Terry-Taylor Longview, WA
I-5 Exit 39, SR4/Allen St W to SR4/Ocean Beach Hwy W to Pacific Way N to Taylor Ave.
Exceptional Terry-Taylor home offering many extras. This 3 bed 3 bath home features and updated kitchen & an updated bathroom, a dining room w/ bay window & an impressive great room w/ wood stove. Living room with fireplace. Bedrooms w/closet organizers. Garden includes blueberries & dahlias. Tuff Shed. New roof & skylight & new ext. paint. Lots of storage. Deck & hot tub. Updated with copper plumbing.
And join the thousands who participate in the annual garage and yard sales.
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About Terry Taylor
For many local residents, the event — held along Terry, Taylor and Northlake avenues off of Pacific Way in Longview — has become synonymous with summer. The event draws 3,000 to 5,000 shoppers each year.
The streets that form the Terry-Taylor neighborhood have long created a peaceful enclave for Longview families. But the land parcel bordered by railroad tracks, Pacific Way and 30th Avenue makes for a gamy note in the city’s history.
Sportive founding fathers, a tempestuous financier and his headstrong daughter were the forerunners of the development’s suburban profile. In some ways, the neighborhood has returned its pre-Longview spirit: It was once a rambling family farm.
When Wesley Vandercook, chief engineer for Long-Bell, laid eyes on the land in the 1920s, he saw room for progress. Vandercook plied the owner of the land with tales of a boom city coming, and the skeptical farmer pocketed $225 an acre.
City planners divided the land into parcels. Alonzo Huntington took an option on a 198-acre piece that included a towering hunk of rock that later bore his name.
Near the rock’s 4-acre base, the original homesteader had built a house in 1910. Huntington moved his family into it, but they had barely settled in before he, his wife and son were killed — they were on the Allen Street Bridge in Kelso when it collapsed in January, 1923, and they drowned.
That spring, Longview’s founders were itching to play golf. They decided not to wait for a site to be developed near Mount Solo and instead turned to the Huntington land. They rented the house for the city’s first country club.
Weyerhaeuser had routed its train rails along the south edge of the parcel, but the golfers just teed off across the tracks. When a new clubhouse was completed, they moved up the hill to what is presently the Longview Country Club.
Enter William A. “Bert” Taylor.
Taylor owned a prosperous Kelso insurance business, helped found First Federal Savings and Loan, and built the Taylor Apartments on 20th Avenue and the first shopping center at 30th and Ocean Beach Highway.
He also got married — several times, according to his son, and twice to the same woman.
“He enjoyed life, believe me,” said his son, pilot and inventor of the Aerocar and the cruise missile, Moulton “Molt” Taylor of Longview. “You name it, he did it.”
(Molt Taylor, also interviewed for this story in 1988, died in 1995.)
The elder Taylor was an avid horseman, golfer and an early member of the Country Club, which may have piqued his interest in the Huntington Property.
Bert purchased 80 acres of it, remodeled the Huntington house and moved in around 1935. His second wife, Jeanne Taylor, moved there in 1941.
“It was a fairy tale place, really,” said Jeanne, interviewed in 1988 from her home in Portland. “He planned the house and the grounds and built the barn.”
Bert Taylor was legendary for his American Saddle Horses and Guernsey cows. The place set records for butterfat and made “Ripley’s Believe it or Not” as the largest cattle ranch within a city’s limits.
Aside from Molt Taylor, whose inventions would make him far more famous than his father, Bert had a daughter.
According to Jeanne Taylor, she had just returned from a trip to Spokane in 1944 when Bert announced he wanted to adopt a baby girl.
The mother of the child, Jeanne said in 1988, “was young, a real nice-looking person, and she wanted to remarry.” The father of the child was not interested in children, Jeanne explained, so the woman was “adopting out” two toddlers.
Bert would have been in his 50s at the time; his son Molt about 32. Jeanne, who also had a son from a previous marriage, agreed to raise the 18-month-old little child. “I thought it was a fine idea,” she said.
Bert named his new daughter Terry Neil Taylor (named for Molt’s wife, Lillian Neil Taylor) and called her “TNT.”
Sometimes people grow into their nicknames.
By the time she was 7, Terry had won numerous ribbons and trophies for her horse riding and was named “Young Horsewoman of the Month” by a horse magazine.
A Daily News photo from January, 1950, shows a smiling girl with blonde braids, dressed in a tuxedo-like suit and top hat and holding a riding crop.
“She was very sweet,” Jeanne remembered, “a marvelous, natural athlete.”
“She was a hellion,” said Helen Varney of Longview, one-time advisor to the Colt Club, a girls’ riding academy to which Terry belonged.
Varney, also interviewed in 1988, had belonged to the Longview Hunt Club during the 1940s with her husband, Preston, and she recalled the high-class horses, formal horse shows in the ring Bert had built, and the trail rides and cocktail parties that went with the Taylors’ life.
But life was no party for Jeanne, Varney hinted, who was a close friend of Bert’s wife back then. “She had a lot to cope with,” Varney said. “She was a lovely, patient person. …
“Bert had a great love for Bert. He was a very attractive gentleman, very charming. And he was very domineering. He demanded respect – you know that type of man.”
According to people who remembered Terry as a girl, Bert doted on her, teaching her to ride when she was 3 and showering her with gifts.
“Anything she wanted, Dad would buy for her,” Molt Taylor said. “She was the cutest kid you ever saw.”
When Bert Taylor began selling off some his acreage and developing parcels in the 1950s, he named two streets after his daughter: Terry Avenue and Taylor Avenue.
By January of 1957, Terry would have been 14. She hit adolescence, and according to Molt, the hay hit the fan.
Jeanne Taylor chose the phrase “high spirited.” Molt was more blunt.
“She was utterly incorrigible,” he said. “Utterly spoiled.”
Ann Clarke Ford, a girlhood friend of Terry’s and visitor to the household, lived in Lake Oswego when she was interviewed in 1988. She remembered the home, surrounded by black walnut trees and white fences, the pond Terry rode her horse across, Bert’s study with its leather furniture.
Terry “was a spitfire,” Ford said. “That little girl could ride. She was daring. She would ride her horse up and down the mound (Huntington Rock). She would gallop down the highway bareback, with just a halter. That’s dangerous.
“She would ride her horse into a lather and make Bert mad,” Ford said. “He was very strict with her. He just tried to control her.”
Bert had sold all but eight acres of his land and had just finished a new brick house on Pacific Way when he died of a heart attack Oct. 9, 1960.
Terry would have been 17 or 18 that year.
People interviewed for the 1988 story said Terry had two brief marriages under her belt by 1964, that she lived on Taylor Street with the second husband, where early residents remember the young woman holding loud parties and zooming down the street in her car.
Jeanne Taylor left town in 1961, she said. “There was no future for me in Longview.” She said Terry left in 1964, eventually going to California to try and find her birth mother. And she never again heard from the girl she had raised from the age of 18 months, Jeanne said at the time.
Taylor had sold the farm parcel back in 1947 to Bill and Rita Swanson, who raised six kids there and held square dances in the barn’s huge second story.
The Huntington house was purchased by Maurice and Marilou Koelsch in 1960. It was later owned and remodeled by Alan and Margaret Engstrom and most recently bought by Frank and Holly McShane.
Bonnie Doble now owns the barn and farm and a smaller house there.
A few horses still flick their tails where Pacific Way curves west from the baseball field at John Null Park. But nothing remains of fancy horse shows and believe-it-or-not cattle. Those layers of the past collapsed beneath bulldozers, cement mixers and street pavers, where two streets named Terry and Taylor hold the only clues to the stories buried there.