Thursday, December 18, 2014

Christmas at Sumas 2 of 2

Celebrating Christmas in Sumas through the vintage ads and articles of Everson News.
 
Picture 1
Everson News, 21 December, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection
 
 Picture 2
 An article regarding how the holidays boosted the overall flow of mail at the Sumas Post Office.  An interesting statement considering how busy the post office is today. 
Everson News, Dec. 21, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection.
 

 

Picture 3
 Everson News, Dec. 21, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Pattison collection
 
 
Picture  4
Everson News, Dec. 21, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection.
 
 
Picture 5
Everson News, Dec. 21, 1961
posted with Permission from the Charlie Patterson collection.
 
Picture 6
The smiling faces of the Bank of Sumas!
Everson News, Dec. 21, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection
 
 
Picture 7

Everson News, Dec. 21, 1961
Posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson Collection
 
Picture 8
Everson News, Dec. 21, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection
 

Picture 9


Scouts selling Christmas Trees
Everson News, Dec. 14, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection
 
Picture 10
Everson News, Dec. 21, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection.
 
Picture 11
Everson News, Dec. 21, 1961
posted from the Charlie Patterson collection
 


Tomorrow we will look back to the 1930's holiday activities of the Sumas ladies group, 'the Double A Club'.  Thanks for visiting.  See you then.


Sunday, December 14, 2014

Christmas in Sumas 1 of 2

This is a great time of year to remember one of the traditions familiar to local folk,
'Christmas in Sumas'...
 
picture 1

The iconic Welcome to Sumas sign, turned into a holiday hello for those entering our city, driving north on State Highway 9 where it turns into Cherry street near the Sumas Rodeo Grounds.
Photo taken by Deborah Morgan, 6 December, 2014
 
 
This is a great time of year to remember one of the traditions familiar to local folk,...Christmas in Sumas!  In my childhood years, growing up in the early 60's, it was a great delight to go to the Grange Hall on the SE corner of Cherry and First Streets, (the building was later converted into the Lone Jack Saloon and is now a shipping company, 'Ship Happens'), where the yearly Santa visit was a great source of excitement and fun for all of us children!  I remember we would first get to sit on the floor and be entertained by cartoon movies shown with a projector.  After the movies, Santa Clause himself would arrive and all the children would line up and get a paper bag of treats with assorted candies and an orange in it.  What fun!
 
picture 2
Santa Clause at the Sumas Grange Hall.
article in the Everson News, 21 December, 1961.
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection.
 
 
Today the tradition continues but has evolved.  Santa Claus stills visit the children of Sumas but with the help of the Sumas Volunteer Fire Department (Whatcom Fire District #14).  The Lions Club sponsors "Christmas in the Park" in which families gather at the utility building in the City Park along Johnson Creek in between Cherry Street and Sumas Street.  The festivities consist of hot apple cider being served, Christmas music being played.  In all types of weather (usually COLD!)  the children wait with great enthusiasm for Santa Clause to arrive in the fire engine with the siren blaring!  Santa then gets out of the fire engine and plugs in the cords to light up the Christmas tree to the cheer of the crowd. 
 
 
picture 3
Fire engine leaving the Sumas Fire Station (on Columbia Street)
 with Santa Claus headed to the City Park.
Photograph taken by Deborah Morgan, 1 December, 2014.

 picture 4
Volunteer Fire Fighters Jessie Hoffman (left) and Will Morgan (right) of Whatcom Fire District 14 patiently waiting for Santa Claus as he visits the Children of Sumas.
looking SW on 3rd Street, photograph taken by Deborah Morgan, 1 December, 2014

picture 5


Sumas Mayor (and Lions Club member) Bob Bromley and Santa Claus (Terry Bronkema)
Photograph taken by Deborah Morgan, 1 December, 2014.
 
Vintage local holiday newspaper ads from days gone by.
 picture 6
Everson News, 30 November, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection
 
picture 7
Everson News, 30 November, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection
 
Picture 8
Time to go to Everson to buy a new car!
Everson News, 14 December, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection

picture 9

Everson News, 14 December, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection

Picture 10
Everson News, 14 December, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection
 
picture 11
 Everson News, 14 December, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection
 
picture 12
Everson News, 14 December, 1961
posted with permission from the Charlie Patterson collection
 
Stay tuned for my next posting featuring more of 'Christmas in Sumas'!
 
 


Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Lumber Industry - Miller and Sons Shingle Mill - Members of the community Part 3 of 3

Clarence Leonidas Miller (owner of the Miller and Sons Shingle Mill) and his family were respected and active in civic activities in both Van Buren, WA and then later, Sumas.  Clarence L. was on the Van Buren City Council from 1920 through 1934.  As mentioned in my posting , Sumas Roundup "See 'Em Buck, part 13 of 14 (Sept 14, 2014) - promoting the roundup" he was also one of the officers of the Sumas Roundup Association. 


