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Remembering the First Fat Tuesday: Marie McCaffrey's Exact Recollections

In this People's History, Marie McCaffrey tells the story of how Seattle's Fat Tuesday -- the annual carnival-style celebration that takes place in Pioneer Square -- got started. The first Fat Tuesday...

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Seafair: the Founding: Jim Douglas's Account

In this excerpt from his unpublished autobiography, Jim Douglas (1909-2005) recalls the many steps involved in coordinating Seafair. Jim Douglas was one of a group of local citizens called together by...

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Seattle and King County's First Non-Indian Settlers

In the vicinity of the Duwamish River and Elliott Bay where in 1851 the first U.S. settlers began building log cabins, the Duwamish tribe occupied at least 17 villages. The first non-Natives to settle...

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Seattle Renton & Southern Railway -- King County's First True Interurban

The Seattle Renton & Southern Railway built King County's first true interurban railroad beginning in 1891, and spurred development of the then largely agricultural Rainier Valley. The line was be...

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Seattle's Denny Hotel Cemetery

Seattle's first cemetery was located on what became the grounds of the Denny Hotel, downtown at 2nd Avenue and Stewart Street. The first burial took place in 1853 and the last probably in 1860. About ...

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Seattle's First Christmas

Christmas of 1851 found a great change at New York Alki, the place of the very beginning of our city of Seattle. Only six short weeks had passed since the Arthur Denny party had made their historic la...

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Spanish Exploration: Juan Perez Expedition of 1774 -- First European Discovery and Exploration of Washington State Coast and Nueva Galicia (the Pacific Northwest)

Juan Perez (Juan Josef Perez Hernandez), sailing on the frigate Santiago with a crew made up mostly of Mexicans, was the first non-native to sight, examine, name, and record the islands near British C...

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Wilkes, Charles (1798-1877)

Lt. Charles Wilkes led the first U.S. Navy expedition to explore the Pacific Ocean in 1838. He surveyed Puget Sound and named dozens of bays, coves, rivers, islands, and land formations, including Ell...

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