‘Little giant’ makes Newcastle’s history come to life

January 7, 2015

NEW — 6 a.m. Jan. 7, 2015

Time is running out for residents to experience Newcastle’s history up close and personal at the Renton History Museum.

The “Newcastle: Little Giant of the Eastside” exhibit debuted Sept. 9 and is set to run until Feb. 7 at the Renton History Museum. It features pictures, maps and objects, most on loan courtesy of the Newcastle Historical Society, from Newcastle’s coal-mining past.

There are features about the still-standing Baima House and the Newcastle Cemetery, as well as a wall-sized present-day map pinpointing several historical locations.

The artifacts range from mining tools to wine-making devices, because, as collections manager Sarah Samson noted, “there were a lot of Italians” in Newcastle.

Learn more at www.rentonwa.gov/rentonhistorymuseum.

2014 was a year of change for Newcastle

January 2, 2015

In 2014, the city of Newcastle celebrated a birthday, lost an icon and set the stage for the future. Here are some of the top stories of the year, in no particular order:

Newcastle pioneer Milt Swanson passes away

Family, neighbors and community leaders gathered Jan. 25 to honor the life of Milt Swanson, a titan of Newcastle history and a man with an unceasing, warming smile.

The Newcastle pioneer, born and raised in this community, spent all of his 95 years in the same area, 90 of which were in the same company house that still stands at the edge of town near the Cougar Mountain trailhead. Read more

‘Little giant’ makes history come to life

October 3, 2014

By Greg Farrar Rich Crispo, Newcastle councilman, stands next to a display case with Milt Swanson's coal miner helmet and an information poster honoring the late 95-year-old Newcastle native's contributions to preserving the city's history. The Renton History Museum's Newcastle retrospective exhibit is on display until Feb. 7.

By Greg Farrar
Rich Crispo, Newcastle councilman, stands next to a display case with Milt Swanson’s coal miner helmet and an information poster honoring the late 95-year-old Newcastle native’s contributions to preserving the city’s history. The Renton History Museum’s Newcastle retrospective exhibit is on display until Feb. 7.

The first thing visitors see upon walking into the Renton History Museum’s Newcastle exhibit is, appropriately, a tribute to a man that means so much to the city’s history. Read more

Get to know your city

October 3, 2014

The city celebrated its 20th year of incorporation in September, but locals know, at least they should, that Newcastle’s story goes back much farther than that.

Newcastle’s coal-mining history dates back to the mid 1800s, when the city was second only to Seattle in population.

The Newcastle mining site operated for about 100 years, until the mid-1900s. Workers extracted nearly 11 million tons of coal during that period.

Vestiges of that history remain scattered across the city in the form of landmarks such as the Baima House, a century-old company house that used to house miners and their families, and the Newcastle Cemetery, the final resting place for a number of Newcastle pioneers. Read more

Historical Society preps for busy September

August 29, 2014

Historical Society 2014

The Newcastle Historical Society is in for a busy September with programming at Newcastle Days, the Newcastle Library and the Renton History Museum. Read more