Friday, April 25, 2014

Hotel Sumas and the Howell Family...part 1 of 3

 posted with permission from the collection of Cregan Marmont
I was delighted to receive permission from from Cregan Marmon to share their family's early contribution to the development of Sumas, WA.  in the 1890s.   Above is a picture of the Hotel Sumas which according to Cregan was at the corner of 3rd Street and Cherry street with the hotel  barn across Johnson Creek. It is uncertain on which corner it stood on.  Although, it is believed by the family to have stood on the west side of Cherry Street.  This is an excuse do more research.The Hotel Sumas was more of a boarding house for the railroad workers then a traditional hotel. 
Thomas James Howell was the proprietor of Hotel Sumas and can be seen as the bearded man in the doorway.  His family are lined up to the left of him.  According to the 1900 census he was born in Ireland and  immigrated to the United States in 1872.  Thomas James Howell came to Sumas after losing everything in  the blizzard of 1888, while homesteading in South Dakota.  Thomas  traveled across the country by working for the railroad.  He and his family made their way to Spokane then up to Sumas where they decided to reside and build the hotel.  

Posted with permission from the collection of Cregan Marmont

The photo above shows Ellen Shanahan Howell, wife of Thomas Howell standing in front of the Hotel on the boardwalk.  She was originally from Balbriggan, Ireland.  According the 1900 census she was born around 1842 and immigrated to the United States in 1872.  According to the Washington State Death records, Ellen Howell, the daughter of James Shanahan and Deborah Noonan, died April 3, 1919 in Seattle, WA. 

My next posting will be continuing with further information about this colorful family. They came to Sumas during the town's early growth period and were a vital part of the community.

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