COMMENTARY by Evan Smith: Happy belated birthday

Friday, November 13, 2020

Courtesy Washington State Archives

Happy belated birthday, Washington.

Wednesday was the 131st Anniversary of Washington’s admission to the Union as the nation’s 42nd state.

On November 11, 1889, Washington residents got the statehood they had sought since Washington became a territory in 1852.

When Washington became a territory in 1852, residents sought to influence decision-makers by naming the territory’s two largest counties after President-elect Franklin Pierce and Vice President-elect Rufus King. They got statehood; it just took 37 years.

When Washington Territory had separated from Oregon, residents had considered naming it Columbia Territory but rejected the name to avoid confusion with the District of Columbia. Instead, they chose the name Washington and got the same confusion.

Yes, Wednesday was also Veteran’s Day, the 102nd anniversary of the end of World War I.


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