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David S. Troy


No history of the Olympic peninsula and Clallam and Jefferson counties would be complete were there failure to make reference to David S. Troy and the prominent part which he played in developing the dairy industry and in shaping the political and civic history of Chimacum and the state. He was to the time of his death manager and one of the directors of the Glendale Creamery. His birth occurred at Dungeness, Washington. November 17, 1870, his parents being Smith and Laura (Weir) Troy. The father, a native of Pennsylvania, was among the early forty-niners who crossed the plains and endured the hardships that came to the early gold seekers of California. For some time he conducted successful mining operations in that state, prospecting and mining in California for several years. He went north at the time of the Cariboo excitement but remained there for only a year and in 1863 arrived in Clallam county, where he took up a homestead claim upon which he resided with his family until his death, which occurred in 1894, when he had reached the age of sixty-five years. He took a very active and prominent part in public affairs during territorial days, serving as a member of the legislature of 1879 and for twelve years was superintendent of schools of Clallam county, was county auditor for four years, and was later a member of the house in the second state legislature. His wife was born in Texas and is still living at the age of sixty-eight, her home being now in Olympia. In their family were five children, three sons and two daughters.

David S. Troy, who was the third in order of birth, attended school in Clallam county and afterward entered Olympia Collegiate Institute. He was graduated on the completion of a business course in 1891 and after his textbooks were put aside he tilled the position of deputy county clerk of Clallam county for a year. He then removed to Port Townsend and secured a position as bookkeeper in the Merchants National Bank, serving in that capacity for seven years, at the end of which time he was given charge of the Ladd estate of large proportions, including extensive land holdings in Jefferson county, near Chimacum, and in the Chimacum valley. Mr. Troy immediately recognized something of what the future had in store for this vast farm in connection with dairying and the creamery business, and he interested others in his idea to establish a large creamery — an idea that gradually grew and crystallized into the Glendale Creamery Company in 1909. Since then the business has grown to be the largest in the entire west and one of the largest in the United States. Dairying is today one of the leading industries of the Olympic peninsula and yet it may be said that dairying is still in its infancy in the counties of Jefferson and Clallam. More than thirty-five years ago dairying was established in both counties, but conditions were far different from at the present. The farmers did not own cattle of the dairy type at that time. The average cow would weigh from twelve to thirteen hundred pounds and the usual color was red with white spots. The cow browsed at will in the woods, for at that period few farmers had cleared and enclosed pastures for their stock, needing all of their cleared land in order to grow crops. Thus from early spring until late fall the cattle sought their food in the forests. With the arrival of calves in the spring, these were kept in a corral near the barn and the cow would be turned into the corral to be milked. The calf would take part of the milk, after which it would be tied to the fence and the remainder of the milk would be drawn into a pail for the family. Early in the milking period the cows would come home on time to feed the calves, but as the calf grew older and the milk less, the cow would get careless about returning and ofttimes would not be milked until nine or ten o'clock at night. Many interesting stories could be told about milking time in those early days when the cow, the calf and the boy featured in the work.

The incorporators of the Glendale Creamery Company many years ago realized what a wonderful dairy country the Olympic peninsula would become if developed along proper lines, and with this in view, in 1895 the Glendale Creamery was incorporated with headquarters at Chimacum and the work of developing dairy interests on the peninsula was begun. The company realized that it was necessary to bring about many changes and that the most important change was a good market, after which the outcome of the work would show for itself. Starting with the first plant on the Ladd farm at Chimacum, the business was gradually extended until the east slope of the peninsula was covered with the plants of the Glendale Creamery Company and became the real foundation of the dairy industry in this sction of the state. The company provides a market for every pound of milk or cream produced from the Quillayute country in Clallam county to Quilcene in Jefferson county, a distance of one hundred and twenty-five miles, and all along the line of operation they have financed many farmers and made it possible for them to pay for their homes and cattle and to develop beautiful and profitable dairy farms. The plan of cooperation with the farmers was instituted to the point of learning of the troubles that confronted the dairy farmer and assisting him in working out his difficulties. Too much credit cannot be given the Glendale Creamery Company for the work it has done to develop the dairying and livestock industry on the Olympic peninsula. It realized what was necessary to be done and did it. In all this undertaking Mr. Troy was the moving spirit. After utilizing the Ladd farms in the development of the dairy industry the work spread to other places in the county, with branches at various points. Today the plant of the company is one of the most practical and up-to-date creamery plants of the west. The farm is equipped with fine buildings and is stocked with pure bred Jersey cattle, while Berkshire hogs are also raised. The equipment of the creamery displays the last word in machinery and facilities of that character and also includes a cold storage plant, providing ample room for the storing of butter and cheese. The company manufactures ice for its own use and also some for the market. An ice cream manufacturing plant was also added and its volume of business has grown in notable measure in late years. In addition to the home plant the company now has branches at Port Townsend, Center, Quilcene, Dungeness, Port Angeles and Forks in Jefferson and Clallam counties and also branches at Everett, Seattle and Tacoma. Mr. Troy and his associates in the enterprise worked carefully and steadily toward the upbuilding of this great agricultural industry and laid a foundation for future advancement and success. They secured the best dairy animals in the world and put forth every possible effort to reach the highest standards of the business. The enterprise has not only proven a profitable one for the stockholders but has been of inestimable value and benefit to the farmers in general, and the development and growth of the undertaking and the conditions thereby induced are largely attributable to the efforts of Mr. Troy, the principal stockholder and manager, who from the beginning looked after the afifairs of the Glendale Creamery Company until untimely death called him.

