Bars where Pete has had a Drink (5,812 bars; 1,754 bars in Seattle) - Click titles below for Lists:

Bars where Pete has had a drink

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

#2137 - The Whistling Post, Skykomish, WA - 4/19/2013

I first made it to this historic bar in the old railroad stop town of Skykomish three weeks after some knucklehead burned it down in the early morning of April 10th, 2012, in an attempt to cover his tracks after he sawed open the ATM machine to get to the $3300 inside. I returned in April the next year, about three months after the owners opened the rebuilt version in January 2013. There were pleasant people inside happy to talk about it, and the bartender even called the owner Charlie Brown to come over and give me a little history. Charlie and his wife Theora "Teddy" Ryder are only the 4th set of owners in the bar's history, with Teddy purchasing the place in 1980.  A photo in the bar shows a very young Teddy in front of the bar with her schoolmates, with a thought balloon added to show her thinking she's going to buy the joint some day.

A bar first opened on this spot in 1897, constructed and run by Patrick McEvoy, who had been the engineer of the first train scheduled to go through Skykomish on June 18, 1893. At that time it was The Olympia, which itself burned down along with most of downtown Skykomish in 1904. Rebuilt in 1905, conflicting accounts I have found have it being renamed the Whistling Post either at the time it was rebuilt after the fire, or just after prohibition by Brian Thompson, who owned the bar from 1934 to 1968. (A whistling post is a marker along the side of the tracks which informs the engineer to blow the whistle before an upcoming crossing.) The location made it through the prohibition years as the Maple Leaf Confectionery, and Charlie says it was also a card room and dance hall.

The locals were very pleased to see the old place rebuilt, and many of them helped in the effort, including assembling the antique, oak back bar Teddy and Charlie purchased in Omaha, Nebraska. I had a pleasant chat with customer Bob, who moved up to these parts about five years ago, after retiring from the carpenters union, and took in the historic photos on the walls. I must admit that I would prefer the dark, woody, divey old place I see in some of the older photos to the bright, neatly-wallboarded new version, but I'm glad to see the place up and running and with the exterior built to match the old building.

116 Railroad Ave E, Skykomish, WA 98288 - (360) 677-2333
Est. Jan 27, 2013 (current building, previous bar est. 1897) - Building constructed: 2013
Previous bars in this location: The Olympia
Articles: seattletimesskyvalleychronicle - skykomishhistoricalsociety - king5 - arlingtondepot - yelp

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

August 2018: Claimed to be originally 1903. A great replica place with purchased old back bar and many historical photos. Owned by a hometown boy, the retired gypo logger, Charlie Brown. Right on the railroad line.