"Of all national assets, archives are the most precious:
they are the gift of one generation to another,
and the extent of our care of them marks the
extent of our civilization." Arthur Doughty.

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San Juan Islands, Washington State, United States
A society formed in 2009 for the purpose of collecting, preserving, celebrating, and disseminating the maritime history of the San Juan Islands and northern Puget Sound area. Check this log for tales from out-of-print publications as well as from members and friends. There are circa 500, often long entries, on a broad range of maritime topics; there are search aids at the bottom of the log. Please ask for permission to use any photo posted on this site. Thank you.

05 July 2016


L-R: Mariners Jo Ann Morse Ridley (1925-2010) 
and Zan Whitaker (1918-2005,)
on board the M.V. Vashon, summer 1978.

They were two of a committee of SJC ferry riders 
to organize
 a party, the BASH ON THE VASHON.

The celebration was held on board, on the last run of the day, 
with all cars left ashore so over 650 passengers 
could eat sandwiches made by dear Loa and helpers
AND dance to the brass band of 

One More Time band, led by Paul Dossett.
That is true; Jo Ann took the photographs and wrote 
a column for the Friday Harbor Journal. The One 
More Time band still has Tom Starr but plays on 
without the Honorable Mr. Dossett or the faithful Vashon.
This photo courtesy of the Journal of the San Juans

Beginning in 1941, the largest and fastest ferry that ever operated on the San Juan Island run to that time, the M.V. Vashon, then eleven years old, was on the scheduled run to carry 68 cars and  passengers from Anacortes through the islands with a chance to go all the way to Sidney, B.C. 
      The Vashon stayed on this route until she sailed off to help out at the Mukilteo-Columbia Beach, Lofall-Southworth and other runs for a few years but no where was she more appreciated than in the San Juans where farmers working in the fields could set their watch by the gentle ka-puckety, ka-puckety, ka-puckety  coming through the islands, heard from down the channel before she was seen at the dock. 
      The Vashon was chosen for a close-up, color cover shot for Sunset magazine in 1965, as she wove her way through sailing vessels at the start of the Shaw Island Classic Sail beginning in Friday Harbor. Artists painted and sketched her and then for some down home good cheer in 1978, islanders threw a welcome-back party for her when she returned to the islands to serve as the "inter-island" boat. 
      Were you on board for the BASH? Someone writing a history book is looking for a few more images before the looming deadline. 

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