Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Online Archival Resources (for WA) from Anna Harbine


Today is a follow-up post to Anna Harbine's September 7th presentation to EWGS at our regular meeting. 

Besides explaining how "her" archives work, and how to come and access the materials and information in "her" archives, she shared a list of recommended Online Archival Resources, mostly (but not all) for Washington.

1. Washington State Digital Archives - www.digitalarchives.wa.gov

2. Washington State Library - www.sos.wa.gov/library

3. Archives West - www.archiveswest.orbiscascade.org

4. Mountain West Digital Library - www.mwdl.org

5. Library of Congress' Chronicling America - www.chroniclingamerica.loc.gov

Though not on her list, and not an "archives," as such, I'm adding this link because I find it most useful:


HistoryLink.org: The Free Online Encyclopedia of Washington ...

The free online encyclopedia of Washington state history. 7650 HistoryLink.org articles now available. 

Friday, October 11, 2019

Spotlight On EWGS Member: Lola McCreary


Today's spotlight is on long-time EWGS member, Lola King McCreary, nickname "Diddy."




Lola was born during the Great Depression in Cascade, Valley County, Idaho, to John Walter King (born in Kansas) and Zola Anita Ames (born in Dubois, Clark County, Idaho). She was named Lola because "both parents had siblings named Lola." 

Geographically her main lines go back to Minnesota, Kansas and Ireland. She has visited Ireland and "the old Idaho homestead." 

Besides EWGS, her hobbies include sewing and stamp collecting (none of us would have guess that, right?). For genealogy, she "mostly uses Ancestry." 

Lola's favorite colors are white, pink and beige. Her favorite dessert is "pie, any kind of pie." And for many of us having been in her home, she is a consummate hostess. 

To answer the question, what one word describes you, she wrote "ordinary."  Lola King McCreary is light years away from being "ordinary." She has served EWGS for decades, especially in the capacity of nominating committee, a totally unenviable job. EWGS has benefited tremendously from Lola's membership and would not be the organization it is without her. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Postal Forwarding Directories...... An Unique Resource for YOU?


EWGS has had in its collection in the downtown Spokane Public Library a most unique collection of books. Called Postal Forwarding Directories, they would remind you of a city directory. But they were created to help postmen deliver the mail. On the printed pages, name and addresses are listed.

What makes these volumes so unique is that every few pages there are some blank pages inserted where the postman could write in the new/forwarding address of a family on his route. 

Our collection spanned about 1903 to 1940 for Spokane but EWGS figures that other cities had such too. (Doing a Google search, I could find nothing pertinent to this topic.) EWGS has wanted for years to have these unique resources to be digitized and finally that time came and the digitization is in progress under the direction of Becky Menzel. Even with the 2-year hiatus before we get a new library, Becky will have an office at Gonzaga and (I'm told) will continue working on the project. 

Now what does this mean to YOUR genealogy? Well, imagine this: you know where your family was in 1905 and again in 1930 but where were they in between? Was there a Postal Forwarding Directory in that 1905 town that would hold a clue? The only way to know is to contact the public library, genealogy society and/or historical society in that place.

I thank Jeanne Coe for information on this project; she's been on the digitizing crew. 

Friday, October 4, 2019

EWGS Fall Workshop...... College for Genealogists!


What are YOU doing tomorrow, dear friend? 

I hope you're planning to come to the EWGS Fall Workshop where you'll have the choice of 12 classes from which to learn ideas and tips on how to better find those illusive ancestors. 

Place: Prince of Peace Lutheran Church; drive out Indian Trail Road in NW Spokane until you see the church (and cars!) on your left.

Time:  Registration opens at 8:00.

Cost:  $25 and that includes lunch!

Syllabus: There will not be a printed syllabus at the registration table; you must click to www.EWGSI.org, and print out the syllabus (or parts you want) for yourself. 

Do hope to see you then/there. Let's learn together.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

A tweezer cream..... from the Crescent?


Jeanne Coe and I are working on Fridays at the MAC to index the obituaries in the 22 file drawers of biographies. We hope to finish before we die. :-)  Anyway. I do the typing on my laptop as Jeanne pulls the envelope contents out. Many times there are just folded newspaper sheets containing true biographical data on a person. BUT those old newspapers are so much fun to see! This was from the Spokesman in 1973:

Friday, September 27, 2019


I just read a list from the Spokane Directory 1886-1887  which listed so many and varied occupations pursued by Spokane citizens. I was amazed because so many exist today.  I found:

Plumber  --  Register of Land  --  Attorney  --  Furniture  --  Blacksmith  --  Saloon  --  Groceries  --  Hides and Furs  --  Restaurant  --  Butcher  --  Music Teacher  --  Dry Goods  --  Clergyman  --  Milliner  --  Physician  --  Proprietor  --  Banker  --  Catholic Priest  --  Dressmaking  --  Carriage Maker  --  Grain & Hay  --  Undertaker  --  Publisher  --  Livery Stable  --  Druggist  --  Hotel  --  Notions  --  Shoes & Boots  --  Japanese Goods  --  Gasfitter  --  Barber Shop  --  Drayman  --  Seedsman  --  Mining Broker  --  Photographer  --  Cigars & Tobacco  --  Dentist  --  Sporting Goods  --  Boarding House  --  Insurance Broker  --  Judge  --  Jeweler  --  Book Seller  --  Hardware  --  Gunsmith  --  Painter  --  Brewery  --  Tailor  --  Military Telegrapher  --  Bill Poster  --  Baker  --  NP Railroad Agent  --  Books & Stationery

Ever given much thought to your ancestor's occupation? What documentation do you have for that fact? 

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

He Discovered The Fire Of '89


Jeanne Coe and I are indexing the obituaries found in the 24 drawers of biographies down at the MAC. This particular one was too interesting not to share. From the Spokesman Review, the date was 22 April 1937.

Harry B. Arnold, the man who is credited with discovering the historic fire of 1889 which destroyed Spokane, then Spokane Falls, is dead.

Mr. Arnold died Tuesday night in his home, W. 713 Dalton, aged 75. Christian Science funeral will be read Friday at 1:30 ......

It was a history-making ride that Mr. Arnold and his young wife, the former Ellis L. Barzee of Turner, Oregon, took that Sunday afternoon of August 4, 1889. Noticing the smoke and flame pouring from the roof of a restaurant, Mr. Arnold stopped his carriage to give the alarm, pointing his whip at the blazing roof. The alarm was spread by another resident whose Sunday afternoon nap on the front porch of his nearby home was interrupted by the newlyweds' cry. 

After the town was destroyed, Mr. and Mrs. Arnold moved to Farmington, where he entered the grain business and became widely known in the Palouse. In 1908 they returned to Spokane, where Mr. Arnold entered the real estate and investment business.

Mr. Arnold was born in the Umpquah Valley, Oregon, on May 17, 1861, and went to Idaho with his grandparents in 1872. When 17 he joined the Second Idaho Volunteers under Captain Franklin McCarrie and served during the Nez Perce Indian uprising. Later he homesteaded near Farmington where he farmed and operated a livery stable several years before he and his wife moved to Spokane Falls in 1889.