Travels with Grace: Washington State, 1924

Posted on March 19th, 2019 by

Welcome to the next segment of our 2019 #TravelTuesday series: Traveling with Grace. Today Grace heads to Washington State!


Tacoma and water-front, view from Tacoma Building, c. 1919. Courtesy of the Library of Congress.

August 3, 1924: Left Portland this morning at 10 o’clock and arrived in Tacoma at 3:10 P.M. Went to Hotel Tacoma very prettily situated overlooking Puget Sound. Our room faces a beautiful little garden and there is a lovely vine shaded porch heading down to the garden, a rustic summer house, big holly tree, pool of goldfish and huge birdcage with 8 canaries. We rode around Tacoma from 5 to 6:30 P.M. The city although smaller than Portland, has a wonderful harbor and industries similar to the former city. It has a thriving air and there is much building going on. We saw some very beautiful homes, including a number of solid stone structures quite unusual for this part of the country. The flowers are more profuse and varied than those in Portland and the schools are quite imposing like those in Calif. One of these (begun for a hotel) has a remarkable stadium overlooking Commencement Bay. The Scottish Rite Temple is another fine building. Two beautiful parks are Point Defiance with a fine collection of animals, birds and flowers and Wright Park with fine trees and shrubs, the gift of an old lady.

Rainier National Park

Foot of the Nisqually Glacier and source of the Nisqually River, Mt. Tacoma or Rainier, Washington, 1906. Courtesy of the Library of Congress.

August 4-7, 1924: Was up at 5:30 this morning and saw the sun rise. We started out in the bus at 8 A.M. for Mt. Rainier. It is a glorious morning clear and very cool. The roads are perfect, bordered by hills and the densest timber. At 11 A.M. we arrived at Longmire Springs hotel for lunch and from here on the scenery grows more and more magnificent. We had a fine view of the Nisquali Glacier, which they say is constantly receding. It is a huge mass of grayish ice seemed with deep crevasses lying in the elbow of the mt. with water gurgling beneath it. Narada Falls is one of the first we saw a mighty rushing torrent leaping form a great height. Then we saw the Washington Cascade Falls which falls down one ledge of rock to another for many miles. Also Pearl Falls. The first view we had of the top of Mt. Rainier just before we stopped for lunch, called forth the first shower of exclamations and a little further on was what our driver told us is called “oh My! Point.”

New Paradise Inn, Mt. Rainier National Park, c. 1918. Photo by Keystone View Company, courtesy of the Library of Congress.

We arrived at Paradise Valley at 2 P.M. We climbed 3000 ft. in 4 miles. At Paradise Inn we find ourselves in a little green, flower starred valley between two ranges of snow-capped mts., the Cascade and Tatoosh. The wild flowers are beautiful, red, blue, pink, lavender, purple, yellow and white. In front of the Inn is Mt. Rainier, 14,500 ft. like a proud monarch with a pearly crown lording it over all of the lesser peaks. The clouds of mist pass backwards and forth over its surface as though they were playing hide and seek. There is a column of steam rising constantly which they say comes from an extinct volcano. In the rear of the Inn is a very pretty fall of water known as Sluiskin Falls. The deer and chipmunks scamper thru the camp and are very tame. The interior of the “Inn” is attractively decorated with logs and thick wooden beams. Everything possible is constructed of wood even the drinking fountain and mail box are hollowed out of the stumps of trees. Some of the tables and chairs made of Alaskan white cedar are very pretty as this wood takes on a beautiful glossy polish making it look as if it were enameled.

Mt. Ranier, c. 1925. Photo by Haines Photo Co., courtesy of the Library of Congress.

We passed a grove of these trees on our way up. It is called the Ghost Forest as nearly all of the trees are dead, and they look like they are covered with frost. There is always a big log fire burning at either end of the long lobby and the warmth is quite acceptable. Today we met some old friends, Mr. and Mrs. Goldsmith of Washington, and spent some time chatting with them. Mother and father took a hike up the mountain this morning and brought me back a snow ball. I stayed in the Inn and talked to a Mr. Garner from Newport News. In the evening there is a very nice entertainment, instructive pictures in the Guide’s House followed by songs and dancing in the main building. Everyone tells us we have been exception, really lucky in having such perfect weather all the time we have been here, as just before we came there were four gloomy days when the mountain was not to be seen. At times the mts. look very red as tho splashed with a dark rust-colored paint. That is the iron ore. The mt. streams are milky in color due to the constant churning of the waters. But the little lakes here and there are as clear as crystal and reflect everything about them.

