Telling the Stories of our Lives: Orv Harrelson

Funded by a generous grant from the Tacoma Arts Commission in partnership with Puget Sound Book Artists, Anthea Karanasos Hubanks and Tacoma Seniors Write launched a series of creative writing workshops titled “Telling the Stories of Our Lives” at three Tacoma Senior Centers. The workshops consisted of a fun medley of classes for Elders interested in telling their stories through memoir, prose, letters, haiku, work … Continue reading Telling the Stories of our Lives: Orv Harrelson

Titlow Tales and Galloping Gertie

November 7, 2020 marks the 80th anniversary of the collapse of the first Tacoma Narrows Bridge, also known as “Galloping Gertie.” In honor of that anniversary, Dale Wirsing, a longtime Tacoma Historical Society board member, has been kind enough to share his memories of that day in the account that follows. It was in 1938 or thereabouts that Vern and Hazel Wirsing moved from Tacoma’s … Continue reading Titlow Tales and Galloping Gertie

Save Our Bridge: How One (Large) Piece of Tacoma History Was Protected from Destruction

When construction on the 11th Street Bridge was completed in 1913, 10,000 residents flocked to the site to celebrate its opening. The fanfare was not only proportional to the bridge’s steep $600,000 price tag, but also comparable to its importance in Tacoma. As a port town with numerous waterways crisscrossing its land, Tacoma requires bridges to accommodate land traffic. Thanks to the 11th Street Bridge, … Continue reading Save Our Bridge: How One (Large) Piece of Tacoma History Was Protected from Destruction

Virtual Tour: 1885 Chinese Expulsion

Tacoma Historical Society is honored to contribute to this year’s virtual Tacoma Moon Festival with the release of a new virtual tour of the people and places associated with the 1885 Chinese Expulsion. The tour can be explored online from the comfort of your home, or as a walking or driving tour. Click here to get started! The Tacoma Moon Festival is an annual event … Continue reading Virtual Tour: 1885 Chinese Expulsion

Capturing Your COVID-19 Stories

A frequent challenge for local history researchers is a lack of first-hand accounts of an event from the past. Perhaps people at the time didn’t recognize that they were living through something significant. Or perhaps they did, and their time and energy was taken up with that something significant, so much that they couldn’t pause to document their experience. With this in mind, we are … Continue reading Capturing Your COVID-19 Stories

Ode to Lincoln Hardware

The first people I met when I moved into Tacoma’s Lincoln District in 1999 were the owners of Lincoln Hardware, which I quickly learned was a neighborhood fixture with a long history of serving our community. And why did I meet them, rather than other neighbors, first? Because the lock on the front door of my historic home broke, and needed fixing, quick. I walked … Continue reading Ode to Lincoln Hardware

Lions, and Tigers, and Bears, Oh My!

After months in quarantine children and adults alike are in need of some much needed fresh air and adventure, and what better place to find that then at the newly re-opened Point Defiance Zoo? Here’s a little bit of history on the zoo before you head out to see the animals!  When the locals of Tacoma think of Point Defiance Zoo, we think of cute … Continue reading Lions, and Tigers, and Bears, Oh My!

Stop and Smell the Roses at Point Defiance

Roses are red, violets are blue, and the Tacoma Rose garden is waiting for you.  The rose garden located in Point Defiance Park has been blooming with life every summer since 1895. The man who started this beautiful garden was E. R. Roberts. He was born in North Wales and was no stranger to flowers when he ventured to Tacoma, having trained at many European … Continue reading Stop and Smell the Roses at Point Defiance