Around 1918 Clarence L. Miller built a house (see the pink arrow) on the SE corner of Cherry and Vancouver here in Sumas.  It allowed him an easy walk to the mill only 4 blocks away to the SW.

picture 1 
June 4, 1932 Revision of the 1914 Sandborn Fire Insurance Map (portion)
posted with permission from the City of Sumas
The penciled notation above the pink arrow was made to this map in 1932, identifying the yellow structures as belonging to C. L. Miller.  The Miller home was moved from this location long after the Miller family had left the community being replaced by a Texaco gas station that was later operated as a retail dairy operation by Breckinridge Dairy. Today, Edaleen Dairy of Lynden owns and operates the property.
 
picture 2
The original Miller house today on the south side of Mitchell Street, just E of the Sumas Elementary School athletic field.  View looking SE toward Mt. Baker.
photograph taken by Deborah Morgan, 29 November, 2014
 
According to his obituary, Clarence L. Miller was a lightweight contender in the Van Buren, WA Wrestling Club in 1909.   As seen in the picture below he was a dashing athlete.

picture 3
Clarence Leonidas 'Leo' Miller as a wrestler circa 1909.
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
 picture 4
A license obtained by Jack Grinder and Clarence L. 'Leo' Miller to operate a wrestling match in Sumas, WA,  December 4th - 5th, 1909.
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
picture 5 
article from the Bellingham Herald,  3 September, 1927
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
A tongue in cheek humorist article written about Clarence Leonidas 'Leo' Miller and his fondness for boxing. At this time Clarence was Vice-President of the Sumas Roundup Association.  The boy with him in the picture is believed to be his son, Clarence Leon Miller, posing as his dad's manager.  


The following pictures are focused on Clarence Miller's wife, Johanna.  According to Mrs. Josephine Fadden, a longtime Sumas resident who knew Johanna, "...she was a stylish, petite lady with her hair always done up in an elaborate hairdo.  Johanna would bring the accounting business to the bank where I would deal with the transactions."  (pers. comm. 3 Dec, 2014)
 
picture 6
 
according to the clipping (circa 1931-1932), Johanna (#1) was involved with the Sumas P.T.A. as President.
undated clipping from unident. newspaper
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection

picture 7 
Officers of the P.T.A. for 1931 - 1932
Left to Right:  Mrs. L. Miller,  Mrs. Joe Ellsbree, Mrs. Frank Koehler, Mrs. Roy Hagin
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
 
 
During the evening of 11 October, 1923 a group of 12 talented local ladies gathered in the home of Naomi Nugen here in Sumas and decided to form a club.  Johanna Miller was among the original 12 founders.   She served as a Treasurer for the organization from 1923-1930.  It took three meetings for the ladies to decide on a name and purpose for their organization. 
The meeting of 13 November, 1923 was held in the Miller's home (see picture 3).  That night they voted on and chose the name of their organization, the 'Double A Club'.  The club was devoted to the cultural arts.  There was recitations, music and drama.  The Double A Club continued (as documented in their extensive written records) until the last members disbanded the club 30 August, 1992.
 
Below are the minutes from the November 13th meeting held at the Miller home on Cherry Street, Sumas
picture 8
 
Minutes from the November 13th meeting held at the Miller home on Cherry Street, Sumas 
"The regular Tuesday Evening Nov 13 meeting of this club-still without a name-was held at the house of Mrs. Miller, with the Pres in the chair and Mrs. Cottrell acting as Secretary.  Eleven members are present.  Such of the minutes of the last meeting as wouud be made out were read and afterword consideration, accepted.
The question of the naming of the club was taken up; The names given at the last meeting being re-read, it was moved and seconded that a name be chosen from the them.  The name Amateur Amusers was chosen, to be commonly known as the Double A Club"  Text continued on picture 9
posted from the Morgan family collection
 
picture 9
 
"The following program committee was appointed for Nov 27: Mrs. Johnson, Mrs. Lochbaum, Mrs. McGrath.-and for the next meeting Mrs. Lambert, Mrs. Miller and Mrs. Tudor.  The President made the suggestion that we give a Christmas program for the old people.  After considerable discussion it was decided to do so on the Sunday afternoon preceeding Xmas.  The following committee to have charge of the program; Mrs. Nugen, Mrs. Johnson, Mrs. McGrath, Mrs. Tudor, Mrs. Lochbaum and Mrs. Miller were appointed a committee to make out a list of people to have special invitations. 
The following program was then..."  Text continued on picture 10
posted from the Morgan family collection
 
picture 10
 

 "...given.
Trio     Dutch Dolls,
Mrs. Hicks, Mrs. Lambert, Mrs. Washburn
Readings from a Far Country
Afterwhile by Riley
Mrs. Johnson
Solo- A Dream - Bartlett
(?) Sing the Old Songs
Mrs. Lochbaum
 Piano Solos   Love and Devotion
Mrs. Miller
 After a social half hour over cake and tea the meeting adjourned
 Nell B. Cotrell, Secretary."
posted from the Morgan family collection




 picture 11

Officers of the Double A club for 1928-1929.
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
picture 12
left to right:  Mrs. Miller, Mrs. C.C. Cottrell, Mrs. R.C. Tudor, Mr. D.R. Nugen
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
---The Miller's leave Sumas---
 Sadly all good things must end.  The Miller's and Sons Shingle Mill had to follow where the lumber was available.  As the Sumas area became logged out it became necessary for the different mills to move. The Miller family rented their house out and moved to Glacier circa 1940 according to Mrs. Josephine Fadden. (pers. comm. 3 Dec, 2014) .  They went into business in the Glacier area, renting cabins and milling logs.
the Miller Mill at Glacier, WA.
Photograph taken by Mr. J. Linn, (circa 1960) 
posted from the J. Linn collection
 
 another view of the Miller Mill at Glacier, WA.
Photograph taken by Mr. J. Linn, (circa 1960) 
posted from the J. Linn collection
 
