"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.


Deadman Island, San Juan Channel, SJC.
Detail of a Metzgers© Map of August 1961.
Scale: 2 inches = 1 mile. Click to enlarge.
From the Library of the S. P. H. S.

Seattle Woman Wins Island as Prize in Exton Realty Contest

A contest sponsored by the Exton Realty Company of Orcas Island culminated 31 August 1948 with Mrs. Richard Annibal of Seattle winning Deadman Island as first prize.
      The Extons had owned the small prize island for some time and it was given away by them with no strings attached to the winner of the contest that started in June and closed 31 August. It was motivated by the sponsors as a means of acquainting more people with the unique beauty and climate of the San Juans.
      The contest was open to anyone who turned in a 100 or less word essay on "Why I want to Live in the San Juan Islands." Mrs. Annibal, mother of three children, had a vision of what she knew was the best place to live an independent and simple life with her family. Her essay was judged the best and is printed as follows:

Why I Want to Live in the San Juans

      I want my children to have as their American heritage a simple and independent life where values are not based on money alone.
      I want them to know and remember that in spite of wars, disease, and destruction, the earth remains unchanged. Grass grows, flowers bloom, rivers run, season after season. The earth alone can be depended upon.
      I want them to have the opportunity to know and love Puget Sound with its misty horizons, fascinating shorelines, and squat white ferries.
      I want them to be able to say of the beautiful San Juan Islands, "this is home."
      Mrs. Exton says that she has been unable to learn the origin of the name Deadman Island and that even those whom she has questioned who have lived here most all their lives are unable to explain the reason for the name.
      Deadman Island is located 150 yards off Lopez Island, due east of Cattle Point on San Juan Island. It is possible to drive within 200 yards of the Lopez shore that faces Deadman, but crossing a 150 yard channel between the two islands without a boat is a problem. Vegetation on this nearly two acre island is mainly wild flowers, cacti, and shrubs.
The Orcas Islander, 7 October 1948.

Deadman Island is now owned by the Nature Conservancy and is part of the San Juan Islands National Wildlife Refuge. Public access is not permitted.

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