The west shore. (Portland, Or.) 1875-1891, March 01, 1884, Image 16

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f-1 - " i H il.r; ; ' -; -1 -i-: l! ' I'-t'tiM r?0B l ( Jlls,
A COM A ia no longer a " City of the Future," an " Em
lryo City," "The Coininc MetroDolis." or ...
4 f " r WH1V1 UL
llm nmnv titlua I... i. i
5jlt dwignnta it, but is now an actual, thrivin
( wal ami manufacturing center, and is still advancing
v with even greater abides than the moat HAn5n
S wnture.1 U pmlicl It has ceased to be tha
VjfXrfrjZ tjrmww of an incompleted railroad, and has become
' LC.V,4-:vM Ue actual terminus of a great overland trunk line th.
'; direct avenue of communication between Poo
V I P Watc of 016 racifio Northwest Wher-
,,fi!ll ." v vr Ilia V.4l. T ! t .i ...
Si 9 --iui,inc aiiroal is known Tacoma is
- .or,,, RIUI lue ranje of Ule one hftg
iMiuml ud in Hint iJ il.o nti... .
iniHuir.i.u . 7 v mey nave become a
.i h : i faarir a,,d ? racific-
ad f., ft. 5 Z H."1? ""-
what the city haa been wl,t Jt , " 8Ute M 8cmctly
-Hainty, it i. deaUn.Hj becmT
Tacoma lies at the head of Commencemeit Bay, the extreme southeastern harbor of
Puget Sound, that great inland sea, which lias been so appropriately designated as the
" Mediterranean of the Pacific." The site is both salubrious and beautiful It rises by
successive terraces to a height of 300 feet alwve the water's edge, rendering the drain
age of its surface by natural means complete and a thorough system of sewerage easy
and practicable. The prospect from these Hgher benches embraces a wide and varied
landscape, including the beautiful, timber-fringed shores of Puget Sound, the fertile
valley of the Puyallup, the foothills and summit ridges of the Cascade Mountains, and
towering above all in its grandeur the white peak and snowy sides of Mount Tacoma,
Beautiful and enticing as its site is from ta artistic standpoint, other considerations
than those of a love of Nature moved the far-seeing men who laid here the foundation
of a great city.
That the terminal point of the Northern Pacific on Puget Sound was destined to
become a city of great commercial importance was evident even to the most unreflective
mbd, and therefore the exact location of thi point became early in the history of the
road a matter of much importance. For Itis reason the Board of Directors of the
railroad appointed two commissioners to mate a thorough examination of the harbors
of Puget Sound, with a view to selecting thepne offering the most advantages for that
purpose. These gentlemen-R W. Bice,' the Vice-President, and Captain J. G
Ainsworth, the Managing Director for the Pacific Coast made a most careful examin
ation, aided by comprehensive surveys of able engineers, and fixed upon the shore of
Commencement Bay as possessing more fully than any other locality the features
desirable for the terminal city of the road. In accordance with this report the Board
of Directors passed a resolution on the 10th of September, 1873, fixing the city of
Tacoma as the great Western terminus of the Northern Pacific Railroad. v
The Tacoma Land Company wag incorporated with a capital stock of $1,000,000,
divided into 20,000 shares, of which 51 per cent were held by the Northern Paciflo
Railroad Company and 49 per cent by individual preferred stockholders of that com
pany. This organization acquired from the railroad company 3,000 acres of land, which
the latter had purchased immediately upon deciding upon the location; also 13,000
acres of the odd-numbered or railroad sections within a radius of six miles, paying
for the entire tract 1250,000. Upon this property, and a short diatanoe south of the
original location at Tacoma, the company cleared a tract about a mile square and laid
out a city which was christened " New Tacoma," where the railroad company immedi
ately erected a large building for its headquarters.
The Pacific Division, extending from the Columbia River to the Terminal City,
was nearly completed when the failure of Jay Cooke k Co. blocked the progress of