Category Archives: Seattle Confidential

THANKS For The Memories Cont . . . Bob Hope in Seattle, 1962

From July 9 thru 15 Bob Hope delivered his $100,000 show at the Aqua Theatre on Green Lake before near capacity crowds – first night 5,478 seats of the 5600 capacity.   The Crosby brothers had to cancel (we can imagine the skit) but the show moved along fine (the reviewers noted) with the dancer Juliet Prowse doing “Legs” a dance of hers only through holes in a curtain, folk singer Jimmy Rodgers and the Fairmont Singers, and more than an hour of monologue by Hope.  Almost as popular were the monkeys – the Marquis Chimpanzees, which “could do anything except recite poetry.”  For one song Hope took to a row boat oared by Carol Christensen Hall, a former Seafair Queen.  Earlier, of course, he received the obligatory queen kiss from Linda Juel, Seafair Queen for 1962, the year of Century 21.  And next year Hope was back again for another encounter with the local queen, who in 1963 was Arelene Hinderlie.    Both Juel and Hinderlie are pictured next.  All the images, excepting that from 1963, which comes from the Post-Intelligencer, are used compliments of Seafair.

1962 Seafair Queen, Linda Juel, missing the famous ski-nose.
1963 Seafair Queen, Arelene Hinderlie
Seafair Pirates, the 1962 installment
Hope browsing The Seattle Times Century 21 Special Edition

Seattle Confidential – Game Remnants in a Trailer

The trailer packed with deer and moose parts has a license dated 1942 and is parked on Terrace Street (between 4th and 5th) beside the side door to the old Public Safety Building, which since its restoration in the 1970s has been known as the 400 Yesler Building.   We don’t know that the animal parts are collected as evidence but we assume it given the location.  A different trailer below holds its own gruesome parts and is surrounded by a pack of curious mostly young men.   This trailer is parked on Jackson Street east of 5th Avenue and across the street from the Orpheum Cafe, which was then in the building at the northeast corner of 5th and Jackson.  That lot is now for parking.  Looming in the haze is the 9-story Richmond Hotel at the southeast corner of 4th Avenue and Main Street.

Seattle Confidential – Comments, Instructions & Demands

(Click to Enlarge)  –  If anyone would like to suggest a caption for any of these three, please do.  They are all about thirty years old, and I shot them.  The top one, I don’t know where.  The middle one is at the south side of the Fremont Bridge waiting for the Anchor Excursion boat to pass.  The bottom one is on Eastlake Ave. climbing the hill south of the Steam Plant. pd

Seattle Confidential – Early Maps

A few years back we published this early "found" map of Africa on this blog - or rather the first run of this blog, all of which was lost in one of those ineffable digital snafu's that tests one's virtual composure. Although we lost the insertions we still have the raw materials - when we remember what they were - including this map of what was once commonly referred to as the "dark continent" and actually seemed darker on the window-shade map of the world that was attached at the top of the blackboard in primary school. Now we pull on a few more maps - early ones - beginning with a really primitive map of Washington State, (also found while picking) followed by another state map, also an early one: the map prepared by Washington Territory's first governor, Isaac Stevens in 1855. It is survey map - his assignment from the other Washington.

The mountains - Cascades and Olympics - are mere impressions in this 1855 map, but the waterways are almost faithful. The pioneers, of course kept close to the waterways. Most importantly, Stevens map shows the first efforts of surveying the land into claimable and taxable real estate. That work extends here north out of Oregon and thru what is now the 1-5 north-south corridor of Washington's denser populations.

Above, are three of the earliest maps of Seattle, and at the bottom is its first real estate map, showing the sectioned fruit of the towns 1853 survey, its first additions on which Arthur Denny, Carson Boren and David “Doc.” Maynard expected to sell lots – and did.    The above maps all put east at the top.  The top one dates from the 1841 navy survey of Puget Sound, and includes a peninsula, Piner’s point, which when the tides were high and the wind strong out of the west could become an island.  It covers an area that now extends from about one-half block south of Yesler Way to King Street, and from the Alaskan Way Viaduct (for a while yet) to some little ways east of Occidental Ave.  The tides then also splashed against Beacon Hill.   The middle map above dates from 1854, and is the fruit of another federal survey.  It includes a few marks for buildings, but none yet for blockhouses.  Those troubles came a year later.  The bottom of the three maps dates from the mid-1870s and shows as yet no King Street coal wharf.  That was built in 1877.   The 1870s map also features topo lines.  This last map (of the three) marks Mill Street – later renamed Yesler Way – and that line can help one get oriented with the two earlier maps above it.

Finally, and again, the map below is a rationalization of land as marketable.  And they didn’t even own it.

Seattle Confidential – Gertrude Pacific & Billy King in the Market

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It may be one of the banalities of passing time that moments that are remembered vividly seem more recent than they actually are.   I suspect that these three Pike Place snaps of artists Gertrude Pacific, on the left, and Billy King may be a twenty years past or more, although, again, they seem more recent.  If it were not for the familiarity of the market and the pick-up truck we might imagine this as somewhere in Rome.   I have seen Billy as recently as last summer, for a mutual friend’s memorial, increasingly the kind of event that will put old friends in contact however briefly.  It used to be parties or trips to the ocean or openings. Thankfully, it still is for many.  By now Billy King is more than a tile in market history.  For more than forty years he has sometimes lived there, had studios there, worked there (in a fruit stand, I remember), and recently painted a mural with market subjects near the top of the Pike Street Hill Climb. It is a painting made by command, or popular subscriptions.  I confess that I have not yet visited it, although I have seen it on a poster.  I have not been to the market for many months.  The last time may have been more than a year ago when Jean and I took Steve Sampson to lunch there for his goodbye to join Cynthia Rose in their new home in Paris.  Gertrude I last saw a quarter-century ago – or perhaps this is a record of the last time.  It is time to go to market again – and Paris.  And may I have the good fortune to come upon Gertrude with big hair barely restrained by her knit cap.

