Born 21 Dec.1862 St. Vincent Township, Grey County, Ontario Canada;
Died 15 Oct. 1948 Maxwelton. P.H. worked for a power company in Pasadena, CA., as a builder in Seattle and as a farmer and saw mill owner at Maxwelton. At one time he had 30 milking cows, 5,000 - 6,000 chickens and 10 - 15 pigs. He raised 3 tons of hay per acre. He was one of the organizers of the Maxwelton Chautauqua and was active in Woodland Hall's Sunday school. According to his grandchildren he was well read, could fix anything and liked to invent things.
Born 19 Nov. 1870 in Weeping Water, Nebraska; died 23 Dec.1954 in Freeland on Whidbey Island. Ada grew up on a farm and after coming to Seattle she wanted to live on a farm again. Ada was a very hard worker, wonderful gardener, part time midwife and devout Christian known for her sayings such as:
• Fast Horses Don't Run Far.
• You cannot find the depth of the well by the length of the handle on the pump.
• Man looks on the outside but God looks within.
• The devil finds work for idle hands.
• Choose your words. You might have to eat them.
• Always set the table for an extra person because God may send someone to eat.
• Birds of a feather flock together
The Mackie brothers, J.J. Burley and others organized the first Chautauqua on Puget Sound since 1885. It ran from July 19 through July 31 and was like a summer camp for adults with entertainment, recreation, lectures on religion and education. A 2,500+ seat auditorium was built and canvas tents were available to rent. Sadly, the following summer the sponsors of the Chautauqua moved it to Bainbridge Island which was a more accessible venue for visitors from Seattle and Tacoma.
Mackie folklore reveals that David Mackie donated the land for the park and picnic grounds so he wouldn't have to pay taxes on his property. The baseball field is still in use. There was a Chautauqua baseball team, a Maxwelton women's team and many others. The park is the terminus for the popular 4th of July parade and scene of post parade games and races. Many remember walking across the street to the store to spend their dime or nickel after participating in an event or going to the booths for homemade pie or a hot dog. The picnic ground was the site for many pot luck picnics during summer months which were well attended by Mackies.
Ada and the children came to Seattle in July, 1900. P.H. had already been in Seattle a year working as a builder. In the fall of 1901 they bought 11 lots adjoining Ravenna Park.
With the help of Ada's father they built a 4 room house and moved in December 15, 1901. The older children attended Ravenna Elementary School. In March they bought their first cow, Bridget and calf, Matt, followed by Daisy. It was said that these cows ran away and were found on the University of Washington's campus! Ada's brothers, some of whom lived in Woodburn, Oregon, came for a visit as did John Burley. In the spring of 1904 they planted an orchard and the mother of P.H. came out to live. They sold their home for $1,350.00 after moving to Whidbey Island in July 1905.
The oldest Mackie children attended Island School until Woodland School was built in 1907. It later became Woodland Hall and was used as a community center as well as a Sunday school and place of worship. Intervale School was built in 1915 by P.H. Mackie and was attended by many of his children and grandchildren.
The Peter Howard P.H.) Mackie family first lived in a logging camp shanty on the beach. They then moved to a house on the hill that was owned by Theodore Mackie. In 1923 this house was torn down and P.H. built the one in the photos.
Many of the sons and grandsons of P.H. and Ada worked in logging camps or at mills at Maxwelton and other areas of South Whidbey. According to Mackie folklore there was a shingle mill on the beach when P.H. and his brothers purchased their property. It was located where Maxwelton Creek used to empty into the bay in front of what is now Mill Beach Road. On that same site Herb Green and his son Everett started a mill in 1947 named Maxwelton Creek Mill or Maxwelton Mill. It closed in 1957. Julia Mackie's husband Myron was a logger and had a small company. Fish traps were also one of the first industries in the area. The San Juan Fishing and Packing Company made fish traps at Maxwelton in the early 1900s. Migrating salmon were herded into the traps by the thousands. There was a fish trap in Useless Bay at Maxwelton.
Family lore says that Dave Mackie's daughters named the area Maxwelton after the Scottish song, Annie Laurie, that begins "Maxwelton's braes are bonnie." The name Useless Bay came from the expedition led by Capt. George Vancouver in 1792. The shallow water and low tides made it difficult for them to moor their ship, the "Discovery."
The four Mackie brothers bought 865 acres and hoped to settle the area by selling lots. The property included a large house and a shingle mill. P.H. came first and Ada and seven children arrived in July 1905. They came with cows, chickens and their possessions aboard the sternwheeler Fairhaven. The cows were pushed overboard and swam ashore. Everything else was loaded on a shingle boat and floated in on high tide. Initially there was no dock and roads were sparse. Electricity didn't come until P.H. bought a generator in the early 1930's.
James Montgomery had the first store built in 1907 at the end of the dock built by the Mackies. It was a general store with a post office. He married Hazel Mackie, daughter of David. In 1931 P.H. Mackie built daughter Julia a small store next to her house to sell produce, milk, butter, and eggs from his farm. She was a young widow with three children. She also sold chickens and salmon and baked bread and pies to sell to summer visitors. The store was expanded and named Cross Country Store in the 1940s after Julia married Ray Cross. It was sold in 1950 and changed hands several times before closing.
Ada and Peter Mackie's Children
• Born in Osceola, NE:
Emily Elizabeth (1894);
Julia Ann (1894);
Wallace Gordon (1896)
• Born in Weeping Water, NE:
James Roe (1899);
• Born in Pasadena, CA.:
Hiram Bruce (1898);
• Born in Seattle:
Joseph Cameron ( 1901);
Florence Grace (1903)
• Born on Whidbey Island:
Alden (Skid) Wilmot (1905);
Jeanette Pauline (1907);
Donald Dean (1909);
Vincent Leroy (1911);
Clayton Howard (1913);
Before 1904 there was no regular boat service to the island. After that time steamers like the Calista, Clatawa and Camano came from Seattle and Everett with stops in Glendale, Clinton, Langley, Coupeville and Oak Harbor. Islanders could make the round trip the same day. The stern wheeler Fairhaven operated three times a week and carried grain and produce from the island. The first car ferry, the Central, started service in 1919 and carried eight cars.