VIPS in the Port of San Francisco during the 1800s

Gray's Harbor Commercial

October 21, 1888, The Sunday Oregonian, Portland, Oregon

Of Interest to Gray's Harbor

San Francisco

Charles P. Holmes, Charles Hanson, E. O. Herrick, W. J. Adams, C. F. A. Talbot, W. H. Talbot and G. W. Watson have formed a company called the Gray's Harbor Commercial Co. to engage in shipping, the lumber business and in towing vessels in and out of this port. The capital is $150,000. These men are all prominently connected with what is styled here the "pine lumber ring," Mr. Herrick being its president.

The company, it is said, proposes to build two or three two boats for service in this port, and to handle all the vessels of the pine trust.

W. H. Talbot said this morning that the men named would meet early next week and decide what to do. He would neither deny or affirm that the company intended to handle the trust's ships, but merely said that at present he considered rates pretty low.

Grays Harbor County takes its name from the broad, shallow bay that drains five rivers in southwest Washington. The dense forests of spruce, hemlock, cedar, and Douglas fir attracted loggers and mill operators and at the turn of the twentieth century, communities such as Aberdeen, Hoquiam, Cosmopolis, and Montesano flourished. Immigrant wage earners flooded in to harvest green gold. One hundred years later, the county struggled to reinvent itself without logging, milling, and fishing. The Native Americans who were shoved aside by the settlers reemerged with self-government and new enterprises.

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 reservation was expanded by Congress in 1873, but the practice of granting allotments to individual tribal members resulted in 93 percent of the reservation passing into non-Indian hands (alienation). Non-treaty Chinook, Chehalis, and Cowlitz tribal members were also allowed to apply for allotments, which were often then sold to timber companies. On March 22, 1975, the members formed the Quinault Indian Nation with headquarters in Taholah.  

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Sources: As noted on entries and through research centers including National Archives, San Bruno, California; CDNC: California Digital Newspaper Collection; San Francisco Main Library History Collection; and Maritime Museums and Collections in Australia, China, Denmark, England, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Wales, Norway, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, etc.

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