Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Scappoose, Oregon Historical Sketches

Scappoose, Oregon Historical Sketches
Good History 25 names, BK No 1, Pioneers
Historical Sketches 1824 – 1940, J. G. Watts, 1940, Front page
Susannah Rice 437 NE Multnomah St. Portland
List Names for 1830, 1840, 1850

Watts Books at the Scappoose Library with Signatures

Watts Books at the Scappoose Library with Signatures

Gefchichten and Marchen, by Lillian Foster, 1899: John Russell Collier

Germelshaufen by Griffin M. Lovelace: Helen Watts Clothier

Marchen und Erzahlungen by H. A. Guerber: 1914-15 Helen L. Watts, S.H.S.

Marchen und Erzablungen by H. A. Guerber, vol. 2, Helen L. Watts, S.H.S. ‘17

Sober als bie Rirdje by Mills Whittlesey, A.M., Helen Watts

Frau Sorge by Gustav Gruener, 1911, Presented by J. G. Watts, Feb. 17, 1930

The Footprints of Time And a Complete Analysis of the American System of Government, by 
Charles Bancroft, 1880, Jas. G. Watts, 1881, 17 yrs. old, Scappoose, Ore., Bought May 2, 1881, $5.00

Business Law for Business Men, State of Oregon, by A. J. Bledsoe, 1915, Watts and Price 1915
With receipt, received payment A. J. Bledsoe Mgr., Watts & Price, Scappoose, Or., Aug. 24, 1915

Nasby In Excile or six months of travel, by David R. Locke, 1882, Presented to Scappoose Public 
Library by Miss Vera Price May 1940, Mrs. D. W. Price

Story of One Hundred Years, by Daniel B. Shepp, Presented to Scappoose Public Library by Miss 
Vera Price May 1940, Mrs. D. W. Price

History of The Oregon Country, by Harvey W. Scott, 1924, Presented by Mr. & Mrs. Henry Collier (Miss Maude Watts) Feb. 15, 1930, sticker in book Presented by Henry E. Collier, Maude E. Collier, In Memory of John R. Watts and Elizabeth M. Watts, Pioneers 1852

Joab Powell, Homespun Missionary, by M. Leona Nichols, 1935, from the library of A. E. Burns, a grandson of William Watts, Scappoose Pioneer of 1852

A History of Oregon, by Robert Carlton Clark, Ph. D., 1926, from the library of A. E. Burns, a grandson of William Watts, (a pioneer of Scappoose (1852) ), Ira W. Burns 1955

Life on the Plains of the Pacific, Oregon: History, Condition and Prospects, by Rev. Gustavus Hines, 1881, Given by Ida Watts Burns in memory of her father William Watts (1803-1873) on whose donation homestead the town of Scappoose is located, A. E. Burns

History of the Columbia River Valley, by Fred Lockley, 1928, Presented to the Scappoose Public Library by Mrs. Henry Duncan of Warren, Oregon in memory of her brother Wm. Fullerton born in the Scappoose vicinity in 18??

No Man Like Joe, The Life and Times of Joseph L. Meek, by Harvey Elmer Tobie, Our Pioneer Association, May 1875, sticker in book Presented by Friends In Memory of J. G. and Rose E. Watts

Life and Letters of Mrs. Jason Lee, by Theresa Gay, 1936, Presented by friends of J. G. and Rose E. Watts.

Sacajawea of the Shoshones, by Dela Gould Emmons, 1949, Presented by friends of J. G. and Rose E. Watts.

