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Topic: Pioneers

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Conklin, Mary Ann (1821-1873) aka Mother Damnable

Mary Ann Conklin ran Seattle's first hotel, the Felker House, at Main Street and 1st Avenue S. Her profane vocabulary and fiery temper earned her the moniker "Mother Damnable" which later transmuted i...

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Cook, Mortimer (1826-1899)

Mortimer Cook (1826-1899), born in Mansfield, Ohio, founded the town of Bug on the northern shore of the Skagit River in 1885 and soon renamed it Sedro. His lasting legacy was building the first dryin...

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Cowley, Michael M. (1841-1915), Spokane pioneer

The author of this People's History, Benjamin H. Kizer, was a Spokane lawyer acquainted with local pioneer Michael M. Cowley. Cowley worked as a sutler (an Army storekeeper) and prospector, settled at...

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Dandelions: How They Came to Seattle and Why by Dorothea Nordstrand

In this People's History, Dorothea (Pfister) Nordstrand (1916-2011) tells the story of how Catherine Maynard (1816-1906) brought the first lowly dandelions to Seattle for use in the medical practice o...

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Davis, James S. "Cashup" (1815-1896)

Randall A. Johnson wrote this article about Palouse pioneer James S. "Cashup" Davis in 1968 for The Pacific Northwesterner, the quarterly publication of the Spokane Westerners Corral. Johnson was born...

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Denny, Arthur Armstrong (1822-1899)

Arthur A. Denny is considered the leader of the party of immigrants who first landed at Alki (West Seattle) in 1851 and then founded the city of Seattle in 1852. On February 15, 1852, after a period a...

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Denny, David Thomas (1832-1903)

David Thomas Denny was the first member of the Denny Party (led by his older brother Arthur) to arrive in the future city of Seattle in 1851. He staked a claim to the future site of Seattle Center and...

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Denny, Orion O. (1853-1916)

Orion Denny, the first non-Native boy born in Seattle, made careers both on the water and on land. The son of Seattle pioneers Arthur Denny (1822-1899) and Mary Boren Denny (1822-1912), Orion worked a...

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Denny Party on the Oregon Trail by Dorothea Nordstrand

This account of the Denny Party's journey to the Pacific Northwest from Illinois was written by Dorothea Nordstrand (1916-2011). Nordstrand writes: When I started school in 1921 at the old Green Lake ...

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Doc Maynard: Seattle Pioneer by Dorothea Nordstrand

This account of the stubborn, original, and generous life of the important Seattle pioneer Doc Maynard (1808-1873) was written by Dorothea Nordstrand (1916-2011).

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Dorothea Nordstrand recalls homesteading years (ca. 1911-1919) in Tiger, Pend Oreille County

In this People's History, Dorothea (Pfister) Nordstrand (1916-2011) recalls her childhood years living in a log cabin in Pend Oreille County. The Pfister family homesteaded near Tiger for about a deca...

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Dorothea Nordstrand tells of the family's historic return to Tiger, Washington, in 2003.

In this People's History, Dorothea (Pfister) Nordstrand (1916-2011) tells the story of her family's historic return to Tiger, Washington, on October 3, 2003. Dorothea was born near Tiger in 1916, the ...

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Dorothea Nordstrand tells the story of Dandy, a Pend Oreille County horse in the 1910s

In this People's History, Dorothea (Pfister) Nordstrand (1916-2011) tells the story of a horse with a mind of his own. This very strong-minded horse lived with the Pfister family near Tiger in Pend Or...

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Dr. Henry Smith's Letter from Snohomish County (December 1863)

Seattle physician Dr. Henry A. Smith (1830-1915) figures prominently in early Seattle history as a doctor, a writer, and a farmer. He has been credited with transcribing Chief Seattle's famous 1854 sp...

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Drumheller, Daniel (d. 1925)

The writer of this article on Daniel Drumheller was Norman Bolker, a retired physician in Spokane who was interested in Western history. This story of one immigrant's battle with disease originally ap...

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Edgewood -- Thumbnail History

The City of Edgewood (informally known as North Hill) is located 30 miles south of Seattle in north Pierce County, just north of Puyallup. It borders Puyallup and unincorporated Pierce County to the s...

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Edson, Edward (1860-1944)

Edward "Ed" Edson was a settler in Lynden, located in Whatcom County, who made numerous contributions to the town's early development. He operated the City Drug Store in Lynden for more than 50 years...

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Elementary Level: Marcus and Narcissa Whitman -- Missionaries of the Walla Walla Valley

Marcus and Narcissa Whitman were missionaries who came to the Walla Walla Valley from New York. They wanted to teach Indians about their religion. They also wanted the Indians to change the way they w...

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Elementary Level: Transportation on Lake Washington

For thousands of years, people who lived on Lake Washington have used its waters in their daily lives. In the last 150 years, the methods of crossing the lake to transport goods and people from one si...

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Elementary Level: Walter Bull -- Leading Citizen of Kittitas County

Walter Alvadore Bull was one of the first settlers of the Kittitas Valley in Central Washington. In 1869, he arrived in the region and joined about a dozen other families and unmarried men who had alr...

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Eli Mapel (or Maple): Pioneer Recollections, 1902

This essay is the complete text of an autobiographical essay by Seattle pioneer Eli Mapel (or Maple) (1831-1911), the son of Jacob Mapel (or Maple) (1798-1884). Eli arrived in Seattle on October 12, 1...

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Emory C. Ferguson Recalls Early Days in Snohomish County

Often referred to as the patriarch of Snohomish, Emory C. Ferguson (1833-1911) was a pioneer who followed the same routes as many early adventurers who came West in the late 1850s. He first searched f...

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Evergreen Washelli Cemetery

Seattle's original Washelli Cemetery was Seattle's second municipal cemetery, established on the site of Capitol Hill's present Volunteer Park in 1885. The present Evergreen Washelli Cemetery straddle...

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Fares, Lucinda Collins (1838-1886)

Lucinda Collins Fares was the first white woman to settle in the Snoqualmie Valley. She was the daughter of Luther and Diana (Borst) Collins, and as a 13 or 14 year old was a member of the Collins par...

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