Slide Show

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Olympic Peninsula history, a timeline

New Dungeness Lighthouse, since 1857, Dungeness Spit

14,000 Years Before Present, Manis Mastodon Site. The remains of a butchered mastodon and a spear point in a rib bone represent the oldest evidence of human activity in the Pacific Northwest.
9,000 Years B.P. Archaeological remains found on James Island at mouth of Quileute River.
6,000 Y.B.P Elk hunters camp made of posts and cattail mats with stone oven for baking camas located on the edge of the Sequim Prairie.
3,000 YB.P. Hoko Rock Shelter inhabited by Makah fishermen.
2500 Y.B.P Tse-wit-sen village built at west end of Port Angeles Harbor. The 335 Human remains and  over 100,000 artifacts unearthed by a construction project represent the largest pre-contact burial site in the Pacific Northwest.
219 B.C. Chinese tradition tells of a mysterious foreign land to the east of Japan they called “Fousang.” 
1285 Marco Polo called this new land “Anian.” The fabled Straits of Anian were said to reach across the continent. Renaissance explorers were sure this was a shortcut to the Orient, a land rich in gold, spices and souls waiting to be converted to Christianity.
In 1513 Balboa discovered “The Western Sea” later named the Pacific Ocean and claimed all of the lands that it washed for the King of Spain. 
1579 Sir Francis Drake was raiding Spanish ships full of treasure they had looted from the New World.  To avoid pursuers, Drake sailed round the tip of South America and up the west coast looking for the “Northwest Passage”, a shortcut to England. Along the way Drake landed in a harbor he named “New Albion” to claim the land for the Queen of England, repair his ship and bury 17 tons of treasure.  The debate has raged since then whether Drake's “Port Albion”, was the Strait of Juan de Fuca. 
1592 Juan de Fuca, a Greek navigator claims to discover the Strait that bears his name for the Viceroy of Mexico. Few believed this claim since there were no records.  Juan De Fuca did mention a stone pillar at the entrance of the strait.
1639 Japanese Government decreed all junks must be built with open sterns and large square rudders that were unfit for ocean navigation causing countless Japanese to be shipwrecked on the West Coast of North America.
1700 A subduction event occurred as Juan de Fuca Plate slid beneath the North American Continental plate creating an earthquake that was estimated to be over a 9 magnitude earthquake that sent a tsunami that reached Japan. All tribes on the Olympic Peninsula have an oral tradition of floods which may have originated as the result of a subduction event. 
1700  an Ozette village was buried in a mudslide. An archeological dig at the site in the 1970's found a 
European bead and some brass tacks that could have come from Drake's or the ship of Juan de Fuca himself. 
1775 First landing on the Pacific Coast by a European near Pt. Grenville. Captains Bruno Heceta and Bodega y Quadra sailed north from San Blas Mexico. On July 14th Heceta landed north of Pt. Grenville planted a cross and buried a wax sealed bottle to take possession of the land. This was observed by the Native Inhabitants who must have understood the implications of the ceremony.  
1775 Captain Bodega Y Quadra  and his ship Sonora who was sailing with Heceta, loses a landing party that was ambushed and massacred near the Isla de Delores the Island of Sorrows. Quileute claim the Spaniards were captured and enslaved.
1778 Captain Cook sails past the mouth of the Fuca Strait in the fog. Cook named Cape Flattery for the “pretended Strait of Juan de Fuca”.  
1779 The name Oregon first appears on a map. It is given to a river in the Pacific Northwest by an English map maker. 
1782 Smallpox epidemic among the S'Klallam
1787 A longboat crew from the English Ship Imperial Eagle is attacked and massacred near the site of the Quadra attack. English Captain Charles Barkely names Destruction Island and The Destruction River, (Hoh) for the incident. Barkley sales north and discovers the Strait of Juan de Fuca. 
1788 English fur trader John Meares observes Fuca's stone pillar. Replaces broken spar with a local fir becoming the first logger on the Olympic Peninsula.   
1788 Robert Duffin, one of Meare's officers was sent on a longboat expedition from Nootka on Vancouver Island down the Strait of Juan de Fuca to Port Townsend. Duffin was attacked by what were presumed to be S'Klallam Indians west of Discovery Bay with arrows, clubs and stone bludgeons. Several of the crew were wounded. The longboat was said to be pierced, “in a thousand places with arrows.”
1789 the American Captains John Kendrick and Robert Gray, who discovered the Columbia River, entered the Strait of Juan de Fuca as far as Clallam Bay. On a voyage around Vancouver Island Gray traded an old iron chisel for sea-otter furs worth $8,000 dollars in China. Gray traded the furs for tea which he sold in Boston. Gray became the first American to sail around the world.  
1789 The English Captains John Meares and William Douglas were arrested at Nootka Sound for violating Spain's Territory. 
1790 The Nootka Convention established a joint occupation between Spain and England where sovereignty would be determined by occupation. 
1790 Manuel Quimper Purchases berries and salmon “of a hundred pounds weight” from natives off
the mouth of the Elwha River. Quimper planted a cross at what is now Jamestown and later at Neah Bay to claim possession for Spain. 
1791 Spanish military post established in Discovery Bay.
Dungeness Valley prairie
1791 Port Angeles is discovered by Francisco Eliza wh named it, “Puerto de Nuestra Senora de Los Angelos.” Name later shorted to Los Angelos, Then changed to False Dungeness.
1792, May  Captain Salvador Fidalgo arrived at Neah Bay to build a fort that was supposed to include a battery of cannons, palisades,  and an oven large enough to bake bread for the Spanish fleet. This would bolster Spain's land claims and monitor shipping on the Strait.
Predictably, the Makah were hostile. They killed a first officer who tradition says, had abused their women. Fidalgo retaliated by blasting an innocent Makah canoe out of the water with his cannon. Given these hostilities, Nunez Gaona could not survive without the protection of a warship and Neah Bay had a rocky bottom and rough swells that made it a poor anchorage.  The Spanish “Fort” never amounted to much more than a few huts and a garden. 
It didn't take long for the Spanish to observe the sea otter trade would die once the otters were extinct. The land was covered with an impenetrable forest that could not be farmed or grazed. As a Northwest Passage, The Strait of Juan de Fuca was a dead end road to nowhere since there was no gold to be found in the region. 
1792 September 29th Nunez Gaona abandoned by the Spanish leaving the British, Russians and Americans to fight over who owned The Strait of Juan de Fuca.
1792 Robert Gray Discovers the Columbia River and names it for his ship. 
1792 Manuel Quimper enters Dungeness Bay trading with the Indians for fish, venison and mats. 
1792 Captain George Vancouver anchors in Dungeness Bay. The Indians ignore him. Vancouver is so impressed with the beauty of the area he names it Dungeness after his home in England. 
1793 the Scotsman Mackenzie completed the first journey by land across the North American Continent to the Pacific Ocean at the mouth of the Bella Coola River. 
1805 the Americans Lewis and Clark reached the mouth of the Columbia. While neither of these explorers took a formal possession of the land their right of discovery gave their countries a competing claim. 
1808. Captain Nikolai Bulygin and the ship The Saint Nicholas had been sent by the Russian America Company to explore the coast of what the Americans called Oregon Country between The Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Columbia River. Of course Bulygin was hunting for sea otters but he was also looking for anchorages for large ships and farmland that could supply Russian Alaska with the fresh food they needed to prevent scurvy. The Nikolai wrecked just north of the Quileute River. The survivors included the Captain's wife Anna Petrovna, the first white woman on the Olympic Peninsula, Aleuts and Hawaiins who fled south to Hoh River where  they were captured by the Indians and traded 
History of the Olympic Peninsula Timeline
by Pat Neal
as slaves to other tribes south to the Columbia River and North to Cape Flattery.
1810 May 6th Captain T. Brown of the Ship Lydia anchored at Neah Bay and was able to purchase 13 of the Nikolai survivors. Anna Petrovna  was not among them. 
1812 The Russians gave up on the Oregon Country and went south to California building Fort Ross near Bodega Bay.
1812 The United States declared it's first war, on Britain.  As the War of 1812 ground to a stalemate Great Britain learned the United States could not be bullied.  
1818 Britain and the United States agreed to a common boundary that followed the 49th parallel west to the crest of the Rockies. The disputed Oregon country would be jointly occupied by both countries. It was a diplomatic ploy the British had used to  eliminate the Spanish at Nootka Sound. 

