Who’s Who in Yelm R. B. Patterson
By Louise Hastie Nisqually Valley News November 12, 1942
Yelm’ first mayor, R. B. Patterson, local pharmacist, is the first to be interviewed in a series of sketches of Yelm’s business men who will be separately biographed in this paper each week.
Born in Yamhill, Oregon, in 1890, Mr. Patterson attended college at Oregon State College in Corvallis, where he met and married Patsy Patterson in 1913. After a short residence in eastern Oregon, Mr. Patterson moved to Yelm where he opened his drugstore on the location now occupied by the office of Brown Bros. Garage, later buying the property where the tore is now located. He built a frame building which served as a residence as well as a place of business. Following the fire in 1924 he erected the building he now occupies.
“The section of town where I now live had only one house in comparison to the thirty now in this neighborhood. We had board walks and dirt streets through all of Yelm at that time.”
In 1924 Mr. Patterson was elected as Yelm’ first mayor and served three terms. His two daughters, Shirley and Jean, attended high school and later the University of Washington and are now married. In fact, the druggist became a grandfather a short time ago.
“I’ve noticed a slight change in Yelm in the last year,” Mr. Patterson stated, “I think we’ve become a little lax about keeping up lawns and the paint on our homes. I’d like to see every citizen take more care of his home’s appearance, so that Yelm may remain as neat and clean a town as it has always been.”