This Week in Cascadia March 11-18 is a weekly segment with interesting facts from around the Pacific Northwest that cover each day in history that are released every Sunday.
March 11, 1850 – Richard Blanshard arrives at Fort Victoria in future Victoria, BC and reads a proclamation establishing the new colony of Vancouver Island, with himself as the first Governor. You can learn more about Fort Victoria here.
March 12, 1915 – Seattle longshoremen and others on the West Coast boycott all ships going to or coming from Vancouver, British Columbia. They do so to support striking Vancouver, B.C. longshoremen. During the boycott, violence occurred between the members of the longshoremen union and the nonunion help hired to load and unload the ships. The longshoremen called off the boycott when the strike was settled twelve days later. Read more from History Link here.
March 13, 1914 – Around noon the Lake Union dam burst during the construction of the Lake Washington Ship Canal and the locks that connect Lake Union with Puget Sound. Over the next 24 hours the lake drops 10 feet, and the roughly 200 houseboats moored along the shores of Lake Union begin a slow ride to the bottom of the lake. Some toppled, while other with asymmetrical supports tilted at about 45 degrees, and a few went out to sea. However, little actual injury was reported. The waters slowly receded and homeowners were for the most part able to protect their belongings. Read more from the History Link here.
March 14, 1946 –Jack Cluck, the attorney of Seattle’s Group Health Cooperative (a coalition of cooperatives, granges, and labor unions) meets William “Sandy” MacColl, M.D., pediatrician with the Medical Security Clinic, at an East Side Forum on health care reform. The two health care visionaries begin formulating a merger of their organizations, which will spur development of the Group Health Cooperative of Puget Sound. Read more from History Link here.
March 15, 1875 – The Phelps Company performs Seattle’s first Shakespeare play, “The Taming of the Shrew,” at Yesler’s Hall, located at the southeast corner of Front Street (renamed 1st Avenue) and Cherry Street. Read more here.
March 16, 1973 – At 5:30 pm 32 hydraulic jacks took their final bite into Portland’s 6,000-ton Fremont Bridge center span and hoisted it the final 2 1/4 inches into position. Ironworkers immediately began fastening side plates to the 902-foot center span and the bridge approach ironwork so the arch would not sway over the weekend. Portland’s Fremont Bridge has the distinction of having the longest main span of any bridge in Oregon, and is the second longest tied arch bridge in the world. Until the planned Caruthers Bridge is completed, the Fremont remains the newest bridge spanning the Willamette River in Portland. Learn more from Dave Knows Portland here.
March 17, 1934 – Puyallup Valley bulb farmers sponsor their first Daffodil Parade to promote their crop. The parade is a modest procession of automobiles and bicycles festooned with daffodils. The valley’s rich, alluvial soil had attracted settlers since the middle 1800s and supported bountiful agricultural industries, first for hops, then for berries, but hop lice destroyed the hop industry in 1891 and market economics squeezed the berry farmers. The Daffodil Festival is now institutionalized, a year-round production managed by a mostly volunteer, nonprofit organization. There is only one full-time employee. It oversees several events through the year, including several other parades. Today the Daffodil Parade consists of four parades in one, appearing in Tacoma, Puyallup, Sumner, and Orting in one day. Learn more about the Daffodil Festival here.