1819 Under terms of a treaty Spain agreed to stay south of the 42nd parallel in California, ending all land claims in the Pacific Northwest.
Morganroth cabin
1824 the Americans countered the British with another joint occupancy treaty, this time with Russia who agreed to move north of the 49th parallel, territory that was claimed by Britain. This left the Strait of Juan de Fuca with two rivals for ownership.  Until the Oregon Treaty of 1846 
1826 Hudson Bay Company establishes Ft. Vancouver on the Columbia River
1828, July, Chief Factor Dr. John McLoughlin of The Hudson's Bay Company at FT. Vancouver sends an expedition of 60 men under Chief Trader Alexander McLeod to punish the S'Klallam who were accused of murdering 5 HBC men and kidnapping a woman on Hood Canal. The expedition attacked a S'Klallam village at the Portage at Indian Island then met the ship Cadboro at Port Townsend. The Cadboro sailed to Dungeness Bay, anchored in front of a village and began negotiating for the release of the woman. The village was shelled by cannon fire and burned by a landing party that destroyed 46 canoes. The woman was returned to the Cadboro three days later. On their return voyage, the Cadboro burned a S'Klallam House at Port Townsend that was reported to be over 200 paces in length. The expedition was criticized as excessive by the Hudson Bay Company. As a result Alexander McLeod was not made Chief Factor.  
1833 Three Japanese shipwreck survivors from a fourteen man crew washed ashore just south of Cape Flattery after drifting across the ocean for 14 months. The Japanese were rescued and enslaved by the Makah, then purchased by the Hudson Bay Company who tried to return them to Japan. 
1841 The United States Wilkes Expedition explores Puget Sound. This is the first government expedition sent to the Pacific Northwest since Lewis and Clark on a mission of scientific discovery and geographical mapping. It established an American land claim. Reports Potatoes being grown in Discovery Bay by the S'Klallam.
1843 City of Victoria is Founded.
1845 HBC census of the Clallam Tribe 1,300
1846 Oregon Treaty made the middle of the Strait of Juan de Fuca the boundary between the U.S. and Britain.    
1846 When the northern boundary of Oregon was moved to the 49th parallel the Hudson Bay Company found itself in American territory so they moved to Victoria on Vancouver Island.
1847 Paul Kane, an Irish artist commissioned by the Hudson Bay Company to paint the Indians of North America described the S'Klallam  village I-E-Nusw at the west end of Port Angeles harbor as “strongly defended with two pallisades. The outer one was 20 feet high, the inner one 5 feet, enclosing a space 150 feet square, entirely roofed over and divided into cubicles for separate families. Kane found 200 people living there. 

