Street of the Week: Lytle Road
Location: Runs north/south from Pleasant Beach Drive,
south of Baker Hill
History: There once was a beer-drinking monkey named
Mike. The beloved pet and local celebrity lived at Lytle’s Saloon
in Pleasant Beach where many a visitor bought him a round just to
see a monkey enjoy a beer at the bar.
Saloon owner and monkey owner Billy Lytle was a character, too.
Often smartly dressed in a fashionable derby hat and garters, Lytle
was known as a friendly, witty businessman who understood the
financial benefits of keeping a monkey on a chain in a bar.
Lytle and his wife Mamie also owned a parrot, a gift from a
visiting seagoing captain. Though unlike his fellow animal
counterpart, the parrot didn’t indulge in the saloon’s alchoholic
beverages, his salty language always kept things lively at the
The animal Lytles weren’t the only ones with reputations. Mamie
was a small woman known for abbreviating everyone’s names and for
frequently prefacing most of what she said with “wait ’til I tell
you.” Mamie’s favorite exclamation of all, however, was supposedly
“Oh Jesus, Mary and Joseph.”
She had good reason to call upon the sacred trio one morning
when she awoke to the maniac cackling of the chickens she kept
outside her and Billy’s home near the saloon.
Upon looking out on the coop, Mamie saw chickens running around
no, not with their heads cut off but almost as upset. It seemed
Mike the Monkey had found his way to the Lytle home and taken an
interest in the flock. He was now in the coop, chasing the frenzied
fowls around and pulling off their feathers.
“Bill, come quick!” Mamie was said to have yelled upon seeing
the monkey-chicken war being waged in her yard. “Wait ’til I tell
you what Mike did to the chickens!”
Billy, upon seeing the commotion, likely laughed at the antics
his furry barkeep had gotten up to that morning. The monkey always
cheered him up with its foolish tricks.
And when Kitsap County went dry and Lytle’s Saloon closed, Bill
could have used a laugh. The couple fell on to hard times with Bill
taking work in the taxing business, meeting ferries at Port Blakely
to find fares.
As for Mamie, she outlived her husband by many years. In the
twilight of her life, she sold her home and moved to a small
cottage not far from the site of their once merry saloon.
Let’s hope she still had Mike the monkey and that colorful parrot
to keep her company.
Source: “A History of Bainbridge Island.” Katy Warner,
1968, page 83.
This occasional Islander series explores the history of
island street names, as compiled by Elinor Ringland and
Island Historical Society volunteers. If you have an
island road story to share, email Ringland at