"The past actually happened but history is only what someone wrote down." A. Whitney Brown.

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San Juan Archipelago, 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 700, 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.


Mailboat OSAGE,
Built at Reed Yard, Decatur Island.
Homeport of Bellingham, WA.,
with a route through San Juan County.
Documented at 59.1' x 14.7' x 7.7'
Value of $6,500.
Photo by Jacobson from the archives of the S.P.H.S.©
"At Decatur Island Sunday at 3:30 p.m. the motor ship OSAGE, the latest addition to the fleet of the San Juan Transportation Co was launched. She was christened by Miss Dorothy Maxwell, eldest daughter of Capt. C. E. Maxwell, the company's manager.
      In the presence of 100 persons, including all the island's residents, Miss Maxwell broke a bottle of grape juice across the OSAGE's bow, as she said: 'I christen thee OSAGE. Long may you sail the sea and bring us all prosperity.' Miss Maxwell is the granddaughter of Capt Willard Maxwell, veteran mariner of Bellingham.     
      The grape juice was furnished by Mrs. Sargent, a former island resident.
      Among the spectators was the builder of the boat, William Reed, who lives on Decatur Island and who has built there 52 vessels. Others were forty-four Bellingham residents who went over on the company's CHICKAWANA and returned on Sunday night on the new craft, that was towed to the Quackenbush dock by the CHICKAWANA.
      The launching was preceded by a picnic dinner on the beach. On the trip to Bellingham, dinner was served on the OSAGE, which proudly displayed an American flag, the gift of Cecil A. Morse, president of the Morse Hardware Co. The flag was presented to Capt. Maxwell before he left Bellingham for the launching.
      The OSAGE replaced the SAN JUAN II, that was wrecked on Blakely Island the day before Christmas 1929. 
Wrecked on December 24 1929, on Blakely Island, WA.
Photo scan courtesy of the Maxwell family.

She was 65' long and had a beam of 16'. There are two decks and accommodations for 120 passengers, a larger number than the SAN JUAN II. The OSAGE has attractive lines and is staunchly built. She will be powered with the engine of her predecessor, to be installed in Bellingham. Capt. Maxwell says he expects the OSAGE to be ready for service in two or three weeks.
      Miss Maxwell, the sponsor, is a true daughter of the sea. Until she was ready to attend school she lived aboard the SAN JUAN II.
      The new boat was named the OSAGE because Capt Willard Maxwell came from the Osage country."
The Bellingham Herald, Bellingham, WA.
Reprinted in the Friday Harbor Journal, no date known.
More about the Maxwell founding of the San Juan Transportation Company and the operation of their fleet can be viewed on this site here.

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