A Look Back in Time: Winlock Woman Kills Bear Caught Stealing Apples in 1932


A bear was killed by “Mrs. Harry Goodell” on the night of Tuesday, Nov. 15, 1932, in retaliation for the animal’s eating of her apples. 

“Mrs. Goodell, who lives on a farm three miles west of (Winlock), for several weeks noticed that many of the windfall apples in the orchard were missing. An investigation disclosed the tracks of a large bear,” The Chronicle reported in a story titled “Bruin Killed By Winlock Woman.” 

Goodell decided to “catch the thief” in the act of stealing her apples. She grabbed a shotgun from her wall and went to her orchard around dusk to wait for the bear to return. 

“She was not disappointed,” The Chronicle reported. “In the growing darkness she saw a large form ambling toward her. She fired the shotgun point blank and the bear dropped at the first shot. Not satisfied that the bear was dead she fired the remaining five charges in the chamber in quick succession at the same time screaming to her husband for help.”

When Goodell's husband arrived, the two examined the bear and discovered the first shot had struck the bear’s head, killing it instantly. 

“Although a rifle is generally considered a more suitable weapon with which to hunt bear, Mrs. Goodell’s marksmanship with a shotgun was plenty good enough,” The Chronicle reported. 

The bear reportedly weighed about 200 pounds.


Saturday, Nov. 19, 1932

• The Twin City Central Labor Union was reportedly making arrangements to move its headquarters. The union was relocating from its location on the third floor of First Farmers-Merchants Bank and Trust to the Hope Block Hall. It was unclear where those two buildings were located. The grand opening for the new location was scheduled for the evening of Nov. 30. A total of 13 labor unions in Chehalis and Centralia were affiliated with the union.

• Lawrence Sizemore, a Toledo boy of an unspecified age, was reported to have broken both bones in his left forearm while playing on the Toledo school grounds. Sizemore was described as the son of “Mr. and Mrs. John Sizemore” and no other details were given. 

• The Chronicle featured an Associated Press story on its front page discussing Adolf Hitler’s attempts to gain a leadership role for his National Socialist Party in the German government. “Adolf Hitler, making what may be his most powerful bid for leadership in the German government, talked for an hour today with President Von Hindenburg, emerged with a broad smile and let it be known that he would see the president again next Tuesday,” the story reported. 

• The Centralia Public Library hosted an annual symposium for National Book Week. The event was arranged by Bessie Barton, the librarian of the Centralia Library. According to The Chronicle, the event was attended by a “large and appreciative gathering.” Among the books discussed were two by Norman Thomas, the Socialist Party nominee for president in the 1932 election. 

• A funeral service was held on the afternoon of Friday, Nov. 18, 1932, for Centralia City Commissioner John Saunders. Over 300 people attended the funeral, according to The Chronicle. Centralia City Hall was reportedly closed in honor of the commissioner and most of the stores in the city closed for the service. A successor had not yet been appointed by Centralia Mayor Tom Rowswell and Commissioner Charles Smartwood, but whoever was selected was to serve until the next election in December 1933. According to The Chronicle’s story, Centralia’s elections were held every three years at the time. 

• The Centralia Ministerial Association was reported to have arranged a “union Thanksgiving service” on Thanksgiving morning. The event was to take place at Centralia’s Seventh-Day Adventist Church with Rev. Samuel Linge, the pastor of Centralia’s Nazarene Church, presiding. 

• The Chronicle reported there was “good attendance” at the annual Turkey Trot put on Thursday, Nov. 17. The event was put on by the Chehalis Elks Lodge. During the event, over 100 turkeys and “many chickens” were given away.


Thursday, Nov. 19, 1942

• Chehalis was reported to have filled its December draft quota as two groups of men were expected to leave for service in the Armed Forces on Friday, Nov. 20, and Monday, Nov. 23. The Chehalis draft went on as scheduled despite Centralia’s December draft being canceled, though The Chronicle said Chehalis had not yet drafted all available single men from the 20- to 45-year-old age group, implying Centralia had. The Chehalis men drafted for service for the December draft were Percy Kelly, Lester Slade, William Kay, William Shannett, Donald Beaber, William Korpi, Herman Myer, Philip Durrwachter, Dale Wisler, John Inman, Stanley Green, Fred Thayer, Clarence Collins, Augustus Johnson, Lloyd LaChine, Paul Reed, August Gross, James Rice, Joseph Hoffman, Richard Conradi, Ivan Lowery and Leston Keller. 

