community at large

community at large

Community at Large: Arthur Clarkston and Sowell Carlstrom

Arthur Clarkston and Sowell Carlstrom bring this segment of logging community members to an end. Big thanks to Jenny Tenlen at the Cowlitz Co. GenWeb Project for providing census information.

 Arthur looks a bit unsure as he stands on a bench made from fir bows; he's dressed in Scandinavian clothing. According to the 1910 Cowlitz Co. census Arthur was 2 years old and the son of James (b. 1881) and Alma (b. 1890), both parents originally from Minnesota and probably of Swedish decent. This photo was likely taken around 1913-14 when Arthur was 5-6 years of age.

Arthur Clarkston

Sowell's portrait was shot professionally at Wedekin Studio in Astoria, OR. Little Sowell Carlstrom is 5 years old in his photograph. Poised with self-assuredness his sophistication seems doubt free. Based on information in the Cowlitz Co. censusSowell was 3 years old in 1920. There are 5 other Carlstrom's listed, I'm guessing Sowell's parents were Arthur (b. 1891, Sweden) and Blanch (b. 1898, WA).

Sowell Carlstrom, age 5.

community at large, bergstrom

Community at Large: The Bergstroms

Mrs. Mary Bergstrom made an earlier appearance in a post with Mrs. Baldridge and Edna Baldridge. In this photo set she sits in formal wear with her sibling and husband Mr. John Bergstrom. More digging revealed a photograph of the Bergstrom's daughter Ellen, pictured in her white winter jacket and hat. They are listed in a transcribed 1910 Oak Point Census report by David Williams under the name Bystrum.  

The Persson, Bergstrom, Bennett and Baldridge families were obviously a close circle of friends. They likely worked for an outfit named W. L. & T Co. Possibly the "W" represents a surname and the "L & T" are short for Lumber and Timber? Any mild research I've done trying to decode this company's abbreviated name has resulted in mostly dead ends.  I'm still perusing leads, but there's no immediate history available. 

There is however, successful identification of several families and individuals. And with the available genealogy resources online, I'm confident there'll be reunions to come. 

From right to left: Mrs. Bergstrom, Mr. Bergstrom and Mrs. Bergstrom's unknown sibling. 

Mrs. Bergstrom (right) and unknown sibling. 

Ellen Bergstrom, 1911-13.

community at large

Community at Large: Mrs. Bennett and Daughter Evelyn

After sorting through photographs last night I was lucky to find little Evelyn Bennett pictured here with mother Loretta Bennett. Mrs. Bennett clutches a pair of eye glasses with white gloves while Evelyn sits on what appears to be a rock on the beach. Based on census records Evelyn was 2 years old in 1910, my guess is she's 5-6 years old here. 

Mrs. Loretta Bennett and daughter Evelyn Bennett, (1915-16).

Backside of postcard with handwritten note; Mrs. Bennett & Evelyn.

Little Evelyn Bennett and Harold Martin. The picture couldn't be a better example of a wistful affection for the past. The dress style, sepia tones and light exposure, crystalize the intrinsic nature of everyday life in early century logging communities. These two young children surely witnessed one of our regions most prolific industrially inflicted catastrophes. 

Based on historical accounts, many children in the logging communities went on to be naturalists and conservationists, including E. H. Pearson. Perhaps at some point, we'll know more about the adult lives of these two, for now it's a mystery. 

Evelyn Bennett and dog with Harold Martin

Backside of postcard with handwritten note; Evelyn Bennett & Harold Martin

community at large

Community at Large: Father and Son

A new addition to the community. There are more photographs of this fellow and his boy, but I have yet to string together who he is and what exactly his role in the camps was. In most photos the man is dressed impeccably well and noticeably cleaner than his peers. Might he be manager of E. A. Persson's employer? Or, just dressed well for a day in the city with his child.

In this classic real photo postcard, the man sits in a brilliantly constructed commercial photographers set made complete with a hand-painted mural of downtown Portland and majestic Mt. Hood residing. A three-dimensional stylized model plane finished with a twirling propeller seats the two as they fly high above The Rose City. 

I love these fun shots. This activity was obviously a novelty and a "must do" for logging community day outings. Crossing my fingers I'll soon be able to give this seemingly noble man a name.    

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Community at Large: Baldridge Family

Community at Large will be a series of posts touching on various individuals and family photographs. Some are marked with names but most are not, hopefully in time the unidentified will become known through the internets immortal timelessness. 

I'll start with a photograph E. H. Pearson referred to as "the Baldridge all male family." Not entirely true obviously, for Mrs. Baldridge will make appearances in future posts, and from what I've gathered the "all male family" later had at least one girl (it's still a bit unclear). 

Here the boys stand with their father at the base of a massive Doug Fir, later to be felled I'm sure. Though the trees fate would surely be milled, in photograph its spirit remains eternal. The 13ft diameter timber has been claimed by the Wisconsin Lumber & Timber Co., of which Ira Baldridge was camp superintendent.

Thanks to Loreen Wells and her information about the Baldridge family, I was able to learn Mr. and Mrs. Baldridge's first names. With this bit of information the entire Baldridge family has been identified. 

From left to right: Henry, Ira, John, Harry, Benny & Jack.

My memory served me well for a change, I recalled seeing this postcard a few weeks back. To follow up on my assumption that the "Baldridge all male family" wasn't truly all male, here's proof. Mrs. Baldridge stands hand-in-hand with her young daughter Edna Baldridge, perched on a chair. The two accompany Mrs. Mary Bergestrom, who'll make appearances in future posts. 

Families ventured by rail from remote logging camps to have portraits taken in nearby Portland, OR. Some of the photographs were developed as homemade real photo postcards, like this one. Lucky for us, whomever scrawled these names on the back helped establish clearly, the Baldridge family did indeed have a beautiful baby girl, Edna. The exact year of this photograph is unknown, guessing somewhere between 1910-13.

Mrs. Minnie Baldridge and daughter Edna accompanied by Mrs. Mary Bergstrom.

Digging tonight I found this photograph of Edna, Harry, John and Henry Baldridge (Jack and Ben not pictured). The siblings stand outside a small cedar dwelling, possibly their home in a logging camp somewhere in the Cascades of Washington. The note attached explains their father Ira, was camp superintendent. This nearly completes identifying the entire family. With the exception of Mrs. Baldridge's first name, I now know the names of everyone. The discovery will inspire another push to locate any living decedents. They must be out there somewhere. 

Edna, Harry, John and Henry Baldridge (Jack and Ben not pictured)