100 years ago in the Washie


Sept. 10, 1913

How Splash Dam Injured To Woman

The trial of the $20,000 damage suit of Lee Berryman and wife against the East Hoquiam Boom & Logging Co., was begun this morning before a jury in Judge Sheek’s court. Charles W. Smith and Leo Teats, of Teats, Teats & Teats, Tacoma, are attorneys for the Berrymans and A.M. and W. H. Abel are attorneys for the logging company.

The story of the plaintiffs as told by Attorney Teats to the jury is:

They own a farm about six miles above Hoquiam, that is bisected by the East Hoquiam river. About four miles above it the logging company has a splash dam. Ordinarily the East Hoquiam is a shallow stream of water but when the gates of the dam is open it comes down a wall of water six or eight feet high, and is said to be dangerous to anyone caught in the bed. The Berrymans, he said, had often notified the logging company of the danger of releasing the water without notice, and had asked for a telephone warning when it was done. For a time warnings were given but they were discontinued.

About a year ago in July Mr. Berryman was away from home. Mrs. Berryman about 6 in the evening went across the river to look after the stock, leaving her baby about 50 feet from the river bank. She heard the water of a splash coming, and knowing it would be an hour or more before she could get back if she waited until it had passed, attempted to race across the stream to her child. In the effort she was injured, in a manner from which they claim she will never recover, and over $200 hospital and surgical fees have been spent.

The case is likely to take two or more days for a hearing.

While giving her testimony this afternoon Mrs. Berryman became hysterical and finally had to leave the court room. Attorney Abel, for the logging company, referred to the occurrence as a sham. Attorney Teats objected to such remarks before the jury and finally Judge Sheeks ordered both attorneys to drop their argument until it came time for arguments.

Mrs. Berryman’s story, other than had been told by the attorney, was of crossing the river. Interrupted by her hysterical crying it was as follows:

“I had left the baby on the bank on the home side of the river. I heard the water coming. I ran back toward the river to the bank and jumped over — a distance of 8 or 9 feet. I fell and felt severe pain. (Here the story was interrupted by her crying.) I got up and ran through the two shallow channels. I fell twice. I don’t know how, but I got up the bank with the baby. Then I fell unable to support myself longer.”

Other witnesses, Mrs. Berryman’s sister and a neighbor, told of carrying her to the house and her sister told “of the nature of her injuries. Considerable of the afternoon was taken up with the examination of an Aberdeen physician as to the injuries from which the woman is suffering. He says she will never be well again and that she never again can be a mother. Several hypothetical questions were asked of the doctor.

Sept. 12, 1913

Good Progress Made On East Side Hall

Excellent progress is being made on the new hall of the Swedish and Finnish Temperance societies, which is being constructed at B and Fourteenth streets, East Hoquiam under supervision of John Brann, the architect. He expects the building to be ready for occupancy by Oct. 15. The ground dimensions of the two-story structure are 92x42 feet. The main hall on the lower floor is 52x52 with a well appointed stage at the rear and reception rooms and foyer is front. Dining room and kitchen are located on the second floor.

Berrymans Lose Case Against Boom Co.

The Berryman damage case against the East Hoquiam Boom & Logging Co. was non-suited this morning. For “good cause shown,” by Judge Sheeks and the case was dismissed. The plaintiffs finished their evidence last night when Attorney Abel for the defense made the motion for a non-suit.

It developed in the arguments over the motion for dismissal that there are no precedents in such cases as the Berryman’s. It seems there have been no suits for damage resulting from log splashes in the supreme court. It was not shown by the plaintiffs that the logging company was under any obligations to notify them of the time of a splash, and it was shown they knew there was likely to be splashes two or three times a week. Hence Attorney Abel argued it was contributary negligence for the mother to leave her child near the banks of the river and thus the company could not be held to blame for the neccessity which prompted her to the exertions that caused the injuries. The attorneys for the Berrymans argued that while there was no precedent, the same general laws that would apply to blowing stumps or doing anything that was apt to cause damage to others would apply, and that it was the duty of the logging company to notify those living along the river when they were going to splash logs.

Sept. 13, 1913

Golf and Country Club Is To Be Formed Here

The Hoquiam Golf and Country club is a probability of the near future. The movement is so far advanced that a committee consisting of Messrs. J. O. Stearns, W. E. Campbell and R. L. Craig has been appointed to select a site and that work is now in hand.

Yesterday the committee visited Boone prairie, about 15 miles west of the city on the road to Pacific Beach, and also near the Moclips branch of the Northern Pacific. An 89-acre tract which is ideally located for a nine-hole golf course is under inspection and will be submitted with others.

The ground is level and can be easily cleared and drained. Trees and a stream will form hazards in the absence of hills or rolling ground. Those who know say that this land will make an excellent course.

It is the intention to erect a comfortable club house and to lay out the ground after the most approved fashion. The railroad station of Carlisle is about 2000 feet from the proposed golf links and a good plank walk and graded road will be built from the station to the grounds.

There is ample material in Hoquiam for the inauguration and support of a country club, such as is maintained by other cities of like population and it will not be long until the ancient and honorable game of golf will be a feature of social life here.