The King and I, 1913

On the right we have the unshakable Mr. Calvin Washburn standing next to a 76 pound King salmon caught near Friday Harbor in the San Juan Islands in 1913. Granted he is outweighed and undersized by comparison but you have to give Calvin credit for bravely standing up to the king as if to speak truth to power. You can see it in his eyes. Wonderful image that could come from nowhere else on earth than the Pacific Northwest.

King and boy

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This site is about the way history, in this case of a city and it's surrounds, is remembered or recorded in stories and small bits of memory. It's also about the way images and stories go together, how they inform and enrich each other and how we as thinking people fill in the content between a narrative and a visual document. So here is my city in time past, the way it looked and the people and events that create its character. For more than 20 years I have taught a 5 credit course on the History of Tacoma at the University of Washington Tacoma. With an average of 30 or 40 students a year, each doing a research paper as their primary focus for the course, I have benefited from many paths of inquiry and many researched and assembled stories. Here are some of them in the retelling along with the treasures of photographs and images in the collections of the Washington State Historical Society, Tacoma Public Library, University of Washington Digital Archives, Washington State Archives at the Office of the Secretary of State, Library of Congress, Washington State University, Alaska State Library, and many other archives, libraries and private collections.

1 comment

  1. This was my uncle “Cal” Washburn, a much-loved brother to my paternal grandmother, Grace “Dolly (Washburn) Dillon. I was privileged to know him in my youth is he is much missed since passing away in 1978. I have other photos of him with this fish on that day and also of the local Friday Harbor photographer who took them if anyone is interested.


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