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Port of Seattle commissioners meet for the first time on September 12, 1911.
On September 12, 1911, one week after King County voters created the Port of Seattle and elected them, Seattle's port commissioners meet for the first time. Retired Army Corps of Engineers General Hiram M. Chittenden (1858-1917), radical labor organizer Robert Bridges (1861-1921), and Fremont banker Charles E. Remsberg begin the massive task of planning and developing Seattle's first publicly owned and operated port facilities. These will include Fishermen's Terminal on Salmon Bay and the huge piers that now compose Terminal 91 at Smith Cove, both still integral components of Seattle's waterfront, as well as the original Bell Street Pier and the Port's first docks on the Duwamish Waterway. Over the next century, the Port of Seattle will build on these initial efforts as it transforms Elliott Bay into one of the world's leading container ports, builds and operates Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, and develops the fishing fleet terminal, marinas, cruise ship berths, and other facilities that collectively make it a major contributor to regional economic growth.
File 9726: Full Text >
First commissioners for Port of Longview (originally Port of Kelso) take the oath of office on April 28, 1921.
On April 28, 1921, newly elected Port of Kelso commissioners are sworn into office. They were elected when Cowlitz County voters overwhelmingly approved port formation on March 19, 1921. Voting turnout was small since earlier in the week the Kelso State Bank closed, diverting attention from the election. Located on the Cowlitz River, the Port takes the name of the largest city in its district, becoming the Port of Kelso. In 1925 it will relocate to the Columbia River at Longview for its deep-draft channel potential and in 1929 citizens will vote to change its name to Port of Longview. During World War II, the Port will serve wartime needs, but for decades its economy will remain dominated by the lumber trade, with the Long-Bell Lumber Company and Weyerhaeuser prominent. In the 1990s the Port of Longview will shift to manufacturing and in 2009 will receive Port of the Year recognition for economic development efforts in recruiting Export Grain Terminal (EGT), the first such terminal built in the U.S. in the past two decades.
File 9715: Full Text >
Port of Anacortes is formed by public vote on November 22, 1926.
On November 22, 1926, voters approve the creation of the Port of Anacortes and elect three commissioners: W. F. McCracken, Howard J. Sackett, and E. C. Howe. Hoping to build a major maritime port, commissioners will draft the Port's first bond issue for harbor improvements and in August 1927, citizens will pass the bond measure in the amount of $93,000 for acquisition of tidelands and waterfront acreage and to fund port expansion. Despite hard economic times, the Port will build its first dock in 1931 and will set shipping records in 1939. Washington State Ferries will lease land from the Port of Anacortes at Ship Harbor. In 1968 the Port will build the Anacortes Airport, one of two port-owned airports in Skagit County. In 2008 the Washington Public Ports Association will select the Port of Anacortes as its Port of the Year, the honor given for working with the Department of Ecology to clean up contamination of Port-owned property. That year the Port of Anacortes will also receive the American Association of Port Authorities Environmental Award and the Clean Marina Washington Award. Gateway to the San Juan Islands, the Port of Anacortes lies within the city of Anacortes, on Fidalgo Island, in Skagit County.
File 9626: Full Text >
Port of Willapa Harbor holds its first commission meeting on May 1, 1928.
On May 1, 1928, the commissioners of the newly created Port of Willapa Harbor hold the Port's first meeting. Voters created the Port and elected J. William Mason (b. 1891), N. Roy Whitcomb (b. 1877), and Howard Jensen (b. ca. 1882) to the port commission less than a month earlier. The commissioners get to work developing the new port district, which covers most of the northern two-thirds of Pacific County surrounding Willapa Bay on the Pacific coast in southwest Washington. The Port will dedicate its first dock and warehouse on the Willapa River in Raymond a little more than two years later. Over the years, the Port of Willapa Harbor will provide freight-handling facilities for smaller logging and sawmill companies that do not have their own wharves and will develop moorage for fishing and oyster boats that operate out of Bay Center and Tokeland on Willapa Bay. After logging and commercial fishing decline in the 1980s and 1990s, the Port will shift to encouraging industrial and manufacturing growth through developing its onshore land and working with local government and organizations to develop amenities that attract tourists.
File 9500: Full Text >
Margaret Bundy becomes associate editor for the arts weekly Town Crier in Seattle on February 12, 1930.
On February 12, 1930, Seattle writer Margaret Bundy (1904-1961) is named Associate Editor of the weekly arts, culture, and literary magazine, Town Crier
. In publication since 1910, the Town Crier
has just renovated its content, tone, and graphic style in attempt to remain relevant -- and solvent -- as crumbling local and national economies impact advertising and readership.