We left the Inn at 3 P.M. The ride down was slightly different form the upward trip. The further one descends, the mightier the mt. looks up above and one gets a more comprehensive view of it. We reached Tacoma at 6 P.M. and continued on thru Puyallup a fine fruit and berry country, past some lovely farm and dairy country and arrived at Seattle at 8 P.M. Had dinner at the New Washington.


Pergola, Volunteer Park, Seattle, 1920.  Courtesy of Seattle Municipal Archives via.

August 8, 1924: Met Cousin Nathan Hecht at the Washington this morning. We moved to the Hotel Townan[?]. This afternoon we had a very interesting ride thru the city, the downtown business section, big community markets, lovely department stores, then out to the residential district in the north and northwestern direction and high up on the hills. The situation is quite similar to San Francisco. We saw the Government canal and locks connecting Lakes Union and Washington, both fresh water lakes but connected with the ocean thru Puget sound. The locks are built after the plan of those at Panama only much smaller. The homes here as elsewhere in the west are broad, with large porches and flower gardens. Mountain ash trees abound. We rode thru the campus of the University of Washington, 153 acres, with buildings in the Tudor-Gothic style. Also a big log cabin built of Douglas firs left from the Exposition. Not a single nail was driven in this building, the whole having been put together with wooden pegs. We rode thru Volunteer Park a pretty artificial park with sunken flower gardens, Japanese tea gardens, a zoo, etc. and Woodland Park. We passed a big cedar lumber mill and saw how the lumber is graded and sorted. The aroma from the drying boards is very pleasant. Tonight we saw a movie, “The Signal Tower.” Seattle is beautifully illuminated at night, electricity being exceedingly cheap around here.

August 9, 1924: This morning Mrs. Jack Kaufman and her daughter Adalheit called on us. We took dinner at the Washington. This evening went to a movie. Saw Valentino in “Monsieur Beaucaire.” The picture houses in Seattle are very pretty and they have excellent music. Met a very nice lady (Mrs. Blum) with Cousin Nathan Hecht.

Lake Washington Boulevard, 1920s. Photo by Asahel Curtis via.

August 10, 1924: Mrs. Kaufman and her son Winfield took us for a drive this afternoon along Lake Washington Boulevard and thru Seattle’s finest residential districts. The homes are very beautiful embellished with landscape gardening. There is excellent swimming in the lake and everywhere [unreadable word???] auto tourist camps here. On our way back to town we drove thru Seattle’s Chinatown. They have a Chinese Opera House here. Mrs. K. is a brilliant woman and I enjoyed my conversation with her. Seattle’s population is a little over 300,000 and it is much livelier than Portland tho not much bigger. It is framed in the Olympic and Cascade ranges with a network of lakes all about it. There is one lovely big department store, Frederick and Nelson’s, and a wonderful market.

Thanks for reading “Traveling with Grace,” a series where we’re sharing (and annotating) posts from the travel diaries of Grace Amelia Hecht, native Baltimorean, b. 1897 and d. 1955. As mentioned in my introductory post transcription errors sometimes occur and I’ve made my best guesses where possible, denoted by [brackets]. – Rachel Kassman, marketing manager


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Travels with Grace: Oregon, 1924

Posted on March 12th, 2019 by

Welcome to the next segment of our 2019 #TravelTuesday series: Traveling with Grace. Today Grace heads to Oregon.

En Route to Portland

Mt. Shasta, c. 1899. Created by Detroit Publishing Co., courtesy of the Library of Congress.

