history

Seattle.gov

Little surprises Knute Berger, writer and local historian, when it comes to Seattle history.

So when he discovered that Seattle had used chain gangs – ball and chain style – into the 1900s, he thought, “Chain gangs? That’s a Southern thing.”

Who Are The Descendants Of Seattle's Early Families?

Oct 19, 2014
KUOW/Joshua McNichols

What are the descendants of Seattle's pioneers up to? KUOW Listener Ben Lee wanted to know.

For KUOW's Local Wonder project, I escaped into Seattle's past in hopes of turning up the present. Turned out that finding Seattle's dead pioneers was the easy part. 

They’re all in one spot: Lakeview Cemetery on Capitol Hill.

Flickr Photo/Jonathan Cohen (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Ross Reynolds marks the 50th Anniversary of the founding of the Friends of the Pike Place Market by speaking with international market consultant David O'Neil. O'Neil says the Friends' efforts to save Pike Place Market turned the tide for public markets all over America.

Public Domain

Americans honor the memory of Reverend Martin Luther King with street, school and place names, a national holiday, and a national monument.

Tavis Smiley appreciates that, but he also knows that many, if not most, Americans can’t quote more than King’s most famous line from his “I Have a Dream” speech. 

Flickr Photo/Teresa Boardman (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Marcie Sillman talks with Steven Johnson, author of "How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made the Modern World," about the technological innovations that led to widespread clean water in America, despite the E. coli in Mercer Island's drinking water this month.

Public Domain

Bill Radke talks with public radio host Tavis Smiley about the forgotten final year in the life of Martin Luther King, Jr.

The old saying goes, "a picture is worth a thousand words." That was the reaction of a U.S. Forest Service researcher when he rediscovered a trove of landscape panoramas called the Osborne Panoramas.

Seattle's Great Northern Tunnel Turns 110

Oct 10, 2014

SEATTLE -- This month the Great Northern Tunnel, which runs through the heart of the city of Seattle, turns 110 years old. Back in the fall of 1904, when it was finished, the mile-long tunnel was the tallest and widest in the United States.

The Great Northern Tunnel took a year and a half to build and cost $1.5 million back in 1904.

That’s about $38 million today.

Flickr Photo/Andrew W. Sieber

Ross Reynolds speaks with Dave Waggoner, who's  leaving as airport director at Paine Field in Everett after 22 years on the job.

Paine Field was a Depression-era project as part of the Works Progress administration. It was believed at the time that it would be a "super airport." Although Sea-Tac has turned into Western Washington's super airport, Paine Field actually generates more economic activity.  

A group in the Boise area is in the midst of fundraising for a new attraction in the Northwest. It'll be called the Northwest Science Museum.

AP Photo/Nati Harnik, File

Most of us heard poetry as babies — nursery rhymes, lullabies, that sort of thing. By the time we reach adulthood, though, poetry is no longer part of our every day lives.

Former U.S. Poet Laureate Ted Kooser says poetry has become something scary. Kooser traces that fear  back to the early 20th century, when modernist poets like T.S. Eliot and Ezra Pound were popular.

A law passed to protect the Union army in the Civil War is one of the key tools federal officials have used to collect tens of billion in corporate fines this year.

During the Civil War, the army relied heavily on private contractors for necessities like uniforms, shoes, and gunpowder. Those contractors often cut corners.

KUOW Photo/Marcie Sillman

Just past the front door of the Burke Natural History Museum, on the University of Washington campus, you’ll find a little alcove. It’s the perfect place to linger on a rainy day.  

Under display cases of sparkling crystals and other mineral specimens, you’ll see sets of slim drawers. Open one, and after you let out a squeak of surprise, you can marvel at the bodies of insects, birds and other small creatures those drawers contain.

Early last month, on a hill outside a tiny, windy village of almond and tobacco farmers in northeastern Greece, veteran archaeologist Katerina Peristeri announced that she and her team had discovered what is believed to be the biggest tomb in Greece.

The "massive, magnificent tomb," Peristeri told reporters, is likely connected to the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedonia, which, in the fourth century B.C. produced Alexander the Great.

Seventy years ago Friday, an 11-month frenzied construction project went hot. It all happened in the remote southeast Washington desert.

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