Seattle Confidential – Finding Cherry Falls

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It is now about 40 years since Bill Burden and I last visited Cherry Falls on Cherry Creek in the Cascade foothills northeast of Duvall.  It was Larry “Jug” Vanover who first led me to the falls.  Bill, I think, was not along on the first visit.  Without a guide it would have been hard to find even with good written instructions.  There were many splits and turns in the road that wound up at a gate that was sometimes closed and sometimes not.  The last leg required a hike down the overgrown bed of a long abandoned logging railroad to the falls which splashed in a pool that was so shaded that even on the hottest visits the water was bracing.  It was, however, a splendid place for Diana and her stags.   I did some filming there for the Sky River Rock Fire film, which is now also a 40-year work-in-progress.  We visited the pool perhaps a  half dozen times after Vancouver’s first help in the summer of 1968.  He guided us to the falls following that Spring’s Piano Drop, which was staged on Larry’s perfect (for dropping a piano from the sky) property.   Of the piano drop I have both film and stills, but of the falls only film.  The subject attached here is unidentified.  Although it resembles Cherry Falls – as I remember it – I doubt that it is Cherry Falls.  Estimating the height of the man standing on top of the falls to the right, (in this circa 1912 glass negative) these falls might be sixteen or so feet high.  I think Cherry Creek falls is somewhat higher.   In the late 70s Bill Burden and I with an entourage of innocents in two cars tried to find the falls without Larry’s help.  We failed.   Perhaps next summer we will try again, but first call Larry.


Ron Edge – of our “Edge Clippings” – has found a visit to Cherry Falls by a mountaineer who signs his work “Hikin Coug.”  Ron ventures, “I assume a graduate of WAZZU.”  Hikin Coug dates his photo from this year – or rather last year, 2011.   So thanks to Ron and the Hikin Coug, and all the rest on Cherry Falls that is now up and showing on line.  Last time I searched, about six years ago, there were no pictures. While close in qualities the older photo is clearly not of Cherry Falls.  Given the characteristics of the collection it came from it is almost certainly from somewhere nearby.

Seattle Confidential – John George Variations from Dance to Pope & Potatoes

JOHN GEORGE – Variations

[To Enlarge the Clips below, CLICK them.]

Ron Edge – of this blog’s “Edge Clippings” – reminded me that The Seattle Times “key word search” service through the Seattle Public Library website, can also read telephone numbers.   He quickly determined that the “782 – 2442” painted by some semi-pro free hand on the somewhat seedy door in the photograph above was the tel. number for John George’s Studio of Performing Arts at 5412 Ballard Ave. N. W.  (A parking lot now, I believe.)  I have a habit of dating old negatives from my wandering prime as “circa 1970s.”  The sidewalk weed at the front door suggests that the door behind it was not often used.  However, John George was active here from the 1960s into the 1980s.  It is, again, the key-word opportunity that gives us at least a minimal sense of what he was about in this studio.   Predictably, there were many other John Georges, the most prolific made from one/half of the Beatles.   Beyond the Liverpool connection, a racehorse named John George did pretty well at Longacres in the 1970s, and John George Jr. after him in the 1980s.  I also pulled two instructive references to a Salish tribal leader in Vancouver. B.C. named John George.   Read on  – if you will, and CLICK TWICE to enlarge.

This early reference to John George makes special note of his "free dance instruction for underprivileged children." And Oscar Peterson is in town. The date is at the top.

What appears to be the first self-promotion for our dancer John George puts him in the S.Times Pictorail's montage of ads for Performing Arts services, Sunday, Sept. 8 1968. He credits his studio with the work (his work) of the "award-winning Seattle SeaFair Starlighters."
John George subscribes again to the Pictorial montage for Sept. 7, 1969.
For many years Robert Heilman was The Seattle Times natty "Man About Town" dressed like sent from Central Casting. In this June 10, 1973 feature, Heilman compliments George's students for their performance in a variety show at the Seattle Center Playhouse.
George subscribed for a smaller ad in the Pictorials performing arts montage for Sept. 10, 1978, which has also shrunk to half-a-page.
John George has a hand in a benefit for the performing arts in Lynwood. Jan. 28, 1981. This, it seems, is the last citation in The Seattle Times for John George, the dancer/teacher from Radio Music Hall and Ballard.
One example of many - most of them post listings - for the horse John George that raced at Longacres in the 1970s.
Here John George, a Salish tribal leader from Vancouver B.C., interprets a spooked three year old's communications in his bedroom at night with a man that he describes - thru his mother's interpretation - as looking like Daniel Boone. John George is confident that the boy is mistaken. The speaker is not a white mountain man but one of George's ancestors complaining about the desecration of his burial ground by the laughing child and his sometimes messy bedroom. Dec. 23, 1976, dateline Vancouver B.C..
John George (again) greets John Paul with a talking stick during the pope's 1984 visit to Vancouver. With the stick the Prince of the Vatican can safely and with authority speak ex cathedra even on public occasions.

Another John George holds our last clipping.   This time George speaks with the authority of Ore-Idaho Foods Inc, as their head of international export sales.   We learn that the average European eats more potatoes than the average American (although, it occurs to us, that the average American looks more like a potato than the average European.)   America in the fall of 1976 – its bi-centennial – had too many potatoes and was ready to ship and share them with Europe.