July 27, 1924: It was quite warm on the train during the day but grew cool towards evening and our stateroom was cool all night. I say out on the observation platform for about five hours. The first place of interest we passed this morning was Castle Crags, a huge mass of rugged towers and turrets like a ghostly fortress looming up against the sky. We rode for several hours along the Sacramento river. A little later on we came to a succession of small waterfalls and cascades known as Shasta Springs and here I tasted the water something like apolanaris, with plenty of soda in it. At 12:15 P.M. we came in sight of Mt. Shasta 14,400 odd ft. elevation, standing out distinct on every side, with a little snow on its crest. Across from this is another mt. a little less in height and cone shaped called Black Butte and although they say it often snows on it no snow even remains upon it owing they claim to its warm temperature and volcanic origin. Mr. Shasta was visible for several hours first on one side of us then the other as the train curved around until finally it faded away in the distance. At Ashland we saw the Lythia springs right across from the station. Much of northern California and southeastern Oregon is extremely arid.

Lithia Water at the railroad station on “A” street, c. 1915. Courtesy of the Terry Skibby Collection. City of Ashland.


Downtown Portland, c. 1924 (SW Morrison Street). City of Portland (OR) Archives, A2004-002.582, via.

July 28, 1924: Arrived in Portland at 7:15 A.M. and took breakfast at the station. Then came here to the Multnomah Hotel. After luncheon we took an auto ride thru the business and residential sections of the city, in the latter district many of the sidewalks are lined with the pink and red rose bushes for which Portland is noted, and there are many other flowers as well. Some of the points of interest shown us were: Municipal Auditorium, Forestry Building (a huge log cabin in ornamental design, reminder of Lewis and Clark Exposition), the city park of about 20 acres attractively laid out with flower beds, hilly and wooded with zoo and recreation grounds where we saw the bronze statues “Coming of the White Man” and “Sacajawea.” From Kings Heights, a fine residential district, we had a splendid panoramic view of the city below, the Willamette and Columbia rivers in the foreground bonding the peninsula of East Portland (to which we crossed afterward on the bridge) and the mts. in the distance.

Vista House, southwest elevation. Courtesy of the Library of Congress.

July 29, 1924: We left at 9:30 A.M. for the Columbia River Highway going first along the Sandy Blvd, which skirts the Sandy river, a shallow yellow stream emptying into the Columbia. On entering the highway we stopped at the Vista House, a round ornamental stone structure built as a memorial to the Oregon pioneers, where an excellent view is had of the Columbia in both directions and across to the state of Washington which is separated from Oregon by this river. A remarkable engineering feat of this highway is what is known as the figure 8 consisting of eight loops in the road. The first falls we meet are the Latourell. Next we come to a little park known as Shepperd’s Dell, bought by a man of that name as a memorial to his wife, here is another beautiful waterfall, rocks, trees, farms, and flowers. Beyond this is Mushroom Rock otherwise known as Bishop’s Cay on account of its shape. The huge rocks along the way are interesting because of their composition which is plainly visible, they are composed of many kinds of mineral deposits crushed in bits by mighty glaciers, then welded together under pressure of intense heat in the geological periods. Bridal Veil Falls has been disrupted into flumes by a lumber company. On our way up we saw the logs being driven along the flumes to the river below and coming back we saw part of the water restored to its natural course, the work having stopped for the day. Mist Falls as its name indicates, resembles a shower of fine spray. Then there are [Dablon?], Wahkeena and Multnomah Falls, the latter the biggest in U.S. next to the Yosemite, and Horsetail Falls, named because of the peculiar turns it takes in its descent. Oneonta Gorge is a narrow ravine between perpendicular walls of moss and fern covered rocks thru which a little stream runs from a fall ¼ mile back of the highway. St. Peter’s Dome rears its rounded surface high above the surrounding cliffs on the highway and in front of it is Cathedral Column, a petrified tree is to be seen close the the road. We visited a salmon and a rainbow trout hatchery, saw a fish wheel and fed the trout rolls, they are ravenous eaters. After lunch at the Columbia Gorge we went up to Hood river and saw the famous apple orchards. From here can be seen Mts. Hood and Ada, both capped with snow. Passed under Mitchell [Point] tunnel with its [????], all blown out of the solid rock, a very beautiful piece of work. From the Gorge Hotel can be seen the cascades of the Columbia around which the government has constructed locks. It is 200 ft. above the river set in a beautiful park overlooking Wah-Gwin-Gwin Falls, a finer view is to be had of the palisades on the opposite side of the river. Hops and loganberries from a large percentage of the crops raised in Oregon.

Salem, Oregon

Bird’s eye view of Salem, Oregon before 1912. Image via.

