100 years ago
1916 — Oak Harbor News
n A well-known Native American pioneer woman known as “Squinty” died in Coupeville of lingering consumption. Squinty, whose tribal name was Whilatea, was over 100 years old at the time of her death, according to the best records available. According to her son-in-law Aleck Kettle, she had been born near the site of Coupeville and her ancestors were residents of “old Whidby.” Her first husband, Jim Scappoose, had been burned to death 40 years prior. Her second husband had died of consumption eight years prior. One of her four children survived her.
n Campaigns were underway for the presidential election. Many on Whidbey were championing the re-election of Woodrow Wilson.
n Bachelder and Corneil “Boys Store” advertised “many styles for school boys,” including fall hats and caps starting at 50 cents, and Mackinaw coats starting at $4.
75 years ago
1941 — Farm Bureau News
n A page-one article advertised an upcoming open house presented by John Tyhuis of Red and White Meats, who was celebrating a milestone in his business career, as well as the purchase of a new refrigerator showcase. The showcase was Tyhuis’ first business splurge since he went into business in 1933 and was said to “do proud to a large city meat market.”
n A prominent page-one notice welcomed hunters to Whidbey Island and asked that they “play fair” with the farmers, dairymen and turkey breeders, many of whom were hunters themselves. Requests included that hunters steer clear of farms with “no hunting” signs and avoid firing in the vicinity of livestock.
n The U.S. Navy Department officially approved the surveys being conducted in Crescent Harbor, and work on the Naval Air Station was to begin in one month. The base had an estimated construction budget of $3,790,000 and was expected to be complete in nine months.
n Maylor’s advertised red sweatshirts on sale for $1 and 14-inch hunter’s axes for 98 cents.
50 years ago
1966 — Whidbey News-Times
nNavy and civilian members of the Oak Harbor community met to discuss the housing problem in the city. Wes Maylor, president of the Oak Harbor Chamber of Commerce, said those investing in rental units needed assurance that Navy housing would not cause those units to become empty. Capt. Beecher Snipes, commanding officer at NAS Whidbey, told the housing committee that it was the Navy’s policy to encourage civilian rentals to the maximum extent. Snipes said the Navy did not intend to construct any base housing units unless there were not sufficient civilian units available within reasonable distance.
n Island County was invited to participate in a lecture-discussion series on regional planning at Western Washington State University in Bellingham. The series was planned by the university and civic and business leaders in the area with the intention of acquainting people concerned with regional planning in the area with the basic topics of regional development.
n Food-Town advertised vine ripe tomatoes at 19 cents per pound, frozen cream pies at 25 cents each and boneless rolled pork roast at 65 cents per pound.
25 years ago
1991 — Whidbey News-Times
n The Island County Sheriff’s Department was drastically understaffed and was having trouble attracting and retaining deputies. In recent years, several had left to pursue better-paying jobs in other counties, while those who stayed often put in 14- to 16-hour days. Two of the four detectives were indefinitely disabled. The staffing shortage was called an “extreme example” of the effect of a county budget crisis which had resulted in deep cuts in the sheriff department’s funding.
n Jeneth Spence gave birth to her second child while riding in a car en route to the hospital. Spence’s daughter, Stephanie, was born on Midway in Oak Harbor. The birth was unexpectedly quick compared to Spence’s firstborn, with whom she was in labor for 12 hours.
n A third-class petty officer and aviation metalsmith assigned to Naval Air Station Whidbey Island was arrested in connection with the death of his 11-month-old son. The boy died at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle from massive head injuries after being flown from Whidbey General Hospital.
n Looking Back is compiled by reporter Kate Daniel, firstname.lastname@example.org