Rare early map of Chehalis County (which would become Gray's Harbor County in 1915), published in Seattle in 1894.
This is apparently the second of two maps of Chehalis County published by Anderson, replacing a smaller map first issued in 1881. The map provides remarkable detail in the county for such an early map, including the line of the Puget Sound & Gray's Harbor Rail Road, the Shelton & Southwestern Railroad, the Peninsula Railroad, etc.
The vast majority of the US General Land Office Surveys are completed in the southern portion of the County, with a large area around Quinault Lake, Raft River and Quinault River still unsurveyed.
Gray's Harbor is one of the earliest areas of the Pacific Northwest to be reached by Americans. On May 7, 1792, Boston fur trader Robert Gray crossed the bar into the bay he called Bullfinch Harbor, but which later cartographers would label Chehalis Bay, then Grays Harbor. Irishman John Work of the Hudson's Bay Company explored the area in 1824. English botanist David Douglas paddled down, then back up the Chehalis River in 1825. U.S. Navy Passed Midshipman Henry Eld Jr., of the U.S. Exploring Expedition under Lieutenant Charles Wilkes, mapped the Chehalis River, Grays Harbor, and the coast down to Cape Disappointment in 1841. Eld was unimpressed with Grays Harbor because of the narrow entrance and its shallow bottom, suitable only for small vessels.
The county's first permanent white settler was Irishman William O'Leary (1821-1901). He paddled and trekked overland from Oregon to the Chehalis River, then by canoe down to the future site of Cosmopolis, just above the river's outlet into Grays Harbor. O'Leary planted potatoes and a vegetable garden, and built a split-cedar cabin in the style of the local tribal peoples. While others built farms, businesses, industries, and towns, O'Leary was content to grow and gather his own food and cut his own hair. He remained fiercely independent and was regarded by his fellow citizens as an "odd character" (Van Syckle, River Pioneers, 81).
In the 1850s, more settlers occupied the country drained by the Chehalis River, but many filed Donation Land Claims only to move on to other opportunities without proving up their claims. Mainer Isaiah L. Scammon and his wife Lorinda (Hopkins) Scammon built a home on their Donation Claim at the head of tidewater (the limit for sailing ships could navigate up the river without assistance). This was a point convenient for river travelers to stop for the night and the couple operated a public house there. Scammon practiced his blacksmith trade for the next 36 years as well as serving as a postmaster, judge, church leader, and school administrator.
Scammon's wife Lorinda named the claim Mount Zion, following her deep religious convictions, and later changed it to Montesano, meaning Mountain of Health. In 1854, the Territorial Legislature created Chehalis County encompassing most of southwest Washington. The legislators placed the county seat at Bruceport on Willapa (Shoalwater) Bay, very remote for the Chehalis River settlers. In 1860, the Legislature settled the boundary between Pacific County and Chehalis County.
In 1855, the Quinault, Hoh, Queets, and Quileute tribes signed the Quinault River Treaty with the Washington Territorial Governor Isaac I. Stevens (1818-1862) ceding 1.2 million acres of the Olympic Peninsula to the United States in exchange for a common reservation and fishing rights. The Chehalis Tribe received a 4,214-acre reservation in eastern Chehalis County in 1864 near what would become Oakville (shown on the map).
The map is exceedingly rare. We note no copies of this map on OCLC or elsewhere, although the University of Washington holds what appears to be an earlier blue print edition of the map, entitled Anderson's map of Chehalis County, Wash. Ter. and notes that the map shows southern two-thirds of Chehalis County (now called Grays Harbor County) ca. 1881.