It’s fun to impersonate somebody else. In my case, it was my father, whom I became for Saturday’s People of the Past event at the Wenatchee Valley Museum & Cultural Center.
I chose the year 1948, for much happened that year. The Chelan PUD got into business that year, buying out Puget Power’s interest. They filed condemnation against the Chelan Dam and distribution of Washington Water Power, who wouldn’t negotiate.
That year the Rock Island ferrosilicon plant was finally sold by the federal War Assets organization to Keokuk Electrometals of Iowa and opened with a couple hundred jobs. That year, the second largest flood in history on the Columbia River did major damage all over the region. I missed it, having been on a trip to Germany. That country was still a mess from the war, and the Russians had blocked access to Berlin by land. I was unable to get to Berlin, although we were supplying food by air.
I came back to continue working for Chief Joseph Dam construction. That dam had been authorized in 1946, and named for the Indian leader in 1948. It was the lowest-cost power project in the region, and I was hoping it could support more irrigation in our tree fruit area, such as the Greater Wenatchee Project of East Wenatchee, which consisted of thousands of acres needing water. It had been organized since the early 1920’s.