Two years of research into Elsie Olmstead sent me down a very long rabbit hole. Here is everything I read and everyone I spoke to. I wish that I had found family to speak with, but no such luck. That said, if you’re related to the family, or have any family stories about the Olmsteads, I would love to hear them!
But first and foremost, there are a slew of folks who have assisted me on my research that I would like to thank, in no particular order:
- Allee Monheim at the UW Special Collections
- Valerie Szwaya at the Federal Archives
- Jonathan Winter and Abby Russell at SPARK Museum of Electrical Invention
- Seattle Room and Writers’ Room at the Seattle Central Public Library
- Richard Caliban and The Playwrights Group
- Tiffany White-Hach at Smith Tower
- Brad Holden
- Sergej Buchholz
- Richard Hamm
- Albert Gidari
- Lorraine McConaghy
- Macall Dunahee Gordon
- Marjorie Olmstead
- Lorraine McConaghy
- Walter Steesy
- Jean Witherington
- Jason Drew Panzer
- All those folks who read, commented, and chastised me through the process, you’re the real heroes!
Bibliography of Research on Elsie Olmstead
Bureau of Prohibition Files, National Archives-Pacific Northwest Region. Record Group 56, Box 1 (folders 3.01-237), Box 2 (folder 28S-70S), Box 3 (folder 97S-99S), Box 5-6, Box 20 (folder 1055M), Box 31 (folder 2440M). Department of the Treasury, Seattle, WA. Last accessed March 29, 2019.
The Charles Gates Papers. Accession No: 0364-001, Box 24, folder 1, Roy Olmstead, Rumrunning King of the Pacific Northwest. UW Special Collections, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Last accessed May 21, 2019.
The Charles Moriarty Sr. Papers. Accession No: 3009-001, Box 7, folders 2-14, CASE FILES – U.S. vs. Whitney, et al., U.S. Opening Statement: Savage Address to the Jury: Moriarty. UW Special Collections, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Last accessed May 21, 2019.
Radio Magazine Collection, Archives, SPARK Museum of Electrical Invention, Bellingham, WA. Last accessed June 7, 2019.
Seattle Times Digital Archive (1985-Current), Articles from 1920-1945, https://www.newsbank.com/libraries/colleges-universities/solutions/top-resources/newsbank-integrated-archives/seattle-times-1895-today. Last accessed May 13, 2019.
Abbott, Karen. “The Bootlegger, the Wiretap, and the Beginning of Privacy.” The New Yorker, July 5th, 2017.
“Saturday, February 14th.” Radio Digest, February 14, 1925, page 9, https://www.americanradiohistory.com/Archive-Radio-Digest/1925/Radio-Digest-1925-02-14.pdf.
Clark, Norman H. “Roy Olmstead, a Rumrunning King on Puget Sound.” The Pacific Northwest Quarterly, vol. 54, no. 3, 1963, pp. 89–103. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/40487821.
Holden, Brad. “Al Hubbard.” HistoryLink, August 26, 2019, https://www.historylink.org/File/20830.
“International Tests Fairly Good.” Radio Digest, December 13, 1924, page 3, https://www.americanradiohistory.com/Archive-Radio-Digest/1924/Radio-Digest-1924-12-13.pdf.
“KFQX Goes Up to 1,500 Watts.” Radio Digest, December 13, 1924, page 9, https://www.americanradiohistory.com/Archive-Radio-Digest/1924/Radio-Digest-1924-12-13.pdf.
McClary, Daryl. “Roy Olmstead.” HistoryLink, November 13, 2002, https://www.historylink.org/File/4015.
Mcdonald, Hazel. “Mrs. Olmsted in Blue.” The Seattle Post-Intelligencer, January 20, 1926, page 3.
O’Connor, Allison. “John Henry “Doc” Hamilton (1891-1942).” BlackPast.org, November 21, 2007, https://www.blackpast.org/african-american-history/hamilton-john-henry-doc-1891-1942/.
Pastier, John. “Smith Tower.” HistoryLink, July 1st, 2004, https://www.historylink.org/File/4310.
Power, Ralph L. “Around and About the Golden Gate: Meet Some of the Regular Feature Artists Broadcasting from the Pacific Coast Stations.” Wireless Age, February, 1925, page 30. https://www.americanradiohistory.com/UK/Wireless-Age/Wireless-Age-1925-02.pdf.