The Empire Builders, by Robert Ormond Case, 1949, Presented by the Scappoose Parent Teacher Association founders day February 18, 1959, in memory of Mrs. Rose Watts, sticker in book Presented by Friends In Memory of J. G. and Rose E. Watts

The Rand-McNally Guide to the Great Northwest, by S. H. Soule, 1903, From the library of Archie Burns who was a grandson of William Watts the 1852 Pioneer of Scappoose, Presented Ida W. Burns, 1955

The Use of the National Forests, by Gifford Pinchot, Forester, 1907, Given to Scappoose Public Library, 1946, Mary Ewing

Sunset’s Flower Arrangement Book, by Nell True Welch, 1942, Presented to Scappoose Library by Mrs. W. D. Burg, 1950, Mrs. Lena Burg

There are some books that we were unable to locate and they are probably set aside somewhere. They include:
Beasee Hero? by Ruth Bender, 1959
The State of Oregon General & Special Laws, Legislative Assembly 1899
The Tender Heart by Archie Bearns, 1944
Days with Chief Joseph: Diary, by Erskine Wood, 1950

Northwest Exploration, by Gordon Speck, 1845

Scappoose Historical Society Board Information

 Scappoose Historical Society Board Information
1997 22 Nov., History of Scappoose Historical Society
1975 7 Apr., Letter Mary Pintarich to Mr. Van Watts, not this Watts family
Research on Van Watts Family, not related

Scappoose Historical Society Timeline

Scappoose Historical Society Timeline

1852       12 October, William Watts born 1803 KY, arrived in Oregon with his second wife Nancy Jane with whom he had two children Robert and Elizabeth; settled Donation Land Claim 1358, 10 December 1852. The claims were for 320 acres and an additional 320 acres for the wife. His son Benjamin M. (wrote Ben Watts Trail Log), had Donation Land Claim 1450. William had seven children from his first marriage to Elizabeth M. Naylor and all five sons came to Oregon including John W. (wrote “Foghorn” Diary), James W., Francis and Thomas. William with his third wife, Mary Ann Butterworth, had four children Henry Clay (his daughter Alice Mary Watts wrote about the family in 1981), Ewing Jolly, Isabelle (her daughter Ida Marion Strong Seggel wrote about the family in 1976) and Ida Ann.

1861       12 December James Washington Watts married Elizabeth Matilda Nessly, parents of Minnie Annette, James Grant and William Thomas; Elizabeth later married John Ralph Watts a cousin of James Washington Watts.

1872       14 August death of James Washington Watts.

1873       27 April marriage of Elizabeth Matilda Watts to John Ralph Watts. Three daughters born to them: Lillie May Perry, Marie Ellen Eskridge and Maude Elizabeth Collier (wrote about the family in 1976).

1864       23 October James Grant Watts born in Scappoose, Oregon. (Wrote history of Scappoose 1852-1934)

1868       25 December Arizona Rosamund Ewing born in DesMoines, Iowa.

1888       2 February Daniel (Dee) William Price married Minnie Annette Watts.

1890       17 September James Grant Watts married Arizona Rosamund (Rose) Ewing.

1891       4 June birth of son Raymond Ewing Watts, who died 16 June 1904.

1894       25 April birth of daughter Hazel Mildred Watts who married Rev. Vernon Walter Cooke 16 May 1917.

1898       20 December birth of daughter Helen Lucille who married Reverdy Mead Clothier 1 January 1924.

1902     James Grant Watts built Watts house in Scappoose, Oregon.

1905       1 February birth of son James Loring Watts who married Irene K. Leach 12 March 1938. (Wrote about the family in 1976)
               16 April death of John Ralph Watts, second husband of Elizabeth Matilda Watts.

1909       Cook book produced by the Columbia County Ladies Aid Society.

1920       2 January death of Elizabeth Matilda Nessly Watts. Scappoose Street named for her. Will in Columbia Co. She bequeathed land for public schools.

                13 April first special election held, J G Watts elected first mayor

1921       13 July City of Scappoose Incorporated and adopted its first charter, voted on Aug. 13 at Watts and Price Hall, Scappoose, Oregon, formally adopted November 1, 1921

1922       City water system complete

1924       Street lights installed

                Cook book produced by the Scappoose Ladies Aid Society.