• Joseph Shaver died in his Centralia home on Wednesday, Nov. 18. According to The Chronicle, Shaver had lived in Centralia for 15 years and was survived by his wife, Mae; brother, Sam; and sister, Belle. He was 68 years old.

• Hamilton Pinkerton, a 76-year-old resident of Chehalis, died on Wednesday, Nov. 18. He was born in Ontario, Canada on Oct. 14, 1866. He was survived by his wife, Ella; two sons, Herman and Henry; a sister, Maggie; and three grandchildren. 

• Almost 100 pounds of keys were donated by Chehalis residents to the ongoing war effort during World War II. The keys, which were desired for their nickel, chrome and “many priceless alloys,” were sent to Tacoma to be melted down in a government refinery to help manufacture war munitions. A total of about 5,500 keys were collected at the Coffman-Dobson branch of the National Bank of Washington and the Chehalis office of The Chronicle. Carrier boys for the Chronicle had carried out a campaign to collect the keys, collecting about 3,000 keys themselves. 

• “Mr. and Mrs. J.E. Bratcher” of Salkum received a letter from a Scottish “lassie” regarding their son, Grady Bratcher, who was serving in the military during World War II. In the letter, the Scottish lassie informed Grady Bratcher’s parents he was a “wonderful American boy” who was unable to write to his parents so she was doing so on his behalf. Grady Bratcher had previously indicated he would return to the U.S. from Europe but his parents hadn’t heard anything from their son in the intervening months. 

• The Chronicle featured a story announcing the issuance of ration cards permitting the purchase of hard liquor only once a week had begun on Wednesday, Nov. 18. There was no charge for the ration cards, which were required to make purchases during World War II. “This card, presented with the individual permit bearing the same number and signature listed below in the oath, entitles the legal owner to make one purchase a week of the amount or less designated by the Washington State Liquor Control Board,” the card stated on one side. On the other side were 52 spaces representing the 52 weeks of the year. “Clerks will check each out as weekly rations are taken,” The Chronicle reported. 

• An ad by the U.S. Treasury Department encouraging people to purchase war bonds was featured in The Chronicle on Thursday, Nov. 19. “AMERICA IN 1950 IF THE AXIS WINS … if you’re a Jew, if you’re a Catholic, if you adhere to any religion whatsoever, the chances are you’ll be dead. For there won’t be any place for you to go, and religion is a crime in the New Order,” the ad stated. “IF AMERICA WINS … every race, every color, every minority will find a new birth of freedom — for that’s what our armies are fighting for. And you can fight too — with your purchases of War Bonds and Stamps!”


Wednesday, Nov. 19, 1952

• The Washington State Highways Commission approved two highway contracts totaling over $500,000 for Lewis County on Tuesday, Nov. 18, 1952. Including the new contracts, over $3 million was being spent on highway improvement in Lewis County at the time. 

• The Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company had applied to raise its rates, including in Chehalis, Centralia, Napavine and Winlock. The application, given to the State Public Service Commission, included increases from 50 cents to 90 cents. 

• “Centralians’ ears were ringing Tuesday, especially in the afternoon, with police cars, ambulances and fire trucks rushing on emergency calls with their sirens blowing a steady wail,” The Chronicle reported. The sirens resulted from a series of accidents that occurred on the afternoon of Tuesday, Nov. 18, 1952. 

• A jury in the Lewis County Superior Court absolved the Pacific Highway Transport Company from having to pay damages for a Centralia traffic accident that injured two people. The jury did, however, order the Warren Distributing Company to pay $6,500 in damages to the plaintiff, Allan Holt, who brought the case on behalf of the victims of the accident, David and Donna Grayson. Both Graysons were minors. The nature of the accident and the roles played by the Pacific Highway Transport Company and the Warren Distributing Company were unclear from The Chronicle’s story. 

