Edmonds

Edmonds is the oldest incorporated city in Snohomish County. Logger George Brackett founded Edmonds in 1890, naming the city either for Vermont Sen. George Franklin Edmunds[6] or in association with the nearby Point Edmund, named by Charles Wilkes in 1841 and later changed to Point Edwards.[7] Brackett came to the future site of Edmonds while paddling a canoe north of Seattle, searching for timber. When a gust of wind hit his canoe, Brackett beached in a location later called "Brackett's Landing".[8]

The town was named Edmonds in 1884, but was not incorporated until 1890 as an official "village fourth class" of Snohomish County. In that same year, Brackett sold 455 acres (1.84 km2) to the Minneapolis Realty and Investment Company. The town was plotted and a wharf was added along the waterfront. Modest houses and commercial structures sprouted up with a row of shingle mills dominating the cityscape.

In 1891, the Great Northern Railway came through and early settlers and investors grew hopeful that Edmonds would prosper. Unfortunately, the Panic of 1893created business setbacks and the town owners foreclosed. Brackett reclaimed his town and along with other early settlers continued to develop its infrastructure. By 1900 there was regular passenger ferry service available by the steam-powered "mosquito fleet" of private ferryboats from Edmonds to Seattle.

Edmonds suffered major fires in 1909 and 1928, and many buildings were lost. The first car arrived in Edmonds in 1911. As more roads were established, Edmonds experienced steady growth along with commercial and residential development.[9]

Historic sites[edit]

The Edmonds South Snohomish Historical Society resides in the city's only National Historic Place - the old Carnegie Library of Edmonds.[10] Located on 5th Ave, it was built in 1910 to serve as a library and education building, and opened to the public February 17, 1911.[11] It now serves as the Edmonds Historical Museum.

The Edmonds Fountain/Gazebo[edit]

 
The Edmonds fountain.

The Edmonds Fountain, a local landmark, has been a major source of contention over the past decades. The current Edmonds Fountain is located in the center of the intersection of 5th Avenue and Main St. Until 1970, every holiday season the Edmonds municipal Christmas tree stood on this spot. In 1970 the original fountain, an obscure twisted sculpture incorporating water elements, was erected. Often the target of high school pranks (such as adding soap [12] so that bubbles poured from the fountain onto the street) and other local humor, that fountain and sculpture were wrecked in 1998 by a drunk driver. The city council and subsequent "Gazebo" subcommittee decided to build a new structure and a wooden gazebo was constructed a year later. In 2005, a driver crashed into it at night and the gazebo met the same fate as the earlier fountain.[13] After a long discussion over whether to replace the gazebo or landscape the center of the roundabout, a decision was made to rebuild the gazebo/fountain, this time with steel rods extending from the main pillars deep underground. It was completed in the summer of 2006.

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