Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Jane Shaw Interview by Gladys Para

The following is an interview with Jane Shaw Rockwell conducted by Gladys Para on April 20, 1988.  This has been quoted exactly as it was written. Gladys Para wrote the Peninsula Gateway Looking Back Column in the 1980s. 

"My dad's (Clarence) scrapbook has been loaned out to a grandson and I couldn't get hold of him to start it on its way home again.  Several years ago, I wrote a sketch on dad for the society when they had a display on his hobbies when they were still in the old log cabin up towards the head of the bay. [now JW's Restaurant]  A copy of it should be around here somewhere but I couldn't locate it.  I need one or the other to jog my memory.

"Dad helped raise money in fact, helped to promote, the building of a band stand at the head of the bay.  Trombly had a band then and I can remember them playing there. 

"I have seen a notebook somewhere in our stuff, where pop kept track of donations made.  Don't know if I can find it or not.  This must have been in the 1920s sometime.  Dad and Mom were members of an early dance club in Gig Harbor, started by the Burnhams.  They were called the Wampus Club and to get there purchased a boat float from Pt. Defiance and held their dances there.  Other members I remember were the Peacocks, Millers, Wylers, Iliffs, Wheelers, (Rust and Goodman might have come now and then too).  Others I will think of later.  We kids also went to these dances and after watching the old folks, either fell asleep on benches or in the top of the float where there was an upstairs room.

"Pop was a traveling salesman and I have a most interesting diary of those days, but not pertinent to Gig Harbor only that the wife and children he loved were in that town waiting for his visits home, and he always brought small gifts.

"When times started getting tough he stayed in Gig Harbor and started his sign painting shop, and later added a printing press and did job printing.  During these years he trained and ran roosters the height of this endeavor when he ran them in Madison Square Gardens and appeared on Hobby Lobby.  My mind won't track on all the things in the community that he was involved in.  Will have to get the scrap book back before I can give you much more.  The quotation we talked about was that every morning when he woke up he thought of himself as a little boy going out to play and looked forward to what the day would bring.  ""What will I do to have fun today!?""

"Sorry I can't remember any more today.  I left brother Frank's book on your desk.  Please don't let me forget where IT is.  Have more like it at home.

"Madeline [Summerhays] and I spent most of this day sorting the clippings.  What a JOB.  Don't know if we have them all right or not but we gave her the old one two three try." [Jane and Madeline volunteered weekly at the museum.]

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