We arrived home to Portland late Thursday night. The plane was delayed by a couple of hours because of mechanical difficulties. That always makes you a little nervous, doesn't it?
The original plan of being home before nine became 11pm. Needless to say, after dropping my sister-in-law off at her house, I went home and dropped into bed.
The next morning, I unpacked and placed my camera on my bed to start the final blog post. By the time breakfast was over, my camera was nowhere to be found. Thus, the reason for this late post. The camera was found this morning. YAY!!!
By Thursday, everyone had left Spokane, so my sister-in-law and I had a chance to run around and do some personal things--looking for the homes my mom and dad lived in in their teen years, going to the Spokane library to do some research in their Northwest Room (complete failure) and going to the Museum of Arts and Culture to research what they have. We'd been told that they probably had some things from my grandfather's museum there but no one had been able to find it. Since I am his granddaughter, I was told I might be able to recover things that no one else had. I was hopeful. Those were our plans before we left town.
We packed up our stuff and checked out of our hotel, which was lovely, by the way. I found an amazing deal on expedia.com. I don't usually use expedia, but I have to say it was a very positive experience. Here are a few photos of where we stayed:
We went to breakfast and headed to the library. We found very little there, but we did find the address of the place where my mom and dad met--see last week's "Wordless Wednesday" post.
A little background on that....I had called my dad shortly after we'd arrived in Spokane and asked for some addresses of places of family significance including the candy factory where he and mom had met. He explained that although it was a candy factory, it was called the "Loose-Wiles Biscuit Company" and he didn't think it existed any more because he had been back to look for it and had never been able to find it. When he told me a little about the location--off of Sprague and near an overpass--I knew we were close with our hotel. The hotel was on Sprague and we had gone under an overpass to get there.
While at the library, I found a phone directory from 1940. I looked up the name of the company and found it was at 104 S. Division. On our way out of town, we took a minute to search it out, and there it was. It's now a storage company, but the old building is still there.
After the library we went to the M.A.C.--Museum of Art and Culture and went over to the archives building. I filled out the research form and was directed to the files where I found three files on my grandfather. One file contained the original manuscripts from his newspaper articles. They looked like this:
I think there were about 100 pages. I photographed each.
I also sent the woman who was helping me on a wild goose chase looking for artifacts from my grandfather's museum. She asked when they had been donated. I told her he had passed away in 1961 and that was all I knew. It ended up that part of that mystery was solved. She found that they had been donated by his wife in 1964, but the sad news was that at that time, donations weren't very well documented. She found a list of about four things--two fishing poles, sinkers, and a couple other items. Funny, but they were antiques of some significance, I assume.
|A corner of Howard Stegner's Echoes of Yesterday Museum, Spokane, WA (circa 1960).|
She told me that in order to see them I'd have to make an appointment, but it had to be more than 24 hours in advance. **sigh** Regardless, it was good to know that they did have some of his things. I will make an appointment next time I'm in town.
From there, we went to the Loose-Wiles location, to dinner, and to the airport.
It was a WONDERFUL trip. I wanted to return home with no regrets, and I did. My sister-in-law was an amazing traveling companion. I'm sure I made her endure a LOT of stuff she found just plain boring, but she never so much as sighed or paced. She was the only driver for the rental car, and she drove us around everywhere. She has a remarkable sense of direction. We were never lost--except when the GPS was in my hands.
So grateful to the cousins that came. It's wonderful to have family!
|With the Stegner-Narup cousins behind the Spokane Valley Heritage Museum|