History of Vancouver, Washington 98660


Located at the head of the deep water navigation of Columbia River, Vancouver has a long and rich history that ties in with the history of the nation. Vancouver started out as a military post following the establishment of Fort Vancouver in 1848. The Fort was named after Captain George Vancouver of the Hudson’s Bay Company. Today, the Fort stands as a national historic site, and as a testament of the rich history the city.

Apart from the rich military history of Vancouver, the city also hosted and assembled the first steamboat to operate on the Pacific Ocean, the SS Beaver. The steamboat was shipped from England through a sailboat and the craftsmen of Vancouver assembled the paddle wheel and engines in the city.

The assembly of the SS Beaver in the city is a testament to the manufacturing, farming, and lumbering industries around the city that set up its diverse economic base.

However, Vancouver was not always the bustling and prosperous metropolis that stands today. During the 18th century, the area was inhabited by the Chinook Indians.

When the George Vancouver finally settled in the area, he claimed the land, and at that time, it was the first English settlement in the Pacific Northwest. During these formative years, Vancouver would see several skirmishes included the 1812 war between two companies that operated in the area.

The strategic location of the area made Vancouver an ideal military base, which led to servicemen settling in the area. So many of them settled in the area, that army barracks and homes were built during the 1800s. Some of these buildings still stand today, including the Officer’s Row.

In fact, General Ulysses S. Grant house still stands in Vancouver today, fully renovated to its former glory. Other notable military actions where the city of Vancouver participated in include the Second World War where it acted as a shipway for ships that deterred German submarines.

After the war, the Kaiser shipway would put Vancouver on the map as a center of trade and commerce in the state of Washington. The emergence of the Alcoa Aluminum company and the Kaiser shipyard, Vancouver was set to become a manufacturing and industrial hub in Washington state.

Apart from being a military center, Vancouver is also home to the first Roman Catholic church in the state. The Cathedral was known as St. James Cathedral until the bishop got a transfer to Seattle.

The rich history of Vancouver makes it one of the most exceptional cities in the state of Washington and the entire company.

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