1847 Tatoosh Island Lighthouse built. George Gerrish is the first keeper.
1848 Measles and dysentery epidemic among the S'Klallam
1848 President Polk signed an act that created Oregon Territory, a vast area of land that included what is now Oregon, Washington and Idaho. 
1850 September 27, Congress passed the Donation Land Law that provided a survey be made of all public land and grants of 320 acres be given to any citizen willing to settle it.
1851 Alfred Plummer and Charles Bacheller land at Port Townsend where they are welcomed by 500  S'Klallam 

1851 Sea Captains Elijah McAlmond and Thomas Abernathy are the first to file homesteads at the mouth of the Dungeness River. 
1852 June 9th Col I.N. Ebey of Whidbey Island observed a great deal of smoke coming from the Olympic Peninsula which he supposed was caused by Indian setting fires.
1852 Jefferson County is created by the Oregon Territorial legislature, named after President Thomas Jefferson. 
Sequim pioneer cabin
1853 President Millard Filmore established Washington Territory. The population is 3,985 not counting the Native Americans. 
1853 John Donnell first white settler on the Sequim Prairie.
1853 President Franklin Pierce appoints Isaac I. Stevens as Governor of Washington Territory. Stevens duties include signing treaties with all the Indian tribes west of the Rockies and north of the Columbia river and surveying the route of the Northern Pacific Railroad. 
1854 March A fight between The Clallam and Army troops in Dungeness left four dead, two Clallams and an Army lieutenant and captain. Three Clallam were arrested. They later escaped from Fort Steilacoom and were followed to a Clallam camp on Hood Canal that was destroyed, killing seven Clallam.. 