July 30, 1924: Took the stage at 10: A.M. for Salem. A very pretty ride along the Willamette River as far as Oregon City a big lumber center. Saw many log booms along the river. Also passed thru Oswego City. Road splendid all the way to Salem, a distance of 50 miles. On the stage we met a Mr. Director who keeps a clothing store in Salem, and after we ate our lunch in a pretty little restaurant called the Gray Bell, he and his wife gave us a ride around the town in their car. The Capitol, [Boat?] House, Post Office, are all five buildings set in a beautiful park. We saw the state institutions for the insane, deaf, dumb and blind as well as the state penitentiary all surrounded by well kept lawns and flower gardens kept up by the inmates. All the people in these little towns have such a lot of civic pride and the wide, clean streets, neat houses and flowery gardens attest to it. Our man on the street who heard us admire the town stopped us and said, “You get this is a fine city and I hope you’ll stop here.” We took the stage back at 3:00 P.M. and arriving at the hotel found a lovely basket of fruit and box of delicious homemade candies from the Feldenheimers. Cousins Flora and Charlie called on us tonight. They are such lovely cordial people and extended us every hospitality. They are highly thought of in the community as many people have told us.


Council Crest Amusement Park, 1926. Courtesy of the City of Portland, via.

July 31, 1924: Cousin Flora and her son Elmer called for us in their car this afternoon and took us for a drive thru Portland’s better residential sections among which Portland Heights is one of the most attractive. The homes are very pretty, some stucco but most are frame, with lovely gardens and vine covered porches. The flowers grow everywhere in greatest profusion. We rode up to Council Crest the highest boulevard around the city where beautiful panoramas are unfolded below. We stopped at Cousin Flora’s home and she served us delicious refreshments. Elmer is a rather quiet young man but seems to be well educated. Tonight his cousin Paul came to see us at the hotel.

Preliminary plan for Peninsula Park, 1909. City of Portland (OR) Archives, A2013-007, 1909, via.

August 1, 1924: This afternoon father and I took the street car and rode to Peninsula Park. Here is a very pretty sunken rose garden but it is not at its best now as the bushes are somewhat overgrown. There are also excellent playgrounds in this park as there are in almost every section of the city. There are a number of public tennis courts and Portland has one fine athletic club with a stadium all its own. Most of the homes are 2 or 3 floors high but there are also quite a few bungalows. Along the streets are a number of mountain ash trees, most decorative with their thick round clusters of wax-like red berries and bright green leaves and smooth, satiny bark. Cousin Flora sent us a bunch of varie-colored cosmos today.

August 2, 1924: Cousin Flora sent me a big box of candies made of puffed rice and molasses. She came to see us this afternoon and brought us each a little gift from the store. Elmer dropped in for a few minutes before dinner. After dinner we talked a while with the Misses Rotholz and their father who have just come from Alaska. Later Cousin Rose F., her husband and son Paul, Cousin Flora and her husband came and spent the evening with us. Cousin Rose brought us more candy. The Feldenheimers have a very nice jewelry store in Portland. Some of the stores are very pretty but in the older business sections there are some wooden buildings which have a very ancient air. In some streets are big piles of slab and cord wood drying to burn. Lumber and salmon are the city’s chief industries.

Paul Feldenheimer polishes stones at the A. Feldenheimer Jeweler and Goldsmith store in Portland, OR, c. 1920. Courtesy of the Washington State University Libraries.

Thanks for reading “Traveling with Grace,” a series where we’re sharing (and annotating) posts from the travel diaries of Grace Amelia Hecht, native Baltimorean, b. 1897 and d. 1955. As mentioned in my introductory post transcription errors sometimes occur and I’ve made my best guesses where possible, denoted by [brackets]. – Rachel Kassman, marketing manager


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Travels with Grace: San Francisco, 1924 Part 2

Posted on March 5th, 2019 by

Welcome to the next segment of our 2019 #TravelTuesday series: Travels with Grace. Today Grace returns to San Francisco.

San Francisco

Sing Fat Co. building illuminated, c. 1920s. Courtesy of OpenSFHistory.

