Order of Elks, but throughout his entire life practically his undivided attention
was given to his professional duties, and in that connection he won prominence and dis-
tinction.

MRS. ELIZABETH HILL.

Mrs Elizabeth Hill, residing in Seattle, the widow of Captain George Leslie Hill, of
whom mention is made above, was born at Tom's River New_ Jersey^ Her ^ther, the
Rev. Albert Atwood, was born October 27, 1832, m the vicmity of Tuckerton, New
Jersey, and pursued his education in the CharlotteviUe Seminary at CharlotteviUe, Schohar e
county. New York, there preparing for the ministry, for he had decided to devote his life
to preaching the gospel. In 1858 he joined the New Jersey conference o tne Methodist
Episcopal church and was called to the pastorate of several different churches in that con-
ference In 1874 he was transferred to the Oregon conference and assisted m the organiza-
tion of the Puget Sound conference in 1884. He occupied various pastorates and a so
acted as presiding elder in that conference for several years and his labors were of tar-
ectii^ eTect and benefit, proving an influencing forcefor good in the lives °f — who
came under his teachings. He was an earnest and ofttimes eloquent speaker and the logic
Tf his Tetsoning appealed to the minds of his hearers and he also wielded -A-" ^ - ^f^
the use of sentiment and persuasion. Rev. Atwood married Miss Amanda J. R°b n =0"' ^^^o
was born near Tom's River, New Jersey, March 3.. .841, their wedding being celebrated on

*^ ^ittdaTghfe? Elizabeth Atwood, was a little maiden of four summers when brought
by hr parents' to the northwest. She attended the public schools of Seattle -^ ^f™^
became a pupil in the University of Washington located in this city. Here in ear y woman-
hood she was married, becoming the wife of George Leslie Hill on the '^ '- - ' «
when seventeen years of age. She is a member of the Protestant Episcopal church and her
life has been filled with good deeds and characterized by kindly purpose.



EDGAR S. HADLEY.



Edgar S Hadley, attorney at law of Seattle, with offices in the Pioneer building, has
been 'representative' of the bar of this city since November :, 1902. He had n-st co-
pleted his law course and resolved to make the northwest the scene of his '"'t'^l ^^^or
aW professional lines. He was born at Danville, Hendricks county. Indiana, September
2 r874 a son of William C. and Jane Hadley, natives of North Carolina and Virginia
respectively and among the pioneer settlers of Hendricks county, Indiana.

Reared in the state of his nativity, Edgar S. Hadley supplemented a public school
educSnb; the study of law in the University of Indianapolis at Indianapolis, Indiana
nd won h's LL. B. legree upon graduation with the class "^^ '^'^.^ "^^^ 7/~ta„
had engaged in teaching school in his native state and also filled the office of assistant
county surveyor The lure of the west was upon him and, leaving Indiana, he came o
Seattle where on the ist of November, 1902, he began the practice of his pro ession as
f member of r firm of Smith & Hadley, with offices at No. 321 Pacific bui ding. In
^go'Teoined Richard Winsor in a partnership under the firm style of Wmsor & Hadley,



524 ■ HISTORY OF SEATTLE

continuing in this association for two years, but since 1906 has been alone in the Pioneer
building. He has been accorded a liberal patronage and it is well known that he prepares
his cases with thoroughness and in the courts is ready to meet every point of attack and
at the same time show up the weak points of his opponent's argument.

On the 25th of November, igo8, at Portland, Oregon, Mr. Hadley was married to
Miss Beatrice I. Landess, a daughter of George W. and Amanda Landess, residents of
Carlton, Yamhill county, Oregon. Both were natives of that state. The maternal grand-
parents of Mrs. Hadlej', James E. and Margaret Fenton, crossed the plains over the old
Oregon trail in 1849, while John and Mary Landess, the paternal grandparents, went to
Oregon prior to 1849. All were among the pioneer residents of Yamhill and Washington
counties in that state. Mr. and Mrs. Hadley have one son, William George. Since coming
to the northwest Mr. Hadley has been identified with the National Guard. He enlisted
as a private in Company L, Second Infantrj^ on the 10th of March, 1905, was commis-
sioned second lieutenant in February, 1907, and captain in November, 1909. He was
afterward assigned to the command of Company L, Second Infantry, and still holds that
commission. He was appointed a member of the board of military auditors by Adjutant
General George B. Lamping and again appointed by Adjutant General Fred Llewellyn, still
holding that position. His political allegiance is given the republican party at the polls



Online LibraryClarence BagleyHistory of Seattle from the earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 3) → online text (page 62 of 142)