Connect with Newcastle’s history during September
August 30, 2013
By Christina Corrales-Toy
The Newcastle Historical Society is bringing the city’s history directly to residents, offering free presentations about the city’s past, and displaying photos of important landmarks at the Newcastle Library throughout September.
The historical group will present three programs that will give residents insight into the city’s former coal production, the people that made up what was once the second largest town in the state and the story of the Newcastle Historic Cemetery.
“People do have a genuine interest in this community and some of its past,” said Russ Segner, president of the Newcastle Historical Society.
The first seminar is a Sept. 5 discussion, “The Coal Mines of Newcastle,” led by Segner.
“The coal mines were the reason Newcastle exists,” Segner said. “We’ll focus on the various mine structure locations and the railway that was built to serve the mine.”
Mayor Rich Crispo will lead the next presentation, “The Impact of Newcastle,” on Sept. 19.
This presentation is a larger overview about Newcastle’s history, including a discussion about early residents and perhaps some anecdotes describing how they lived.
Vickie Baima Olson, who has ancestors that worked in the Newcastle mines, will lead a discussion about the Newcastle Historic Cemetery Sept. 26.
“Gone but Not Forgotten” will explore the history of the cemetery and the pioneers that call it their final resting place.
Olson will also lead tours of the cemetery at Newcastle Days Sept. 7. The narrated tours begin at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. During the break in between the two tours, families that have a connection to the cemetery are encouraged to share their stories with Olson, she said.
The Newcastle Historical Society will also provide a display of photographs featuring the cemetery and artifacts from Newcastle historian Milt Swanson’s personal collection. The photographs can be found in the library’s meeting room during September.
If you go
Newcastle Historical Society programs
All free presentations begin at 7 p.m. at the Newcastle Library, 12901 Newcastle Way
“Newcastle doesn’t have much in the way of visible artifacts,” Segner said. “The only structures are the Baima House and the cemetery. We’re trying really hard to help people understand the significance of those features.”
The Baima House is the last remaining building associated with Newcastle’s early mining history. It is among the oldest buildings in King County.