J.W. Nee’s Hotel & Store at Sheep Camp

Joseph W. Nee was born in 1885 in Washington Territory. His parents, John and Maggie were born in Ireland and emigrated about 1869 to Kentucky where their first son was born. After that, based on the kids birthplaces, they moved to Alabama, Florida, Georgia, back to Alabama, Oregon and finally Washington Territory. His father John must have had a bar because in 1886 he was convicted of running a gambling house and having minors present in Lincoln County Washington. Joseph was the 8th living child in 1887. They all must have worked hard on the farm and so, in the gold rush, Joseph, at age 13 helped to run the Hotel and Store at Sheep Camp half way up the Chilkoot Trail. He stayed in the Yukon until 1903.
By 1910 he was back in Lincoln County Washington with a general store, a wife, Goldie and two kids.
Seen above is the store and hotel, the label says it is Dyea, while other records say it was at Sheep Camp.

Lundberg; Yukon site; Fairbanks news list

Frank Clement

On this day, March 14, 1898 Frank Clement of Hillsboro, Oregon was shot and killed at Sheep Camp, on the Chilkoot Trail by Colby Gottlieb Schneider of Howard County Maryland. It was reported that a lynching was averted by the actions of the officers involved and that the prisoner was in custody. There was no other information on this case but a Gottleb Schneider died in Oregon in 1937.

reported in various newspapers including the New York Times

Harry Huntington’s letter

Harry wrote a letter to his fiance (later wife) Jennie from Alaska which is dated 1897, but he must have meant 1898 as it is written on the back of a newspaper extra which has the date April 3, 1898 printed on it. The EXTRA published by the Dyea Trail is about the death of eighteen prospectors in a snow slide.

“Sheeps Camp April 7, 1897, My beloved Wife:-How I wish I was on my way to meet you My Love My all. If tomorrow is a good day we will bid adieu to Sheep Camp and take up our abode at Lake Linder Mon. We were on the summit yesterday, paid our duty and took most of our freight down the hill out to Crater Lake. Wolff and Percival will finish up today. I went as far as the stables and brought back the dogs. Yesterday I dug my freight out of about eight feet of snow, you can see men all over the trail digging out their “caches”, some will never find theirs. Today is warm and the sun shines brightly on the snow covered Peaks. Up to yesterday fifty one bodies have been taken from the snow slide, and some that are alive are in evidence now of the awful experience of being under the snow and couldn’t move a muscle. I talked with one man that was in 45 minutes. He said he could breathe alright and was very comfortable physically but not mentally.
The search for the misfortunate was kept up until last night no one being allowed to pass the Place with a pack or load. There is no one at work this morning and I guess they have given it up. The snow slide made no noise whatever and wasn’t even heard by the ones that were caught.
We never left our camp during the storm and don’t work any stormy days, we have lost a lot of time but it has given us an opportunity to get mail from our dear ones a home. I hate to leave on that account. I rec. a nice letter from Halla yesterday, and I got it by accident too.
One of the Crossley boys was down Sheeps Camp and saw my name on front of a store.(?) There are two places to get mail and I suppose they got it on account of having “Please Forward to Sheeps Camp” on it. You can address your letters to Takish House North West Territory from now on They come from Dyea the 20th of each month.”

from “The Descendents of Nathaniel Huntington” online genealogy book.

Joseph W. Nees

J.W. Nees came to Alaska from Tacoma and started the J.W. Nee’s Hotel and Store in Sheep Camp on the Chilkoot Trail in 1898. He died on this day April 5, 1920 in Alaska.
Seen above is his store at Sheep Camp.

Lundberg; Yukon site; Fairbanks news list

Ernest Raphael Cheadle

Ernest R. Cheadle was born in 1860 in Albany Oregon. In 1880 he was working as a laborer in El Cajon, California.
Married Melinda Julia Hearn in 1889 in Sacramento, California and had two kids, Ernest Jr. and Bessie. He and Melinda Julia divorced in 1896 in San Francisco.
He came to Alaska and built the Cheadle Hotel and Restaurant in Dyea in 1898. He was also appointed the Dyea U.S. Marshal from June 10, 1898 to November 29, 1898.
Although he was living in Dyea, Alaska, he went to Seattle on February 2, 1899 and married Nellie Ada Hewitt. She presumably died because he then married Sylvia Jurinda Smith, a Swedish gal from Utah on November 2, 1903 and had two more kids. In 1910 he was living in Seattle, Washington with his 4 kids and Sylvia and working as a real estate person. Ernest Cheadle died on June 8, 1921 in Seattle, Washington.

Pictured above is another cozy hotel in Sheep Camp.

S.F. Call online; Washington State Records; Skagway Museum record; Rootsweb for King family;

Sheep Camp

Mr B.L. Tingley took this photo of the muddy road in front of the Grand Pacific Hotel in Sheep Camp. Mr. J.P. Rupp owned this fine establishment. No news on what became of him after the gold rush.