Thursday, March 19, 2015
Merging Smith Troy and Enoch Bagshaw
About exactly a year back I wrote about how Enoch Bagshaw, legendary Husky football coach, collapsed and died in my own city.
It turns out my favorite Olympia politician had his own had in forcing Bagshaw to Olympia. Smith Troy, who eventually was Thurston County prosecutor, and then state Attorney General, and savior of Olympia (in both senses), had a hand to play in Bagshaw's departure.
In the late 1920s Troy was student body president up at the University of Washington. There was apparently some sort of track team cabal that ran the student government back then, and they had it out for the football head coach.
It wasn't just a student uprising either, or at least not in the sense that it was students pressuring the school's leadership to do something. Bagshaw worked (in a sense) for the students. The student government funded the football team, and to a degree, they controlled Bagshaw's employment. It wasn't until the late 1930s when the student association reformed and the 1950s when they furthered themselves even more.
But, in the 1920s, Bagshaw was being forced out by the students, led by Smith Troy.
I don't know the subtext of the fight. Just that Troy was in the front of the student body as they fought to remove Bagshaw.
Now, while Troy conspired against Bagshaw in Seattle, Governor Roland Hartley was fighting a running battle with the Commissioner, the State Attorney General, the Thurston County Prosecutor and the various arms of his own transportation department. And, the courts. The courts got involved too.
To put thing in perspective, Hartley is our Hoover. On meth. A Republican fiddling while the state's economy comes crashing down around his ears. The last Republican in a long line of GOP dominance in our state, ushering in Democratic and centrist Republican rule for decades.
Hartley was mean, incredibly conservative and the battle between the other branches of government had turned into a turf war, each side trying to tear down the other's offices. To the point that Hartley had a hard time staffing his transportation office.
Hartley, an Everett conservative capitalist, had brought in Everett logger Fred Baker to run the show. He resigned, so Hartley went back to the Everett well and brought up Bagshaw, the former Everett High School football coach.
Bagshaw (and this is apparently not a lie) was also a civil engineer in his previous life before becoming a full time college coach.
Its likely Bagshaw would've died no matter what. He was probably already sick when he finally resigned from the U.
Smith Troy was just starting his life. He was wrapping up school about the same time Bagshaw wrapped up his gridiron career. A year after his death, Troy was getting married and starting his legal life under his brother, Thurston County prosecutor Harold Troy.