• Robert Ferrel, a Centralia electrical worker, suffered scalp lacerations and other cuts on the afternoon of Tuesday, Nov. 18 when a car hit a cable he was helping string and dragged him along a sidewalk along South Cedar and West Plum streets. According to The Chronicle, the driver of the car “was unidentified, the workmen said, explaining he stopped his car only long enough to unhook the cable and then drove away.” Ferrel was rushed by ambulance to Chehalis’ St. Helen Hospital where he was treated and expected to be released sometime on Wednesday, Nov. 19. 

• Funds from National Forests in Lewis County totaled $206,885 for 1952, according to The Chronicle. According to Lewis County Treasurer Harold Quick, the law required forest money to be divided equally among school and road districts in the county. 

• A wedding between a white man and a black woman made international news, with The Chronicle reporting the couple had married in London in a story entitled “White Weds Black.” Louis Bellson Jr. was a 29-year-old white drummer for Duke Ellington’s band Pearl Bailey was a 34-year-old black “singer of the blues.”


Monday, Nov. 19, 1962

• Winds exceeded 80 miles per hour at the White Pass Summit early on Monday, Nov. 19, 1962. The weather became so bad the highway had to be closed for about an hour and a half. “High winds, falling rocks and downed trees” were all cited as reasons for the highway’s closure, which reopened around 9:45 a.m. The winds were so severe they were causing rock slides at the pass. 

• An 18-year-old Centralia resident began his 15-day jail sentence on Nov. 19 after he was convicted of gaffing salmon. Larry Yeager was arrested at the Skookumchuck River Dam on Sunday, Nov. 18. He was tried in Chehalis on the morning of Monday, Nov. 19 and given the choice of serving 15 days in jail or paying a $100 fine. 

• State Patrol officers arrested 30 drivers in Lewis County over the weekend of Nov. 17 and 18. At the top of the list for offenses were 15 drivers arrested for speeding. Other arrests included driving with an expired license, driving on a suspended license, defective vehicle equipment, driving too fast for road conditions and “escape by fleeing from an officer.”

• Two Centralia residents were “painfully cut” on the morning of Sunday, Nov. 18 when their car “failed to make a turn at the west end of the Mellon Street bridge and smashed into the Seventh Day Adventist Church. The crash caused heavy damages to the church. The injured residents, both 23-years-old, had face cuts and bruises. According to the driver, the front tire blew out, causing him to lose control of the vehicle. 

• Old Saint Nick was expected to make his first pre-Christmas appearance in the Twin Cities on Dec. 1. The Chamber of Commerce was sponsoring Centralia’s third annual Santa Claus parade with the “white bearded guest of honor” set to give out candy to “all GOOD boys and girls in George Washington Park.” In Chehalis, Santa was expected to “take to the airlanes to make his arrival.” Santa was to drop in by helicopter and give out candy canes downtown. 

• A Winlock area resident passed away in a Seattle hospital on Friday, Nov. 16. John Hanninen died at the age of 74. He was born on Aug. 24, 1888 in Finland and had lived in the Winlock area for 34 years. He was a member of Winlock’s Finnish Brotherhood Lodge. Hanninen was survived by a daughter, Mirja Wepsla; two grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. 

• Joseph Denzinger, an 83-year-old Winlock resident died in a Chehalis nursing home on Friday, Nov. 16. Born on Dec. 20, 1878 in Dodge County, Minnesota, Denzinger had lived in Winlock for the previous 55 years. He was a member of the Winlock Catholic Foresters. Denzinger was survived by two sons, Hubert and Al; a daughter, “Mrs. Robert Stiltner;” one sister; and three grandchildren. 


A Look Back in Time is published in every Saturday edition of The Chronicle. The report is completed with the assistance and resources of the Lewis County Historical Museum in Chehalis. To contribute to the history report, send photos and information to news@chronline.com. Items can also be mailed to The Chronicle at 321 N. Pearl St. in Centralia. Call 360-736-3311 for more information.