General Grant did not stay in my house


To The Eagle:

Enough is enough. I am a 100% service-connected permanent and totally disabled Army Veteran (you're welcome). I moved to Cathlamet because I thought, way out here, people would leave me well enough alone, and mind their own business. Boy-Howe-D, did I get that wrong! Where to start? Although many of you are old as mud and will be soon pushing up daisies, that does not make you history buffs.

General Grant did not stay in my house, before or during the Civil War. I know this, because my house was not built until after the Civil War, 10 years after the Civil War. In fact Washington State did not play any role in the Civil War. One battle was fought in Washington Territories in what is now Idaho.

You know what else is not?

My house is not on the historic register.

Not eligible to be. As it has new electric, indoor plumbing, drywall, new fixtures, and get this, modern appliances.

Not a Doumit house.

They are a huge local family, chances are your house was owned or occupied by one of them at one time also.

My easement is not a public walkway or city road, nor a place for you to take your dog to go to the bathroom. My side yard is not the place to stream pornography on the library’s free wifi.

The property behind my easement is not the city’s. It's, get this, my backyard.

I was going to paint my house a normal color, however because many of you could not keep your opinions to yourselves, I simply will not!

Nathan Croston



Reader Comments(3)

DaisyPusher99 writes:

While it may be true that the Elliott House is not on the National Registry of Historic Places, it would qualify for listing on the Washington Heritage Register. -A building must be at least 50 years old. -The resource should have a high to medium level of integrity, i.e. should retain important character defining features - Resource should have documented historical significance at the local, state or federal level. But review and listing requires the consent of the owner. Not likely now.

DaisyPusher99 writes:

James Birnie died in 1864 and the Elliott House was built in 1870 by his son-in-law. While it is true that Grant was stationed at the Columbia Barracks near Hudson Bay Company's Fort Vancouver and did in fact visit Cathlamet in the 1850's, it was more likely that he was visiting his friend Judge William Strong who moved to Portland from his home in Cathlamet, near what we know call Strong Park, in 1862. It is unlikely that Grant ever even saw the Elliott House.

PatrickCarrico writes:

My understanding is there is circumstantial evidence Mr. Grant did visit Birnie of Birnie's landing back in the day. Mr. Grant wrote emphatically of the plight of the native people of the Pacific Northwest in his autobiography. He also got drunk and rode his horse across the Columbia one frozen morning. And that is why President Grant is my favorite president.


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