Kent Sullivan has had been a history enthusiast since he was a youngster in St. Paul, Indiana, a small farm town of 850 that was lucky to have several people who actively researched and wrote about the former limestone quarry hotbed, including Robert Mitchell, Gladys Pike, and Ruth Dorrel. Kent has had “trains on the brain” since those early days as well, as St. Paul is literally cut in half by the former Big Four alternate main line from Indianapolis to Cincinnati, which was served by Conrail during Kent’s childhood. St. Paul’s rich history also includes a charming short line railroad that served the limestone quarries as well as an interurban line and depot. Like many teenagers, Kent became car crazy, although he fell in love with an unusual marque, the Chevrolet Corvair, and he has led many research projects and written many articles about various Corvair topics. You can find that large body of work at CorvairKid.com.
Kent parlayed his budding talent as an “explainer” into a degree in technical writing from Purdue University, which has served him well in his many further historical research and writing projects. After moving to the Seattle area and having two boys, he again became interested in trains; this time the Northern Pacific, specifically the branch lines north and east of Seattle, one of which passes through Kirkland, where he lives. Kent has published numerous articles in the Northern Pacific Railway Historical Association’s quarterly magazine, the Mainstreeter, including a five-part series on NP operations in Everett, and served as Vice President of the NPRHA for four years. Kent also participated as part of a committee that documented the history of the NP bridge over the Sammamish River in Redmond, as part of the Redmond Central Connector Phase 2 project and is a founding member of the committee researching and telling the history of the Seattle Coal & Transportation Company for the Newcastle Historical Society.
Matt McCauley is a Kirkland native, a member of the third of a five generation Kirkland family, and spent his teen years living on Mercer Island. As a boy he developed an interest in local history and as a teen he learned to SCUBA dive and combined these interests by diving for relics and wrecks in Lake Washington, a pursuit that led him and his diving friends to salvage a total of five US Navy WWII combat aircraft from the bottom of the lake back in the 1980s.
He majored in Journalism at Seattle University and in the early 1990s wrote “A Look to the Past”, a popular weekly local history column in the old Kirkland Courier newspaper. In 2010 he released a collection of those columns in the book A Look to the Past: Kirkland and wrote another book, Early Kirkland, published in 2017. Matt was a founding member and past board member of the Kirkland Heritage Society and supports and volunteers with a variety of other historical organizations and projects, most notably the Newcastle Historical Society’s Seattle Coal & Transportation Company Research Project. He leads a popular annual pioneer tour of the historic Kirkland Cemetery and contributes regularly to Kirkland Lifestyle magazine. When not studying or writing about local history Matt is a small business owner. He has two grown sons and a not-scary rescue pitbull.