The Miller & Sons Shingle Mill in Sumas was physically gone by World War II.
Records of its operation are now stored in the archives at the Center of Pacific Northwest Studies at Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA.
 
  Clarence Leonidas died May 8, 1964 at a hospital in Sedro Wooley, WA.  His wife, Johanna died October 1979.  They are both buried in the historic Bayview Cemetery in Bellingham, WA. 
They were indeed an important early family of Sumas and help shaped our town into what it is now.
 
 The holiday season is upon us!  My next posting will be discussing Christmas in Sumas!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Friday, November 21, 2014

The lumber industry - Miller and Sons Shingle Mill. part 2 of 3.

Mr. Mike Miller has very generously shared a wealth of photographs and information of his grandfather's business, Miller and Sons Shingle Mill from the early days of Sumas. 

According to Mr. Miller, his grandfather Clarence Leonidas Miller and his Great Uncle Percy, moved from Iowa to Port Angeles, WA in 1889 where their father, Michael Hagar Miller was working at a mill (possibly as the owner).  In 1900, the brothers relocated to Bellingham and attended Western Washington Normal School with their sisters. Michael Hagar also moved to Whatcom County, working at the Washington Shingle Company.

In 1905, Michael Hagar Miller purchased the Hastings Mill at Van Buren, WA.  This facility became the original Miller and Sons Shingle Mill.  The Van Buren townsite has now reverted to farmland but was approx. halfway between Everson, WA and Sumas (3 miles SW of Sumas) on what is now Van Buren Road.
Picture 1
 The original Miller and Sons Mill at Van Buren, WA
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection

Picture 2
Detail from picture 1 
 The young man seated on the left is Clarence Leonidas Miller and Percy Miller is standing. 
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection.
 
In 1906, Michael Hagar Miller's wife Louisa died and in 1908 he also died leaving the boys the mill at Van Buren.   In 1918 Clarence and Percy bought the Cline Mill in Sumas renaming it the Miller and Sons Shingle Mill (see my previous post http://nooksackvalleynostalgia.blogspot.com/2014/11/millers-and-sons-shingle-mill.html.) 
 
Picture 3
It appears from the letterhead in picture 3 that Percy managed the Van Buren mill and
Clarence Leonidas managed the Sumas mill. 
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
Picture 4
 
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
 
 
picture 5
Posted with permission from the M. Miller collection.
 
picture 6
 
 picture 6 shows the mill at Sumas, WA.  Notice the mill owner Clarence Leonidas Miller's son Clarence Leon (M. Miller's father), on the top of the shingle pile
Posted with permission from the M. Miller collection.

picture 7
Another picture of Clarence Leon with an unident. lady at the Sumas mill.
Posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
 

 picture 8

This a picture of Clarence Leon Miller (b. 23 Dec, 1921 - d. 30 Jan. 2008) son of Clarence Leonidas and Johanna Miller, in front of the mill in Sumas. 
Posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
 picture 9
Miller and Sons Shingle Mill was the proud owner of some of the first Duplex 4 trucks. 
'Duplex manufactured one of the early 4 x 4 trucks starting in 1916 until they switched over to making fire engines.  The Duplex manufacturing company was originally located in Charlotte, Michigan.  In 1955, the company was bought out by the Warner and Swasey Company and continued production till 1975. (Michigan State univ. archive and hist. collection) 
In the above picture, the driver of the lead truck was Cliff Howe.  The driver of the rear truck was Glen Vail. (written on the picture back).  Picture 9 was taken in August of 1925.
posted with permission from the M.Miller collection
 
 
picture 10
posted with permission from the collection of M.Miller
 
 
 
 
picture 11
The Miller and Sons Shingle Mill trucks hard at work in the field.   Notice the dog laying in the shade between them.
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
 picture 12
driver Cliff Howe with the mill owner's son, Clarence Leon standing on the front tire (August, 1925).
posted with permission from the M. Miller collection
 
picture 13

driver Glenn Vail with the mill owners son, Clarence Leon standing on the engine cover (August 1925) next to the Mill in Sumas (Johnson Creek).
 
 
According to M. Miller,  during the early 1920s Clarence Leonidas and Percy Miller had a falling out over finances.  The brothers went their own directions and supposedly never spoke to each other again.  Percy ended up in Granite Falls and the mill he founded there is still in operation
and is believed to be the largest supplier of cedar shakes and shingles in the nation.

My next post will be the third and final instalment regarding Miller and Sons and will continue the larger thread covering the lumber industry here in sunny Sumas!  See you then...