Elma Timberland Library to hold booking signing event

Guests will have the ability to meet and greet true crime and history author Bryan Johnston

If you want to go:

For people who are interested in attending the book signing and discussion with author Bryan Johnston, the event will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 4, at the Elma Timberland Library, in Elma. The event is free to the public.

Grays Harbor residents who consider themselves to be history buffs or true crime fanatics will have an opportunity to experience a unique event this weekend in East County.

The Elma Timberland Library will be hosting a meet and greet as well as a book signing with Bryan Johnston, the author of “Deep in the Woods: The 1935 Kidnapping of Nine-Year-Old George Weyerhaeuser, Heir to America’s Mightiest Timber Dynasty.”

The Weyerhaeuser Company, which was founded in 1900 in Tacoma, Washington, and owns more than 26 million acres of timberland throughout the United States and Canada, has deep ties to Grays Harbor County, which to present day remains one of the most valuable timber areas in Washington.

The story details how the 9-year-old was snatched off the streets two blocks from his home by three criminals and kept chained to a tree as well as locked in a closet and tied up in a pit. The kidnapping would lead to the biggest manhunt in Pacific Northwest history.

Dee Depoe, who serves as the Elma Librarian, said the event came amid personal interest and advocacy from the community.

“I had seen that last summer (Johnston) was doing a presentation of his book at the Tacoma Public Library and it was an interesting subject to me. I mean, true crime and history? It’s hard to get much better than that,” Depoe said. “One of the members from Friends of the Timberland Library brought up Johnston’s book and recommended we host him here.”

Johnston will be showing historical pictures of the event as detailed in his book as well as explaining some ties the story has to the history of Grays Harbor.

Contact Reporter Allen Leister at 360-463-3572 or allen.leister@thedailyworld.com