File 10347: Full Text >
Snow paralyzes Puget Sound war industries beginning January 15, 1943.
On January 15, 1943, snow and a cold snap hits Puget Sound and is the worst cold weather in more than 20 years. War production ceases, schools and stores close, and the U.S. Army temporarily lifts restrictions on weather reports.
File 3623: Full Text >
Officials dedicate the Pioneer Memorial Bridge (Blue Bridge) spanning the Columbia between Pasco and Kennewick on July 30, 1954.
On July 30, 1954, state, county, and local officials dedicate the Pioneer Memorial Bridge (Blue Bridge) spanning the Columbia River between Pasco and Kennewick. The bridge cost $7 million to build. Chairman of the Washington State Roads and Bridges Committee Julia Butler Hansen, Miss Benton County Betty Sue Hill, and Benton County Fair Rodeo Queen Jean Mullineaux cut the ceremonial ribbon. Boys riding bikes dashed ahead of the ceremonial motercade and became the first to cross the bridge.
File 7818: Full Text >
Port of Sunnyside is formed on November 27, 1964.
On November 27, 1964, the Yakima County Board of County Commissioners officially declares the formation of the Port of Sunnyside. The new public port district, Yakima County's first, encompasses an area in and around the City of Sunnyside in the eastern part of the county. Area voters approved creation of the port in the November 3 election. Like many port districts in Eastern Washington, the Port of Sunnyside is intended to promote industrial development and help diversify the area's agriculture-based economy. Sunnyside's port commissioners will take a unique approach to this task, planning and building an Industrial Waste Water Treatment Facility (IWWTF) to serve food processing plants. Opening with a single customer in 1974, the IWWTF will attract many companies, including a large Darigold powdered milk plant, to Sunnyside. In addition to providing waste-water treatment for local food processors, the Port of Sunnyside will develop industrial and business parks that enhance the district's economic development.
File 9756: Full Text >
Port of Moses Lake is created on November 2, 1965, for the purpose of taking over the soon-to-be-closed Larson Air Force Base.
On November 2, 1965, voters in Moses Lake approve by a landslide the creation of the Port of Moses Lake, for the purpose of taking over the soon-to-be-closed Larson Air Force Base. Proponents of the port district (also known as Grant County Port District No. 10) were aware that Larson Air Force Base, with its long runways and outstanding flight conditions, was scheduled for closure in June 1966. The port district encompasses 380 square miles. The federal General Services Administration will grant the Port the runways and flight facilities and the airport, renamed Grant County Airport, and later, Grant County International Airport will become a busy and important flight-training center for both military and commercial pilots. In 1968, Japan Air Lines will begin training its pilots there. In 1974, the Port will obtain more acreage and develop industrial storage and manufacturing facilities. Economic development will become significant and the Port of Moses Lake Industrial Park will attract major tenants. Japan Air Lines will leave in 2009, but the airport will continue to be an important training facility for The Boeing Co. and for military pilots.
File 9721: Full Text >
Timber Fish Wildlife Agreement offers new way to manage state forests on August 22, 1986.
On August 22, 1986, the Timber Fish Wildlife Agreement offers a new way to manage state forests by allowing all the stake holders -- tribes, loggers, environmentalists, government agencies -- to develop logging practices together. The agreement avoids the sometimes acrimonious process in which competing interests present sometimes conflicting evidence to the Forest Practices Board which then has to make a decision. Under the new process, the parties develop methods for harvesting timber that still protect the environment.
File 5299: Full Text >
Dean A. Mellberg shoots and kills four people and wounds 22 at Fairchild Air Force Base hospital on June 20, 1994.
On June 20, 1994, Dean A. Mellberg (1974-1994), age 20, enters the Fairchild Air Force Base hospital annex with an MAK-90 assault rifle and shoots and kills Major Thomas E. Brigham, psychiatrist, and Captain Alan W. London, psychologist, who both recommended his discharge from the Air Force. Mellberg then walks through the hospital and opens fire at anything that moves. He kills two more people and wounds 22 during the murderous rampage before being killed himself by Air Force Security Police officer Andrew P. Brown. It is the worst mass murder in Spokane County history.
File 8767: Full Text >
Explosion and fire at the Equilon Puget Sound Refinery in Anacortes kill six refinery workers on November 25, 1998.
On Wednesday afternoon, November 25, 1998, an explosion and fire erupts in the coking plant at the Equilon Puget Sound Refinery in Anacortes, killing six refinery workers who were attempting to restart the delayed coking unit following a power outage. The tragedy is the worst industrial accident since the Department of Labor and Industries began enforcing the Washington State Industrial Safety and Health Act (WISHA), more than 26 years ago.
