The questions in the survey are open to interpretation, and there’s no right way to answer them. Whether you grew up going to Fort Humboldt, or you’ve never been, you are invited to share your perspective. And please share widely amongst your Eureka and Humboldt circles.”
Jeannie Pfaelzer included a photo in her book, Driven Out, The Forgotten War Against Chinese Americans, that references a Chinese expulsion in Humboldt County in 1906- I’ve finally found the story…
In the summer of 1905, the Tallant-Grant Co. of Astoria, Oregon established a cold storage plant at Port Kenyon on the Salt River and with the commencement of the salmon season in October, purchased the fishermen’s catches for two cents a pound. During two months of fishing and at various times, daily receipts of nine, ten, and twelve tons were recorded (Ferndale Enterprise, 1 Aug. 1905; 17 Oct. 1905; 27 Oct. 1905; 5 Dec. 1905). Because Eel River salmon were no longer of the size or grade most desirable for cold storage purposes and in order to handle this surplus, the Company explored the feasibility of developing a cannery at Port Kenyon (Ferndale Enterprise 2 Oct. 1906). An inquiry was made to the Ferndale Chamber of Commerce about the employment of Chinese labor, without which, the Company claimed such a plant could not be successful. The Chamber responded that there would be no objection as long as certain conditions were met,including 1) the Chinese would work only at the cannery, 2) stay no longer than the period of operations, and 3) they would not be permitted at any time to leave the vicinity of the cannery (Ferndale Enterprise 22 June 1906). The Tallant-Grant Company built a 110×50 addition to the Port Kenyon Cold Storage Company building for the cannery, which began operations during the 1906 season. The investors felt that such a facility would be economically viable by utilizing the smaller salmon caught by the local fishermen and easily exported via the Salt River (Ferndale Enterprise 4 Sept. 1906; 9 Oct. 1906). Read the rest of this entry »
Some day this project will be done and I’ll stop posting Carson Block Building photos. But not yet. I’m proud to say my client Pacific Builders is leading this project and doing an incredible job.
Please click on the photos to enlarge and see details.
I recently (finally) finished a story about Lucy Romero for the North Coast Journal. It is an important story and I am thankful to Thad Greenson, their editor, for working so long and patiently with me to get it done.
There is one point I failed to include though and so want to share it here. This is from a post I did years ago, but it is just as important to remember now…
In the western movie, Broken Trail , there is a scene where Robert Duvall struggles to learn the names of five Chinese girls under his care. They speak no English and growing frustrated, Duvall’s character points to each one in turn and names them, “One, Two, Three, Four… “. The girls accept the names, because they have no choice.
The same thing happened here. When the white settlers arrived, they re “named” the native people. Smo-Wa became Henry Capell (he was from the village of Capell). Corn-no-wish became Weichpec Oscar. Zo-wish-wish, a Wiyot woman related to Lucy’s daughter, Annie, was also known as “Rose”.
Lucy, the woman I write about, was only one of many “Lucys”.
The first photo was a random find-but a little internet search turned up the second graphic and Wikipedia (yeah, I know it isn’t gospel but can still be useful) provided the following. I didn’t know a simple photo could lead to something that makes me sad but it sounds like the demolition of this building was quite a loss…
Humboldt Bay Woolen Mill manufactured woolen cloth from 1901 to after World War II. The mill was listed as a National Historic Monument but demolished by the City of Eureka in 1987.
When the Humboldt Bay Woolen Mill was built in 1901, the company was capitalized to $100,000 by several local businessmen including timber mill owner, William Carson,sheep rancher Hugh Webster McClellan, and rancher Robert Porter who continued as Vice-President of the newly formed company. According to the 1902 Illustrated Map of Eureka, the other officers included J.W. Henderson, President and N. McMillan, Secretary.
The Mill manufactured woolen fabrics from 1901 until it closed after World War II. After sitting empty for many years, it was listed on the National Register on 25 June 1982, but it only survived five more years. After the city designated it a dangerous building in 1987, local preservationists and the Eureka Heritage Society tried to get funding to rehabilitate it, but it was torn down in the same year.
The Mill was described as an excellent example of Greek Revival architecture and one of the few industrial buildings historically not associated with timber or fishing. Some architectural features of the Mill were saved by historians before the demolition. The site is currently a chain pharmacy, a grocery store and parking. The destruction of this building rallied community activists to save other historically significant structures in Eureka.
- “National Register Information System”. National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2010-07-09.
- “Robert Porter”. Humboldt County, California – Biographies. Retrieved 6 March 2012.
- McDonald, Jill; Jim Morrison, John Disiere and Linda Disiere (2007). “Carson the Man & Times”. Carson Mansion History. The Ingomar Club, Eureka, California.
- “Webster McClellan 1836-December 31, 1911”. Humboldt County, California – Biographies. Retrieved 6 March 2012.
- “Draft City of Eureka Historic Preservation Plan”. 10 March 2004. Retrieved 6 March 2012.
- Overhold, Ken (Editor) (1987, Second Edition 1994). Eureka: An Architectural Heritage. Eureka, California: Eureka Heritage Society. p. 270. ISBN 0-9615004-0-9. Check date values in:
So lately I’ve been watching a show on Netflix called Hell on Wheels, an AMC series about the building of the transcontinental railroad . I notice the hats sported by the characters on the show are the same as the ones worn by long-ago guests of the Pioneer Hotel – once located at Requa on the banks of the Klamath River. And they wear the same serious expressions.
The wild west was here too and I like that…