Fremont Historical Society presents an exhibit “From Ross Creek to Ship Canal Canal: The impact of the Ship Canal on Fremont” at the Fremont Public Library. The exhibit will run throughout the month of May. A reception will be held on May 13, followed by a talk by historian Jennifer Ott. (Click here for details on the reception or the talk.) Please refer to the Seattle Public Library’s website for library opening hours.
Photo: Fremont Bridge. Courtesy, Valarie Bunn.
May is National History Month and we will be jumping on board with a number of activities celebrating the centennial of the Locks and the Ship Canal. Join us!
The Administration Building will be open every day 10 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. to view displays provided by local history groups. The highlight of the displays is a six-foot long model of the S.S. Roosevelt which was the official boat on Opening Day 100 years ago. The Visitor Center, open daily 10:00 a.m. to 6 p.m., will feature special displays of antique tools and instruments that were used in the engineering and construction of the Locks.
Take note of the following special activities:
Saturday, May 6, Children’s fishing game 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.; Chat with a Historian 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Sunday, May 7, ceremony and reception honoring Clayton Naset, builder of the Roosevelt model 1:00 p.m.; Chat with a Historian, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.; Kid’s Toy Boat Building, 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Saturday, May 20, Chat with a Historian, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Sunday, May 21, Chat with a Historian, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Historian David B. Williams will discuss the history of the Lake Washington Ship Canal and the Ballard Locks at a meeting of the Ballard Historical Society. Learn what drove civic leaders to plan a waterway in a city already surrounded by water. Open to the public. Donations will be accepted. Light refreshments will be served.
“Hiram’s Hunt!” The Lockspot Café is hosting a scavenger hunt to help celebrate the 100th birthday of the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks. All proceeds will go to Discover Your Northwest which is raising funds to refurbish the fish ladder. Teams of up to six can pre-register at The Lockspot for $80, or $100 the day of the event. A hot meal will be provided at the end of the hunt as well as prizes. Costumes are encouraged (especially if they are nautical!) with a prize for the best team. Please dress for the weather. Hiram’s Hunt will begin at the entrance to the Locks and will range through old Ballard.
We’ve put together a slide show highlighting some first person accounts of the Lake Washington Ship Canal — the cost, the consequences, and the memories. Find it here.
Maritime Folknet has announced a songwriting contest to commemorate the centennial of the Lake Washington Ship Canal; January 9, 2017 is the deadline for submissions. The top fifteen songs will be professionally recorded by Jack Straw Cultural Center, with funding from King County 4Culture. All muscial genres are encouraged. Find all the details on their website: http://maritimefolknet.org/making-the-cut/
Read about the St. Paul, a square-rigged sailing ship of old that for a few years served as a museum and aquarium at the Locks. The story is on HistoryLink.org here.
HistoryLunch is HistoryLink’s annual fundraiser. This year, we will explore the history of the Hiram M. Chittenden (Ballard) Locks as HistoryLink builds up steam for the upcoming centennial in 2017. HistoryLink has many plans in store for next year, including the release of our new book and educational curricula, various speaking events, and the addition of both audio and video materials to our newly designed website — all of which will be here in time for the centennial.
HistoryLunch 2016 will kick off our centennial commemoration of the Ballard Locks. Award-winning author of Too High and Too Steep: Reshaping Seattle’s Topography, geologist, natural historian, and co-author of our upcoming book on the Ballard Locks, David B. Williams will delight and amaze you with the story of how and why the locks came to be.
To RSVP, call the HistoryLink office at (206) 447-8140 or visit historylunch.historylink.org. The suggested donation for the lunch is $175 per person.
On July 4, 1917 the Government Locks were officially dedicated and the event was marked by a great celebration highlighted by a parade of some 200 vessels led by the Roosevelt. Many local yacht clubs participated in the days’ festivities and some of the boats taking part in the display are still sailing, some in local waters.
With the centennial of the Locks coming up in 2017, the Friends of the Ballard Locks decided to search for those 1917 parade participants. They began with an article from the Seattle Daily Times which listed the 83 boats which passed in review before the Roosevelt while she was moored in Lake Washington. Documents from the Queen City Yacht Club added the names of their members’ vessels which took part in the parade.
Two of the parade boats are still in the area, the Honey Boy and the Glorybe. The Zina, tragically, was destroyed in a fire several years ago; she had participated in previous anniversary celebrations of the Ship Canal and came just short of reaching the centennial.
The group has uncovered when many of the boats were built, where they were built, 1917 ownership, etc. but their current whereabouts is elusive. With help from the public, they hope to locate others which were part of the 1917 festivities so they can be acknowledged for their historic significance during the Centennial in 2017.
A list of all known boats from the day is on our blog
If you have any information about these boats or would like to chat about what we have found so far, please contact Susan.
Dick Wagner, the Founding Director of The Center for Wooden Boats, explores the ecology of the lake destined to unite the saltwater and freshwater sides of the Ship Canal. Read all about it here.