July 22, 1924: They welcomed us back to the Whitcomb most cordially. This morning we did some necessary shopping at the Emporium, a very fine store. Then went to Chinatown where we went thru Sing Fat’s, a most interesting Chinese bazaar and made a few purchases. We walked up the street for several blocks and went in a number of shops to look at the lovely ivories, china, lacquer and inlaid furniture, embroideries, rugs, bronzes, mandarin suits and very odd jewelry. Had supper at the Grand View Hotel, a most attractive Chinese restaurant but I didn’t care much for the Chinese food. From what I have seen of the Chinamen here they are very polite and painstaking, not evincing the slightest disappointment when one doesn’t buy and seem most efficient as servants.

Dutch Windmill, c. 1910. Courtesy of OpenSFHistory.

July 23, 1924: Took a ride thru Golden Gate Park today, a wonderful park considering that it is artificial, all laid out by the hand of man. There are beautiful trees, shrubs and flowers, on the beach side there are the queer shaped cypress trees like we saw at Monterey, looking like the wind and blown and twisted them in its fury and they have remained thus deformed, dead on the side where the cold ocean breeze strikes them and green on the inner or sheltered side. There is an old Dutch windmill used for pumping up the water to irrigate the gardens. A beautiful dome arch or pergola still stands, a solitary survivor of the earthquake. We saw the buffalo and deer, the lake full of ducks and black swans with red bills swimming around us dismayed by the row boats that skim past them. We went in the aquarium and saw some [???] specimens of fish, shells, turtles and water reptiles. Watched the sea lions being fed. Then walked to the Japanese Gardens, set off from the rest of the park by a high wall and looking like a transplanted bit of old Japan with its bridges, streams and little waterfalls, dwarf trees, flowers set out in oriental pots, temples, bells, pagodas, bronze mythological statues, etc. We had tea and rice cakes in the tea house served in the Japanese style. In front of the garden is a fine large Spreckel’s band stand with hundreds of seats beneath straight rows of low handing shade trees. For dinner we went to Marquard’s where we saw a pretty good cabaret.

The Steinhart Aquarium, Golden Gate Park, July 1, 1926. Courtesy of OpenSFHistory.

July 24, 1924: Went to the Fairmont for dinner tonight and spent a very pleasant evening with Mr. and Mrs. Irving Wiel (Cousin Elsa) and their son.

Santa Cruz

“The Casa Del Rey Hotel, 300 modern rooms of hospitality located in a Spanish garden at the beach in Santa Cruz, California” – postcard, c. 1928. [Santa Cruz Public Libraries].

July 25, 2924: Left on the stage at 9:30am for Santa Cruz stopping en route at Los Gatos a pretty little county resort and arrived at Santa Cruz at 12:45. The ride was very interesting as we went thru numerous little towns and the road wound up the mts. affording many lovely views. Took lunch at the Casa del Rey (Santa Cruz’s leading hotel and quite an attractive one) in a sunny dining room surrounded by an open court full of hydrangea bushes. After lunch we strolled about the casino, a sort of midway built out on the beach. It was an animated sight to watch the bathers, water craft and hydroplanes, the various concessions along the little boardwalk. It is a popular resort for the middle class. There is one of the finest indoor pools here that I have even seen. At 3:00 P.M. we again took the stage and arrived back in San Francisco at 6:15pm. Found a lovely box of candies in our room from Cousin Elsa. Tonight we listened to a fine concert at the hotel. At my request Mr. Ben[?] played the Scheherazade Suite from Rimsky-Korsakov.

San Francisco

July 26, 1924: Carrie Loeb and her sister Adele called on us this afternoon. It was very pleasant to renew our acquaintance after a lapse of ten years. Carrie hasn’t changed but she thought I had changed a great deal. She seems quite sad but her sister is very lively and animated. Today we met a Mrs. Wilkinson at the hotel (formerly Mrs. Loerthrn??? of Balto.) and she was very pleasant. We got on the train for Portland at 9:13 P.M.

Thanks for reading “Traveling with Grace,” a series where we’re sharing (and annotating) posts from the travel diaries of Grace Amelia Hecht, native Baltimorean, b. 1897 and d. 1955. As mentioned in my introductory post transcription errors sometimes occur and I’ve made my best guesses where possible, denoted by [brackets]. – Rachel Kassman, marketing manager


Posted in jewish museum of maryland

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