And years later, Seattle seems to have become the city that members of the Denny party envisioned and more, with room for not 1, people, but millions in the region. Bythe population had cracked 1, and byit was a staggering 42, and counting. But Seattle's first settlers and many of those to follow saw a grand city of the future and were prepared to topple anything that stood in the way.
From filling in the tide flats to cutting the ship canal and lowering Lake Washington which essentially dried up the Black River to cutting down hills that were thought to interfere cowixhan travel around the city, environmental interference alone made it hard -- if not impossible -- for natives to continue living the way they had. No sooner had most of the Denny party moved to the east side of Duwamish Elliott Bay Charles Terry and John Low stayed at Alki, which they called New York, after Terry's hometownthan they essentially invited Henry Yesler to move to town and set up his new steam-powered sawmill, Garfield says.
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Instead of seeking out land to farm, like most who crossed the Oregon Trail, the Denny party was looking for a place to build a community. Coupled with ample timber to harvest and mill, Yesler prospered and so did Seattle. After unloading all their worldly possessions on the beach, the women and children of the party sit down on a log.
Maria Denny thinks her ancestors would be pleased to see what the city has become in its relatively short lifetime. Though they were not the first settlers to come to the Puget Sound, this group was different, Garfield says. As elsewhere in the West, the influx of settlers in Seattle did much to harm and displace the native communities that had thrived here for centuries before.
But he and the others finished the cabin and spent that winter on the western shores of what was then called Duwamish Bay, but as soon as winter broke into spring, Denny, Boren and Bell set out to scout a better location, safer from tides and fit for a deep-water harbor. The elder generation had stayed behind in Portland after the wagon journey, while the somethings the Bells and Lows were in their early 30s made their way to the Puget Sound to find a place to build a settlement with access to shipping.
After a warm welcome from those natives excluding the Battle of Copanion, which saw two settlers killed and possibly as many as 28 nativesnew settlers chose to name the city after a Duwamish chief named Sealth, who was not enthusiastic about having the town named for him, despite his encouragement that natives accommodate the settlers. To about David Denny's vital role in the early city.
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The women, feeling defeated to find no real shelter after their long trek, sob. Her great-great-uncle, Rolland Denny, was just six weeks old at that landing, where natives greeted them and offered clam nectar to the infant, Maria Denny says. They were young, for one.
Of her connection to Seattle's earliest founders, Maria Denny is proud, she says.