1927       Electricity connected to homes

1928       Scappoose Garden Club Organized

1929       Library started by Rose Watts, Caroline Dorris and Lena Burg, November 29 tea, over 100 books donated.

1931      Fire at Watts and Price store, library books moved to Watts home

1938       22 April Scappoose Garden Club reorganized. Gladys Wheeler President, Rose Watts Vice-President, Amy Frakes Secretary-Treasurer.

1956       24 April James Grant Watts died.

1958      Scappoose Public Library built as part of Fire Station building, dedication October 20, books to be moved
by the high school students. About 4,000 to 5,000 books. Corner stone placed with items of interest.

1959       31 January Rose Watts died.
               Beverly Kennedy became librarian and would serve for over thirty years, retiring in 1992.

1969       June 26 – City of Scappoose purchased the Watts house from James Loring Watts and Irene L. Watts for $20,000. About this time it is estimated that there were 16,000 books in the library.

1974       October - Formed society, city moved offices into Watts house
               December 3 – Society members met with City Council
               December 5 – Society incorporated with non-profit status, Mary Pintarich president, chairperson

1975       January 21 – Society met with city and established guidelines
               September 29 – Society bylaws adopted

6 October – Council behind society 1976 project to rejuvenate the Watts house, received grant, society to oversee the museum

1977       June 24 – Children’s Museum opened, overseen by the Woman’s Club of Scappoose

1980       February 19 – Watts house designated first historic landmark of Scappoose
              November 28 – Watts house place on National Register of Historic Places

1981       January 5 – Watts house recognized by State Historic Preservation Office

1983       May 2 – Final Woman’s Club meeting, turned over Children’s Museum and funding to Scappoose Historical Society, copy of minutes

1987       December 5 – Watts house non-profit status reinstated by Oregon Corporation Division

1988       42 members
               March 3 – Vivian R. Urie president, chairperson and registered agent of society

1989       June 20 – Irene Watts a member of the society is quoted, “Home was purchased by the city with the understanding it was a historical site and would become a museum eventually.”
               June 20 Board minutes of Scappoose Historical Society

1997       20 members
               November 22 – The 22 year relationship between city and the society, city report
               Scappoose High School advanced wood working class and instructor donated their time to construct the display cases, Scappoose Woman’s Club treasury provided funds, Scappoose Senior Citizens donated a quilt that they made as a bicentennial project

2004       ReAnna Sharp president of society

2006       29 members

2012       Barbara Hayden president of society

2016       Elaine Thompson president of society, 24 members

2017       Karen Holmberg president of society

A Serendipity Day

Went out to lunch with my brother and his daughter. We went to one of our mother's and grandmother's favorite restaurants, the Wishing Well, in St. John's, Oregon. Great Chinese food. I had not been there for 15 years. We celebrated my niece's birthday and had a great visit. Then we drove by my Aunt and Uncle's home who I have not spoken to in four years. They were at the beach, but I hope to make contact soon. Sometimes we get promptings to do something and it feels so good when we follow them. Family memories are precious. My niece shared with me that she had been given some of our mother's things. Her family now has the silverware our mother purchased before she got married to our father and a couple of her paintings. What a treasure just knowing she has them. A serendipity day.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Report of Materials at the Watts House and the Public Library in Scappoose, Oregon September 2017

After a year of sorting, organizing, reading, typing, putting into notebooks, making lists and taking lots of notes I am drawing to a close on the Watts House Collections Inventory for the Scappoose Historical Society. There are still a few odds and ends to finish now that the overall project is completed. There are several posts on my blog if you are interested in seeing what we found. Today I created two notebooks, one for the overall board information and the other for all of the collections. That is how I preserve the memories and compilations in a format that documents the many hours spent on this project. My thanks to Tricia Oberndorf, Karen Holmberg, Dorothy Gallagle, our board member Mardi's daughter, Mardi's high school students and anyone else I may have overlooked. It has been a great learning adventure which has enhanced my working skills immensely!

