Sunday, 7 April 2013

474/5/6 – Whidbey Island and Washington State

Cards no 474/5/6 - Arianne 
Washington State 
Country Card Sent From: USA 
Place that Card Sender Lives: Whidbey Island, Washington 
Date Received: 4th April 2013 
Distance Travelled: 4,589 miles 
Time Taken: ? days 

 Click to enlarge

Whidbey Island (historical spelling Whidby) is the largest of nine islands located in Island County, Washington, in the United States. Whidbey is about 30 miles (48 km) north of Seattle, and lies between the Olympic Peninsula and the I-5 corridor of western Washington. The island forms the northern boundary of Puget Sound. It is home to Naval Air Station Whidbey Island. Whidbey Island is also home to 58,211 residents (according to the 2000 census), also known as Whidbey Islanders. An estimated 29,000 of Whidbey Islanders live in rural locations.

Whidbey Island is the 40th largest island in the United States. It is ranked as the fourth longest and fourth largest island in the contiguous United States, behind Padre Island, Texas (the world's longest barrier island); Long Island (a fact disputed by residents); and Isle Royale, Michigan. In the state of Washington, it is the largest island, followed by Orcas Island.

 Whidbey Island was once inhabited by members of the Lower Skagit, Swinomish, Suquamish, Snohomish and other Native American tribes. The first known European sighting of Whidbey Island was during the 1790 Spanish expedition of Manuel Quimper and Gonzalo López de Haro on the Princesa Real. The island was fully explored in 1792 by Captain George Vancou-ver. In May of that year, Royal Navy officers and members of Vancouver's expedition, Joseph Whidbey and Peter Puget, began to map and explore the areas of what would later be named Puget Sound. After Whidbey circumnavigated the island in June 1792, Vancouver named the island in his honour.

These three cards  (and the next one) came with a letter in this wonderful home-made envelope from Arianne.

And the stamps were interesting too:-

Carl Christian Schurz (1829 – 1906) was a German revolutionary, American statesman and reformer, U.S. Minister to Spain, Union Army General in the American Civil War, U. S. Sena-tor, and Secretary of the Interior. He was also an accomplished journalist, newspaper editor and orator, who in 1869 became the first German-born American elected to the United States Senate.

The Smithsonian Institution was established with funds from James Smithson (1765-1829), a British scientist who left his estate to the United States to found “at Washington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge.” Smithson, the illegitimate child of a wealthy Englishman, had traveled much during his life, but had never once set foot on American soil. Smithson never wrote about or discussed his bequest with friends or colleagues, so we are left to speculate on the ideals and motivations of a gift that has had such significant impact on the arts, humanities, and sciences in the United States. It was some time after his death that the Institution was fgounded - by Act of Congress in 1846. This stamp, issued in 1996, celebrated the 150th anniversary. The Smithsonian is the world's largest museum and research complex, with 19 museums, 9 research centers and more than 140 affiliate museums around the world.

Alta California (English: Upper California) was a province and territory in the Viceroyalty of New Spain and later a territory and department in independent Mexico. The territory was created in 1769 out of the northern part of the former province of Las Californias, and con-sisted of the modern American states of California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, western Colorado and south western Wyoming. The territory passed to American control after the Mexican–American War and ceased to exist with the creation of the State of California in 1850.

Bella Coola is a community of approximately 600 at the western extremity of the Bella Coola Valley. The Nuxalk people were present in the Bella Coola valley prior to any formal written history of the area. This is confirmed both by oral history that continues unbroken to present day, and by written history of some of the first European explorers of the area.

Gilbert Rohde (1894–1944), whose career as a furniture and industrial designer helped to de-fine American modernism during its first phase from the late 1920s to World War II, is best known today for inaugurating modern design at Herman Miller Inc.

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