Started in 1864 by Henry McClurg as the settlement of Park Place, Monroe experienced rapid growth in the early 1900s due to its rich farmlands and abundant timber, and its proximity to the Great Northern Railroad. Monroe is scenically set against the foothills of the Cascade Range, near where the Snoqualmie and Skykomish Rivers join to form the Snohomish.


‘Gone But Not Forgotten’ program June 3 at Park Place Middle School

Monroe 8th graders research and fundraise to complete 1951 veterans monument

The Monroe Historical Society invites the community to its quarterly membership program “Gone But Not Forgotten,” June 3 at 6:30 p.m. at Park Place Middle School. The program will feature Park Place Middle School 8th graders presenting their research and efforts to refurbish and complete a WWII monument that hasWW2memorial largely been forgotten. The monument was originally installed at Monroe’s Memorial Field on Kelsey Street in 1951. Names of Monroe’s young men who fought in WWII were to be included on a plaque mounted on the monument, but it was never completed. It is still at the old athletic field on Kelsey Street.

“Eighteen young men from Monroe lost their lives defending our nation in WWII and our students have researched each one of them,” says Dottie Simoni, Park Place Middle School Teacher. “They have worked very hard on this 8th grade service project. Many of them are spending time outside of school to research their soldiers, including visits to the historical society and the library.” Simoni and fellow 8th grade teacher Tonia Boyle spearheaded the project two years ago.

A Q&A session with local Monroe veterans will follow the student presentations. Donations to the Monroe Historical Society will be accepted for the completion of the monument.  Refreshments will be served at 6:30 and the program will begin at 7 p.m. Park Place Middle School is located at 1408 E. Main Street in Monroe. All ages are welcome at the free event.


This years quilt raffle features “Fruits of the Valley”, a beautiful2015quilt quilt with a festive fruit theme, honoring Monroe’s local fruit growers. This year’s quilt is once again the result of many, many hours of work by Gail Dillaway, Monroe Historical Society volunteer and board member. Catherine Kessel, of American Quiltworks, graciously donated the machine quilting. Raffle tickets, which are only $1, are available at the museum as well as at other functions in the area where it will be displayed. The drawing will be 6:30, December 8 at the museum. You need not be present to win. All proceeds help to fund activities of the historical society.


Now you can donate to Monroe Historical Society simply by shopping! Fred Meyer stores donate a portion of the money you spend to a non-profit of your choice. FredMeyerRewardsSimply go to www.fredmeyer.com/communityrewards and link your rewards card to Monroe Historical Society – you can link by name or by our non-profit number [85404]. You still earn your rewards points, fuel points, and rebates. You can also sign up at the customer service desk.

Amazon will also donate a portion of sales to  the society, using AmazonSmile: www.smile.amazon.com and choosing Monroe Historical Society.  Every little bit helps!


Currently at the museum:

piano2The upright Hamilton piano that once provided music at the silent movie theaters of Monroe was installed at the museum in October. Nellie Johnson Blakeslee (photo on left side of piano) played the piano at various venues in town theater2for many years. Recently tuned, it sounds beautiful!


Adjacent to this new addition to the museum Chris Bee, museum director, has been working on a display for the Avalon Theater. Originally the Monroe Theater, it opened in 1929 and showed the first “talkie” in town in 1930. schooldisplay2The projector next to the piano was from the Avalon. The theater ended its run in 1966 and the site is now a parking lot.


Continuing along that wall visitors come to the recently completed pioneer school display. The heavy black slate on the wall is one from the old Wagner School which closed in 1956.