Monday, September 18, 2017

The Watts House Collections - Compiled Family Histories

These family histories were written by family members and others who wanted to preserve the stories of the Watts family. Three of them were written in 1976 as part of the Bi-Centennial Celebration of the United States. Van Watts, while not a descendant, contributed greatly to the story and promoted the family during this time period.

The Watts Family in Oregon, 1852-1934 by James Grant Watts (1940)

History of Scappoose by James Loring Watts, son of James Grant Watts, (1976) Printed by SHS

Genealogy of the Covered Wagon Wattses by Maude Watts Collier, half-sister of James Grant Watts,

Watts by Maude Watts Collier (1934) Loose papers clipped together

"Covered Wagon Watts" by Alice Mary Watts, cousin of James Grant Watts

My Columbia County Relatives by Ida Strong Seggel, aunt of James Grant Watts (1976)

"Foghorn" Diary by Dr. John William Watts, uncle of James Grant Watts

Ben Watts Trail Log by Benjamin Marion Watts, uncle of James Grant Watts (1948-1949) 2 copies

Watts Family Encyclopedia by Van Watts (1976)

Footsteps of Watts Women by Susie Lolita Watts Almond, daughter of Robert Deady Watts and granddaughter of Francis Harrison Tyler Watts (1974)

Francis Harrison Tyler Watts family booklet

The Watts House Collections - Old Ledger Books Downstairs

This was the first set of ledger books. A transcription was made of the first book due to the fragile nature of the book. It is done as close as possible to the original, but many pages are very hard to read. With the digitized copy and more time to verify some of the text a more complete and accurate transcription may be made. The second book for the Watts/Price store is easier to read and so only a list of names included was created.  The pages of the book are for various families who had accounts with the store, with extensive lists of the items being purchased. The last four books were used to create lists of people who lived in the area and paid water payments and other types of transactions with the city of Scappoose. 

1. Scappoose, Oregon Historical Sketches, Good History, 25 names: Book No 1, Pioneers, 
1824 – 1850; J. G. Watts, 1940; Lists of Names for 1830, 1840, 1850; Earliest Settlers 1845; Scappoose Sunday School - Ralph Watts Supt. 83 years old; J. G. Watts - City of Scappoose, 1852. Scanned by Columbia County Historical Museum 2017.

2. Watts/Price Store 1889/1890, Singed ledger book, lists of sales to Individuals. Scanned by Columbia County Historical Museum 2017.

3. Cash Book, Ledger of Water Payments and other City of Scappoose Financial Records,
January 1, 1941 to June 30, 1942, 131 pages.

4. Journal, Ledger of Water Payments and other City of Scappoose Financial Records July 1942 to June 1944, 201 pages. Expenses on Library 2nd Quarter 1944 Library $15.00.

5. S. E. Ledger, Water Payments and other City of Scappoose Financial Records
January 1945 to February 1946, 138 pages

6. Journal, Records for 1948-1949, Scappoose City Taxes for Commercial Accounts, 142 pages.

The Watts House Collections - Old Ledger Books Behind Counter

Watts House Collections - Old Books Behind Counter
May 25, 2017

This week we worked on cleaning out the counter in the store and found some great treasures. Dorothy and Karen assisted in this task. The books include:

1. Abstract of Warrants 1 – Town of Scappoose, Oregon, large ledger book, 1920- , expense accounting

2. Claim Register 1 – Town of Scappoose, Oregon, large ledger book, July 22, 1920 to April 4, 1921, 1923, Council Meeting, Claim Collections

3. Treasurer’s Cash Book 1 – Town of Scappoose, Oregon, large ledger book, 1921-1945, some water accounts, extra sheets July 1945- June 1947

4. Scappoose Garden Club 1928 Incorporation, Rose E. Watts note 3 Apr 1952
Pres. Asa Holaday
Vice Pres. Mrs. J. G. Watts
Sec/Trea. Mrs. George Frakes
Directors C. H. Keyes and Chas. Gerlach