On the 14th of November, 1893, at Port Townsend, Washington, Mr. Troy was united in marriage to Miss Annie Lindsay, her parents being Mr. and Mrs. David Lindsay, the former a well known pioneer who has passed away, while the latter still survives. Mr. and Mrs. Troy became the parents of five children, as follows: Iras, who was born at Port Townsend in 1894 and is a graduate of the Port Townsend high school and also of the State College; Glenna, whose birth occurred at Port Townsend in 1898 and who is also a graduate of the Port Townsend high school and is now a senior in the State College; Grace, who was born at Port Townsend in 1901 and is now attending public school in Pullman; David S., Jr., who was born at Port Townsend in December, 1904, and is also attending school at Pullman; and Margaret, who was born at Port Townsend in 1909 and attends school at Pullman.

Mr. Troy was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church and was a worthy exemplar of the Masonic fraternity, in which he held high rank, becoming a member of Nile Temple of the Mystic Shrine. He was also identified with the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He took a deep interest in all matters of citizenship and his careful consideration of the political issues and questions of the day together with the fact that he came of a democratic family led him to give his support to the democratic party. Local political interests led him to enter politics in 1906 and he was elected to the house of representatives on the citizens ticket. In 1910 he became a member of the state senate, representing Jefferson, Clallam and San Juan counties, serving for two terms. In 1912 his leadership had obtained such recognition that there was a strong demand from his associates that he become his party's candidate for governor, but he declined the honor. He was chairman of the appropriations committee in 1913 and took a very active part in much constructive legislation. He was urged to become a candidate to succeed himself and later to run for United States senator.

Death came to him as the result of an accident. After making a tour of his dairy plants in Jefferson and Clallam counties he was returning home, accompanied by his mother and Mr. and Mrs. Allen Weir, when his automobile ran off of the wharf at Port Townsend, precipitating the party into the bay, in which accident Senator Troy forfeited his life. No funeral held in the State of Washington has been more largely attended by notables from all parts of the northwest. At the burial were present Governor Ernest Lister, Lieutenant Governor Louis F. Hart and Speaker W. W. Conner. President E. O. Holland, of the State College of Pullman, and R. C. McCroskey, veteran regent of the college, were present, together with many senators and representatives, and the veteran banker, William M. Ladd, of Portland, Oregon, who was one of Mr. Troy's first employers and afterward interested with him in his dairying and creamery ventures. While a Clallam county party was motoring to Port Townsend to attend the funeral, they overtook an aged man walking along the Olympic highway, sixteen miles from Port Townsend. He explained that he had no other way to reach town but that he had determined to attend the funeral and was taken along by the party, to whom he told a simple story of Senator Troy's early kindness to him. It was a notable fact that people from every walk of life were in attendance — from the humblest employee on the Troy farms to the highest executive of the state — and with the Masonic funeral service his remains were interred. Perhaps no citizen of Jefferson county has done more active work in promoting the progress and upbuilding of this section than did David S. Troy, whose development of business interests constituted a vast source of prosperity for his fellow townsmen as well as himself, while his political efforts aided in shaping the history of his state. He stood for all that is highest in the educational, political and moral life of the community and what he accomplished represented the fit utilization of his time and talents. His friends feel that it may well be said of him:

"This was a man. Take him for all in all I shall not look upon his like again."

Source: Washington, west of the Cascades; historical and descriptive; the explorers, the Indians, the pioneers, the modern; (Volume 2); by Herbert Hunt; Publisher: Chicago, Seattle, etc., The S. J. Clarke publishing company; 1917.

 
Deb Nelson, Webmaster and County Coordinator