Our Daily Sykes #4 – Steptoe Butte

Two of these Sykes’ Steptoes were taken from the top of the Butte, where the road that winds about the Butte reaches it.   Horace Sykes visited Steptoe several times.  Getting to the top was easier after the coiling road was completed in 1946 – if memory serves.   Before that it was switchbacks all the way.   In our book Washington Then and Now Jean and I include one of these Sykes shots from the top and also describe the part Cashup Davis played both below Steptoe were he and his large family serviced stage coaches and on top where he built a Hotel.  It was a Quixotic labor for all water had to be carted to the top and there were not a lot of tourists in the Palouse in the 1890s.  The shaped stones that show in both views from the top are remnants of the hotel’s foundation.  It was also in the late 1940s that my dad drove me up that road.  I was so thrilled that I still own a childish (or childlike) enthusiasm for Steptoe Butte.  [Click the images to enlarge them.]

Road-to-Steptoe-Butte-WEBSteptoe-B-fm-Farm-WEBHS-Steptoe-'classic'-WEB

Foundation stones for Cashup Davis' hotel survive at the top of Steptoe Butte and here directly above the finder of Horace Sykes car.  All these Skykes slides came my way through an old friend by now long passed away, Lawton Gowey.
Foundation stones for Cashup Davis' hotel survive at the top of Steptoe Butte and here directly above the finder of Horace Sykes car. All these Skykes slides came my way through an old friend by now long passed away, Lawton Gowey.

One thought on “Our Daily Sykes #4 – Steptoe Butte”

  1. These are wonderful photos. My awareness of Steptoe Butte comes from the work of Irene’s father, Johsel Namkung, who has several remarkable photos of that area. I’m not sure if any are in the current exhibit of his work at the Seattle Asian Art Museum, but they are in the catalog of his 1977 show at SAM. And they will be in the new book he and Dick Busher are putting together which will collect about 100 or so of the work he likes best.

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