Hellgate in the News

Submitted by Marge Womach  

Also see photo of Hellgate School 1910

See:  Hellgate Panarama

1882 Layton Post Office established for six months. Post master, Lester S Bagley. Reopened in 1891 with Henry S. Wynhoff in charge, yet as Layton, and later renamed as Hellgate in 1898 under John G. Penix. This site as a post office was totally discontinued in 1914.

1888 Henry Wynhoff settled at Hellgate.

1892 Nearest Cemetery established at Sherman.

1894 Wynhoff mercantile store was converted into a hotel.

1899 Saw Mill at Hellgate nearly destroyed by fire. 

“Mr. Joe Thomas, of Hell Gate, is disposing of four loads of fruit, melons and vegetables per week. He sold more than thirty boxes of tomatoes one trip. His method of raising early vegetables is worth knowing.” (LCT: 9-30-1902)

Milo Cox in History of Big Bend-1904 shows his address as Hellgate.

“At Hellgate some unknown person or persons, with evil intent, placed rocks in the top of wheat ricks belonging to Jim Tuft and Ray Penix, with the result that John Campbell’s thresher sustained considerable damage when the stones mixed with the cylinder.” (Citizen: 9-10-1909)

“Hellgate.—We have had several nice, refreshing rains this week which have settled the dust and started gardens and wheat, also the weeds, to growing. ** Cornelius Turner left for Davenport Friday, where he was called to act as a juror.** J. M. Penix and daughter made a business trip to Wilbur Wednesday.** Misses Mae Scheibner and Elsie Haas, two high school girls, drove out from Wilbur Sunday and made a pleasant call at the home of the latter.** Mrs. L. E. Cox and son-in-law, A R Wolfe, purchased the D Gillespie ranch this week. Mr. Gillespie and family expect to make their future home in Alberta.” (Davenport Tribune: 5-15-1913)

“Hellgate, Aug 9.—Mrs. P. B. Hass, who has spent the past six weeks in Spokane, returned to her home Sunday evening.** Mr. Francis Benham of Spokane is visiting his mother, Mrs. S. Tweddale, this week.** J. G. Penix, Florence and Glen Penix, and Miss Nora Widby, spent Sunday at the Cox-Wolfe home.** Miss Margaret Stutz of Spokane is visiting.” (excerpt Davenport Tribune: 8-14-1913)

“Hell Gate.—Mrs. J. P. Tufts is suffering severely with rheumatism this week.** Leo White of Wilbur spent the past week at the Penix home.** J H Robertson, who has been very ill with typhoid fever, is able to be out again we are glad to say.** Miss Mae Scheibner, who has been visiting Elsie Haas, returned to her home in Wilbur Monday.** Russell Robertson is suffering from an abscess in his ear this week, he is under the care of Dr Yount of Wilbur.** Miss Marie Doose of Spokane is progressing nicely with her school at Hell Gate, this is her second term in the school. She is well liked by everyone. ** Mr. and Mrs. J. Gollenhon and children were guests at the Tufts home Sunday.** Miss Florence Penix, who has been visiting friends in Wilbur, returned home Sunday evening.** D Gillespie made a business trip to Wilbur Tuesday.” (LCT: 10-23-1913)

“Narrow Escape.—Hell Gate, Aug 1.—J. M. Penix and son, Glen, went down to Clark last Friday with a four horse team to get a load of lumber and while returning home, they were just at the top of a very steep hill when the brake block came off, one of the wheel horses refused to hold back, this frightened the leaders and the four of them ran about a quarter of a mile, when the leaders broke loose and jerked all of the lines from the hands of the driver, he finally succeeded in securing the lines again and got the team stopped. They found the leaders that night about six miles from home standing by the road. Very little damage was done, the harness was broken in only two places.  Glen stayed on the wagon through it all, while his father stood rooted to the spot where they left him when he got off to fix the brake. They consider themselves lucky when they think what might have happened.” (Davenport Tribune: 8-06-1914)

“Hellgate, Aug 1.—The thermometer registered 100 in the shade Thursday and Friday, July 30 and 31, those being the hottest days this summer.** Miss Florence Penix, who has been very ill with a severe attack of stomach trouble, is much better at this writing.** A R Wolfe has been hauling out apricots and peach plums to the Wilbur market this week.** Leo Martin and Henry Miller were down the canyon on business Wednesday.** Wm Flanagan is working on the Peterson-Haas combined harvester.** Quite a number have started harvesting.** Miss Ethel Brown of Springdale, Wash, has been employed to teach the Sunny Slope school the coming term. Miss Lucile Hill of Harrington will teach the Hellgate school. ** Dr Oderkirk and Ri Ettenborough were visitors at the home of L. Ettenborough Wednesday, they came down in the doctor’s car.** Beginning with next Sunday Rev E. A. Penich will preach at the Sunny Slope school house every two weeks.** Mr. S. Tweddale and step-daughter, Essie Benham, came out from Wilbur Wednesday to look after their ranch for a few days. Mr. Tweddale is much improved in health.** J. M. Penix lost a valuable colt this week.” (Davenport Tribune: 8-06-1914)