Clark, Norman H. The Dry Years: Prohibition and Social Change in Washington. University of Washington Press, 1965.
Holden, Brad. Seattle Prohibition: Bootleggers, Rumrunners and Graft in the Queen City. The History Press, 2019.
McKenna, Marthe. I Was a Spy!: The Classic Account of Behind-the-Lines Espionage in the First World War. Pool of London Press, 2015.
Metcalfe, Peter. Whispering Wires: The Tragic Tale of an American Bootlegger. Inkwater Press, 2007.
Proctor, Tammy. Female Intelligence: Women and Espionage in the First World War. NYU Press, 2016.
Rutland, David. Behind The Front Panel: The Design & Development of 1920’s Radio. California Historical Radio Society, 2013.
Schneider, John F. Seattle Radio. Arcadia Publishing, 2013.
Holden, Brad. Personal Interview. June 13, 2019.
Winter, Jonathan. Personal Interview. SPARK Museum of Electrical Invention, Bellingham, WA. June 7, 2019.
White-Hach, Tiffany. Personal Interview. Smith Tower, Seattle, WA. May 22, 2019.
Buchholz, Sergej. Personal Interview. The Greater Seattle Bureau of Fearless Ideas. Seattle, WA. May 30, 2019.
Unlocking McNeil’s Past: The Prison, The Place, The People. Washington State History Museum, Tacoma, WA. April 20, 2019.
SPARK Museum of Electrical Invention, Bellingham, WA. June 7, 2019.
Hartsook. “Elise Olmstead reading story book into microphone, ca. 1924.” 1924. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/5474.
Public Domain. “John Henry “Doc” Hamilton.” BlackPast.org, https://www.blackpast.org/wp-content/uploads/prodimages/files/blackpast_images/John-Henry-Doc-Hamilton-public-domain.jpg.
“Vivien Potter, the Beautiful Announcer of KFQX.” Radio Digest, December 6, 1924, page 1, https://www.americanradiohistory.com/Archive-Radio-Digest/1924/Radio-Digest-1924-12-06.pdf.
Staff Photographer, Seattle Post-Intelligencer. “Elise and Roy Olmstead, Seattle, 1925.” 1925. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/892.
———. “Elise Olmstead, Seattle, ca. 1926.” 1926. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/559.
———. “Roy and Elise Olmstead with Roy’s mother Sarah at courthouse, Seattle, 1926.” 1926. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/508.
———. “Roy Olmstead arriving at dock, Steilacoom, May 1931.” 1931. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/1100.
———. “Olmstead residence, Seattle, ca. 1925.” 1925. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/536.
———. “Federal grand jury in Roy Olmstead bootlegging case, Seattle, 1926.” 1926. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/1101.
Seattle Times Archive. “Doc Hamilton’s Barbecue Pit.” 1930’s. Seattle Times. https://static.seattletimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/e94fb968-5262-11e9-bc10-bf9d5a394114-1560×1200.jpg.
———. “Edwin J. Brown.” 1926. Seattle Times. https://static.seattletimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/e734b6ec-5262-11e9-bc10-bf9d5a394114-1560×1172.jpg.
Webster and Stevens. “Motorcycle police squad outside station, Seattle, October 22, 1914.” 1914. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/10118.
Unknown. “Alfred M. Hubbard, Seattle, ca. 1924.” 1924. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/2704.
———. “Prosper Graignic, Ace.” 1920s. OrcasIssues.com, https://orcasissues.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Prosper-Graignic-Ace-smuggler-468×1024.jpg.
———. “Radio station KFQX in Olmstead home, Seattle, 1924.” 1924. Museum of History and Industry, https://digitalcollections.lib.washington.edu/digital/collection/imlsmohai/id/5473.
———. “Roy and Elsie at the Car.” 1920s. Seattle Post-Intelligencer Archives, https://s.hdnux.com/photos/02/37/31/652875/3/920×920.jpg.
Burns, Ken. “Prohibition; Roy Olmstead.” PBS, Narration by Peter Coyote, October 2, 2011, https://www.pbs.org/kenburns/prohibition/watch-video/#id=2082675582.