1854 April 14th Clallam County is created. Clallam is an Indian word meaning “Strong People” Whiskey Flats, also known as New Dungeness is the county seat. 
1854 At a conference of chiefs from all over Washington Territory, Chetzemoka spoke against war with the whites saying, “If you wanted to kill off the whites, you should have struck long ago. Now it is too late.  Born in 1808 in the S'Klallam village of Ka Tai, at what is now Port Townsend, Chetzemoka was called The Duke of York by white men who had trouble pronouncing his name. He is said to have visited San Francisco in 1851. During this visit, Chetzemoka was greatly impressed by the great numbers of white people. He knew any attack on the settlers would trigger an overwhelming counter attack from a superior military force that could exterminate the S'Klallam. Chetzemoka spoke of the effects of trade between whites and Indians. The S'Klallam traded for Hudson Bay Blankets instead of weaving them from dogs that had been raised for wool. They raised potatoes instead of digging camas and steel axes instead of a beaver tooth adze. 
1855 Captain Abernathy finds a schooner off Diamond Point with 32 deserting British sailors who had died of smallpox.
1855 Chetzemoka chosen by Territorial Governor Isaac Stevens as Chief of the S'Klallam. This meant he was to sign the treaty and be held personally responsible for the good behavior of his people .
1855 Point-No-Point Treaty signed by Clallam who give up 750,000 acres.
1855 January 31 Makah and Governor Isaac Stevens sign the Treaty of Neah Bay. Makah give up 300,000 acres in return for fishing and whaling rights.
1856 January 25th Chief How-yak signed a treaty in Olympia where the Quileute of Lapush gave up 800,000 acres of land and agreed to be moved to the Quinault Agency. The Quileute refused to move. 