File 5618: Full Text >
State Senator Jim West from Spokane is named Senate majority leader on November 15, 2002.
On November 15, 2002, state Senator Jim West (1951-2006) from Spokane is named Senate majority leader. In the previous session, West had been the Senate minority leader, but in the fall elections the Republicans retook the Senate majority by a one-seat margin. West has a history of angry confrontations, often with members of his own party, yet he is widely considered an effective leader and strategist and during a closed-door caucus meeting in Seattle the Republicans select him as their leader. He will survive a threatened defection by a member of his own party, as well as cancer surgery, and will preside over a productive session. West will serve as majority leader only for the 2003 legislative session because later in 2003 he will be elected mayor of Spokane and give up his Senate seat. He will serve as Spokane mayor for two years and be recalled in 2005 over a gay sex scandal. West will die of cancer in 2006.
File 10957: Full Text >
Longview dedicates Weyerhaeuser Centennial Bridge on May 28, 2003.
On May 28, 2003, the City of Longview, in Cowlitz County, dedicates the Weyerhaeuser Centennial Bridge. Also called the Centennial Garden Pedestrian Bridge, the wooden structure connects a small island in Lake Sacajawea to the shore in downtown Longview. The bridge provides public access to a Japanese garden and symbolizes the sister-city relationship between Longview and Waco, Japan. In 2006, the 100-foot-long wooden pedestrian bridge will win first place in the National Timber Bridge Competition.
File 7991: Full Text >
Collapse of a 210-foot construction crane in Bellevue kills one person on November 16, 2006.
On Thursday night, November 16, 2006, a 210-foot tower crane, used in building construction, collapses in downtown Bellevue, damaging three buildings and killing Matthew Ammon in his top-floor apartment. After a six month investigation, Washington State Department of Labor and Industries will determine the collapse was due to catastrophic failure of a custom-designed, non-standard base. The tragedy will spur the state legislature to pass a crane-safety law that will be among the nation's strictest.
File 8164: Full Text >
Explosion and fire at Atlas Castings and Technology in Tacoma kills truck driver and injures three workers on October 6, 2007.
On Saturday afternoon, October 6, 2007, a tremendous explosion and fire erupts at the Atlas Castings and Technology foundry in Tacoma, injuring the driver of a propane tanker truck and three foundry workers. The truck driver, Charles W. McDonald (1943-2007), age 64, is severely burned and will die a week later at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. The subsequent investigation will determine that the accident was caused by a faulty connection between the 8,000-gallon tanker truck and two stationary propane tanks. Liquefied propane gas, released during delivery, was ignited by a hot electric-arc furnace inside the foundry. Damage to Atlas property is estimated to be $14 million.
File 8612: Full Text >
Explosion and fire at the Tesoro Refinery in Anacortes kills seven refinery workers on April 2, 2010.
Early Friday morning, on April 2, 2010, an explosion and fire erupt in the Naphtha Hydrotreater Unit at the Tesoro Refinery in Anacortes, killing seven refinery workers in the process of returning the heat exchangers to operation after being down for maintenance. The tragedy is the worst industrial accident to date since the Department of Labor and Industries began enforcing the Washington State Industrial Safety and Health Act (WISHA), enacted in 1973.
File 9717: Full Text >
Ceremony marks start of demolition of Elwha River hydroelectric dams on September 17, 2011.
On September 17, 2011, Governor Chris Gregoire (b. 1947), many more state and federal officials, Lower Elwha Klallam tribal leaders, conservationists, and other dignitaries attend a ceremony on an Elwha River bluff to celebrate the beginning of dam removal on the river. The takedown of the 108-foot-high Elwha Dam and 210-foot-tall Glines Canyon Dam is the largest dam removal in the history of North America. The hydroelectric dams helped power the industrial development of Port Angeles but, built without fish passage, blocked salmon and other anadromous (ocean-going) fish from most of the Elwha River watershed, which since 1940 has been part of Olympic National Park. It has taken more than three decades since the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, soon joined by environmental groups, first called for removing the dams to win approval and then funding for the massive river-restoration project. Actually demolishing the dams is quicker: Elwha Dam will disappear within six months and removal of Glines Canyon Dam will be completed in September 2014. As demolition proceeds the river ecosystem, aided by a major habitat-restoration effort, will begin recovering rapidly, with increasing numbers of salmon appearing above each former dam as soon as it is gone.
File 11011: Full Text >