5. Scappoose Garden Club 22 Apr. 1938-1942, Rose Watts Vice Pres., Library Rose Watts, Legislature Pearl Becker

6. Garden Club Small Ledger Book from 1956 to 1972, 144 pages, 17 pages of notes, lots of lists of names

7. Grange Organization meeting Jan. 18, 1936, mentions other local granges, Pearl Becker – 1941

8. City Ledger Book, General Accounts 1943-1944: General, Water, Road, State Tax Street Fund,
1946 Water Payments
Licenses, Fines, Taxes, Liquors, State Tax Street Fund, Misc.
Library Expenses, Auditing, Real Estate, Care of Prisoners, Salaries, Fire, Tree, S.I.A. Commissioner, Recorder – Salary/Supplies, Attorney Salary, Treasurer Salary, Rent, Library, Emergency, Bone Premiums, Lease, Telephone, Total Budget, Total Spent, Balance

9. City of Scappoose tall ledger book, 1942-1943, Water Collection 1939 – 1941, City of Scappoose
C. M. Dorris
Mary Ewing
Mrs. Daisy Hazen
J. G. Watts
James L. Watts

10. Small Ledger Book, probably of J. G. Watts, Level Book 3, Cash Book

11. Scappoose Cook Book, 1909, The Oregon Mist, St. Helens, 60 pages. A Book of Recipes by Columbia County Ladies

12. Scappoose Cook Book 1924, 95 pages.  A Book of Tested Recipes Collected by The Ladies’ Aid of Scappoose, Oregon

The Watts House Collections - Scrapbooks

There were thirty scrapbooks found at the Watts house. They cover a wide range of topics. Eight of them are articles written by the Roving Reporter with Social Notes published in the Columbia Herald from 1961 to 1980. Another is newspaper articles written by Karl Klooster, but there are no dates on the articles. I won’t go into detail on the other twenty-eight as they are explained some in the attached list. My favorite scrapbooks are numbers 2, 4, 5, 6, and 7. These will be further reviewed as time allows. So glad that we could get that finished.

The Watts House Collections - Newspapers

June 24, 2017

We finally got the newspapers brought upstairs so there was room to sort through them and inventory what we have. It took about fourteen hours of work, but it is done! Once the information is typed up we will share the newspapers in the collection. We did find a 1928 Scappoose Register and two 1931 Scappoose Independent papers. There is one tote of local Columbia County papers, one tote of the Bicentennial papers, three totes of Oregonians and one tote of Oregon Journals. While you can access some of them online the copies are not always easy to read. Most of these papers concern major national and world events. The motivation to finish this dirty and time consuming work are the last two collections to now process. We will be working on the scrap books and church collection in the coming month. Those will contain some of the heart of this community. I hope to close out the processing of the museum collections within the year of my first beginning the work. 

Serendipity Found in a Newspaper Article

"Well here goes, I must say, you are tenacious, based on your research you will get the info with or without me."
Thank you to a current client for this wonderful compliment. I do push to look in every nook and cranny I can think of when researching a family's history. The person had been most helpful in providing direct personal family information while I worked with the online resources. Her family was one of the last parts of a family and when I looked online I found information about her immediate family including six children. But I needed to connect to her birth family. In looking online at I found an article about her sister's wedding listing all of the family members. I call that a serendipity moment. There were no other articles about the family with a rather uncommon surname that came up!

The Watts House Collections - Church Books

After a year of compiling information on the materials held at the Watts House by the Scappoose Historical Society it is time to post the results. To start with I am posting the list of church books that were organized by dates they cover and as a group for the Ladies Aid Society of the Congregational Church of Scappoose, Oregon. First I will give a short overview and then the list.

There were many hours dedicated to organizing the forty church books of all various types and sizes. The forty books have been read and copies of lists and information about the Watts family and friends are recorded in about 150 pages of notes. These are available in the basement in a notebook. There are two additional red notebooks that hold the loose papers from the church collection. In the front of one notebook is the membership certificate for Rose Ewing Watts. She held many positions in the church and ladies organizations. Serving as clerk for many years Rose recorded the history of the people from this community.