“Hellgate.—May 9. Mrs. Lena Haas departed this life at her home 15 miles north of Wilbur on May 5th, after a severe illness of several months. The body was laid to rest in the Sherman Cemetery, the Rev Broadlooks of Wilbur delivering the funeral sermon. A loving wife, a good mother and an accommodating neighbor, this kind friend has paid the debt we all owe and has answered the call to come up higher. She is survived by her husband, 3 daughters, 2 sons and 2 grand children.” (Davenport Tribune: 5-11-1916)

“Hellgate News. Hell Gate , Nov 25.—There were numerous cases of influenza around this part of the country the past two weeks but no serious cases.  Dennis Byrne is very ill at his home with heart trouble.  Sylvester Houck of Cheney visited the Penix family the middle of last week.  Miss Sara Tytherleigh returned from Spokane Saturday evening and resumed her work as teacher of the Hellgate school.  Miss Florence Penix was a Spokane visitor the latter part of last week.  Miss Gladys Riedman of Spokane is teaching the Sunny Slope School .  R C Portch was a visitor at the Robertson home Sunday.  Mrs B M White and babe and P B Haas, Larean and Lonnie Haas were visitors at the home of A M Martin, Sunday.  Mr and Mrs D L Wolfe and family of Almira spent the week end at the Cox-Wolfe  home.  Chas Robertson enlisted with the marines some time ago and left last Thursday for Mare Island , CA .” (Davenport Times-Tribune: 11-28-1918)

“Party Visits Hell Gate .  An auto party composed of Mr .and Mrs. R. G. Turner, Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Hambright, Mr. and Mrs. Ed Lamp and Mr .and Mrs. Elmer Houck, visited the Columbia River north of here Sunday and spent some time pondering the immensity of the power passing by those Hell Gate rocks, and watching the many currents and counter currents, as well as whirlpools in the channel of the river at that point last Sunday. Returning they stopped at Creston’s auto camp ground for refreshments and a brief rest, but as it was after dark, and the electric light globe had been burned out, it was hard to find accommodations of the strange camp in the dark. A delegation hunted up someone who directed them to find the marshal, and stated that he would provide them with a light globe. Finally they located the marshal at the pool hall and putting the situation before him, he said, ‘Why, sure, go buy one’.  ‘Well’, said the head of the committee, ‘where can I buy one?’  ‘Oh, you can get one at the hardware store in the morning—they are closed now’.  With this light on the subject, the benighted committee returned to the hospitable (?) camp grounds, where they ran one of their cars into the right position and turned on their headlights while the ladies prepared lunch, much chagrined at the treatment accorded travelers at the Creston auto camp grounds and the next time they stop there it will be at the invitation of necessity when they are hopelessly out of gas.” (Citizen: 7-25-1924)Added Oct, 2010.

Cox:  “Mr. and Mrs. Milo Cox located northeast of the Condon ranch in 1886. The son, Charles, died many years ago but the three daughters are living—Mrs. A. S. Campbell, wife of the pioneer Clark orchardist; Mrs. Arthur Wolfe, of Sherman, with whom the mother makes her home; and Mrs. Luella Wolfe, of California.”  (Wilbur Golden Jubilee: 6-22-1939)

Wynhoff:  Henry Wynhoff arrived in Washington Territory in 1888 and located on the Columbia River at Hellgate. Later he moved to Peach Valley where he had 800 acres, diversifying with hay, pasture, orchards and berries. There were several children in the family, one of whom is Mrs. Addie Cole, Seattle, wife of Charles Cole, former editor of The Register and later with the Spokesman Review and the Seattle Star. Another is Walter Wynhoff, who farms in the Swawilla basin near Keller.  Hubert Wynhoff, brother of Henry, arrived about the same time and located near Sherman. He, too, had a large family, one of whom, Mary, was the first wife of E. T. Hay, and another, Blanche, was the first wife of Clyde Jones.”  (Edit: Henry S. Wynhoff was born in 1849 and died in 1920. His wife Mary D was born in 1851 and died in 1931. Henry G. Wynhoff was born in 1869 and died in 1926. These and other family members were buried in the Sherman Cemetery.) (Wilbur Golden Jubilee: 6-22-1939)

 Submitted to the Lincoln County, WashingtonGenWeb project by Marge Womach, January 25, 2009. Updated 2010.