End of Watch: 11/05/1916
Agency: Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office
County: Snohomish County
On Sunday, November 5, 1916, a labor riot broke out at the Everett docks when a steam ship Verona attempted to land there with 300 members of the International Workers of the World. After the ship ignored orders by National Guard Brigadier General Maurice Thompson to turn around, Snohomish County deputies and deputized citizens fired shots on the Verona. As many as twelve men were shot and fell into Puget Sound.
A riot erupted and during an ensuing gunfight where nearly 2,000 shots were fired. Snohomish County Chief Deputy Jefferson Beard (also former county sheriff) and Deputy Charles Curtiss (deputized citizen and lieutenant in the National Guard) were shot and killed. Although the exact circumstances are unknown because county records have since been destroyed, it is thought that both deputies were struck by friendly fire.
Deputy Curtiss was a member of the Washington National Guard Reserve. He is survived by his wife and three daughters.