This book is very old but quite good. It is very easy to read and has great drawings. It gives an overview of the first explorations and white exploitation of the Pacific Northwest and Alaska and how all the places got their names. Many famous explorers including Captains Bering, Cook and Vancouver are mentioned. Many of us that live here in Puget sound my have presumed that Puget was a Native American name but it is in fact the name of the the young explorer and mapper Lieutenant Peter Puget who on an assignment from British Captain Vancouver first mapped Puget Sound and was rewarded for this successful effort by his commanding officer Captain Vancouver with having the Sound named in his honor. His ship anchored near what would eventually become Seattle.
The search for the Northwest passages as the primary motivation for the explorations is constantly referred too. The harvest of the Sea Otters who's pelts the Russians and British both found fetched a hefty price in China is presented as the monetary motivation for interest in the area.
The competition between the Spanish and the British to lay claim to what we now call Washington State is presented in great and interesting detail. The British won of course if the Spanish had won this area might well now be known as Northern California.
Unfortunetly the Native Americans are presented as dim witted, dishonest and very savage this may offend modern readers.
There really are though some wonderful stories of true adventure here; some hair raising that will put you on the edge of your seat and some hilarious tales that will make you laugh out loud.
If you enjoy reading about the Lewis and Clark expedition and stories about the early white settlement of Washington and Seattle you may consider this the prequel. I can wholeheartedly reccomend it for readers of all ages.
PLEASE DO NOT PUT A HOLD ON THIS BOOK!
Every time people put holds on it the library transfers it to the reference section probably because it is out of print and they only have two copies.
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