1856 Chetzemoka cut the hangman's rope at a lynching in Port Townsend of a young S'Klallam who had been unjustly accused of murdering two soldiers. 
1856 Rufus Holmes is the first permanent settler in Port Angeles called “False Dungeness” at the time.
1856 October 20th American warship U.S.S. Massachussetts orders a large encampment of Canadian Indians near Port Gamble to return north. When they refused the Massachusetts opened fire killing 27 and destroying all their canoes and provisions. The survivors were taken to Victoria and released.
1857 A combined Force of Haida and Snohomish Indians attacked a Chemakum village killing 400. The Chemakum tribe did not survive.
1857 The Dungeness Lighthouse is built. Charles Blake is the first keeper.
1857 A party of Canadian Indians murders Colonel Isaac Ebey a former Customs Collector at Port Townsend at his home on Whidbey Island.
1857 A war party of western S'Klallam planned to attack Port Townsend. Chetzemoka stopped them from exterminating the new town saying if they killed the whites others would come to wipe them out.  After a nine day discussion, Chetzemoka sent a message to the Port Townsend from Signal Rock saying , “The Danger is Passed.”
1857 Ft. Townsend Completed. When terms of the treaties began to be enforced the Indians rebelled. Major Granville O Haller was sent with a company of the 4th infantry to eerect a fort of hewn timbes at the head of Pt. Townsend Bay.
1859 The bark What Cheer sails north from San Francisco carrying smallpox up the west coast.  Natives Americans caught the disease by retrieving bodies, bedding and clothing that were thrown overboard. The resulting epidemic devastated the Peninsula tribes from Ozette to Port Townsend.
1860 The Territorial Legislature passed the first liquor control act to prevent the sale of adulterated liquors. 
1860 Captain Thomas Abernathy and Elliot Cline brought a pair of calves and an 18 month old heifer across the Strait of Juan de Fuca in a dugout canoe. Starting the dairy industry in Dungeness.  
1862 Port Angeles is declared a Federal Reserve and “Second National City” by President Abraham Lincoln. 
1862 Federal Agent Victor Smith moves the Customs House Records from Port Townsend to Port Angeles at with the help of the Cutter Shubrick. Port Angeles becomes the official Port of Entry to Puget Sound.
1863 Customs House in Port Angeles is destroyed by a flood.
1863 Ediz Hook Lighthouse built.
1865 June Confederate Raider Shenandoah destroyed brig Susan Abigailsouthwest of Cape Flattery taking the crew prisoner.
1870 Territorial Legislature passes an act depriving women of the right to vote.
1871 August 31, Chetzemoka ordered to move from Port Townsend to Skokomish. The Clallam loaded all their posessions in canoes which were to be towed to Hood Canal by the side wheeler North Pacific. The S'Klallam village of Ka Tai was burned before the canoes were out of sight. Chetzemoka complained to Olympia and was promised full compensation which never came. 
1875 The S'Klallam in Dungeness were being threatened with removal to Skokomish by military force. A group of S'Klallam pooled their resources and bought 210 acres of land on the beach north of Sequim for 500 dollars.  The land was divided up according to how much each had contributed towards the purchase.  Called “Jamestown” after Jim Balch, one of the organizers of the settlement the land was cleared of stumps and planted with potatoes, oats, turnips and wheat. Livestock was raised. Orchards were planted.
1878- Luther Ford homesteads the Forks Prairie. 
1878 First school in Clallam County is built at Jamestown.
1880 The Last Clallam Potlatch is held at Jamestown. The Potlatch was the most important social function of the tribes in the Pacific Northwest where they gave feasts and gave gifts to celebrate the giving of a name, the return of the salmon, burial of the dead or to celebrate a successful hunt. Special houses were built to hold the ceremony. One Olympic Peninsula Potlatch house was said to be 600 feet long. 
1880 First Church in Clallam County is built at Jamestown.
1882 May 22 Lt. Wittich of Ft. Townsend leads  the first government exploration of the Olympic Mountains by cutting a trail to the two forks of the Dungeness.
1882 Beginning of the Shaker Church. In the fall 1882  John Slocum, a Native American fell into a trance or “died” one morning. Witnesses said his neck was broken. Slocum awoke in the afternoon saying he gone to heaven and was not allowed to enter because of his wicked life. When he awoke he began mission to combine Christianity with native religion. 
1868 Quillehute County  is reated by Territorial Legislature.
1869 Territorial Legislature passes a memorial to Congress requesting the annexation of British Columbia.
1884 Indian Homestead Act.
1885 Lt. Joseph P. O'Neil cuts a trail from Port Angeles, up Ennis Creek to Hurricane Ridge then  southeast to the headwaters of the Dosewallips.
1887 The first sawmill in Port Angeles was built by members of the Puget Soung Co-ooperative Colony a utopian social experiment that built a school, opera house, shipyard and a newspaper based upon the utter cooperation of human beings disbanded shortly after it was founded.
1889 Quileute tribe gets 1 mile square reservation. Quileute Village at Lapush burns while they are away in picking hops in Puyallup.
1889 November 11 Washington becomes a State.
1889 Port Crescent is platted with 166 city blocks a dock and a newspaper. It eventually grew to include a sawmill, saloons, hotels, grocery stores and about 30 homes. 
1889  December The Press Expedition begins it's exploration of the Elwha River by building a scow with green lumber purchased from the locals who have told the expedition there is a lake surrounded by a large prairie just up the river.
1890-March Norman R. Smith built was reported to be “The Shortest Railroad in the World!” Built 15 feet long to “Hold The Pass” that Smith figured the railroad would need to approach the south side of Lake Crescent. Unfortunately it was decided that the railroad would go around the north side of the lake.  
1890 May Chris Morganroth claims homestead 28 miles upstream from mouth of Bogachiel River. 
1890 July 4th  squatters stake out and occupy homestead claims in The Federal Reserve in Port Angeles. 
1890 November 10, an election moved the Clallam County seat from Whiskey Flats (Dungeness) to Port Angeles.  A vigilante brigade headed by Sheriff Sam Morse moved the county records. 
1891 The Federal Reserve In Port Angeles is officially opened for settlement.
1893 Last Clallam Secret Society Initiation held in Port Angeles.
1891 A 4,300 foot dock is built out into Dungeness Bay. 
1892 John Huelsdonk, “The Iron Man of The Hoh” settles on the upper Hoh River.
1893 The Panic of 1893 forces The First National Bank of Port Angeles closes taking people's savings with it.
1895 Port Angeles Harbor hosts U.S. Navy's Pacific Fleet for summer maneuvers. For the next 40 years the towns populations swelled from 5 to up to 20,000 people for three months at a time. This created serious social problems. 
1895 Some farmers set to work with picks and shovels to dig a ditch and build a flume to carry water from the Dungeness river to the Sequim Prairie.
1896 May 1 The first irrigation ditch brings water to the Sequim Prairie. The pioneers celebrated with an Irrigation Festival that became the oldest community celebration in Washington.
1897 President Grover Cleveland establishes Olympic Forest Reserve which ends homesteading by private settlers.

1 comment:

  1. An impressive chronology - a bit of a reminder of just how poorly the Indians were treated.

    Thanks - there are a few (well, more than just a few) tidbits that I had not heard before.