In a cooperative effort with the City of Tumwater, the Olympia Tumwater Foundation’s local history program partnered with Thurston Community Television (TCTV) to produce twenty, three minute videos focusing on Tumwater’s rich history.
Local historian and author, Don Trosper, hosts these short videos featuring music, historic photos, and compelling details about names you may hear and see around Tumwater today, like George Bush, Michael T. Simmons, the Crosby family, and more. Don says, “There is more than enough material to produce many more of these utilizing the rich resources of the foundation archives at the Schmidt House and the City of Tumwater files from Henderson House. It is great fun and will hopefully be helpful to students in history classes, local area residents and visitors from outside our local area.”
Click on the underlined links below to enjoy Don’s folksy interpretation of Tumwater’s past:
The Founders of Tumwater and their trip over the Oregon Trail. Why make such a trip?
The arrival in Oregon and why the founders were forced north into British territory and founded the first permanent American settlement north of the Columbia.
How Tumwater was formed and the first water-powered industry.
The trail to Tumwater and the Bush farm on what is today the Olympia airport. The formation of a separate territory from Oregon.
How gold fever affected one of the first settlers of Tumwater and how he was cured.
Getting used to log cabin life and relations with the native tribes around Tumwater.
The ancestors of Bing Crosby were Tumwater’s early successful businessmen.
The legendary story of how a local preacher coaxed a donation of lumber from a tough Tumwater businessman to build a new church building.
Stories from the big snowstorm of 1852 and a human interest story about the Bush family’s response.
Tumwater area’s first schools. The one-room school houses.
Part one of three episodes about Olympia Brewery history. How it all began here in Tumwater.
Part two of three episodes about the Olympia Brewery history. The Capital Brewing Company begins and the impact on the area and the amazing growth.
Part three of three episodes about the Olympia Brewery history. Oly Beer comes back after prohibition.
Stories from the first minutes of the official town of Tumwater and our first “mayor” Nelson Barnes.
Stories from one of the oldest churches in the State right here in Tumwater. The circuit-riding preachers and how they adjusted to our northwest culture.
A time travel journey tracing the development of Tumwater’s Southgate area.
What about the Schmidt brothers before they arrived here in Tumwater in 1896?
Take a trip on the electric street car line from downtown Olympia to the end of the line in Tumwater.
It’s not just the Deschutes River that has run through Tumwater. There have been many kinds of rivers running through it.
What was life like in early Tumwater? Stories from a child’s perspective and from the adults too.