OUR HISTORY





The Grow Family Homestead
still stands today as the
Harbour Public House



Ambrose Grow
Ambrose Grow and his wife, Amanda, and their family came to Eagle Harbor in 1881. He was a Civil War veteran and came because of the descriptive letters he had read in the New York and Kansas papers telling of the virtues of Bainbridge Island. Selling his large farm in Manhattan, Kansas, he homesteaded 160 acres here along the waterfront. In addition to being a charter member of the Eagle Harbor Congregational Church and the Madrone Schools, he was a prolific correspondent to the happenings in Eagle Harbor and environs.

The Harbour Public House was originally the home of Amanda and Ambrose Grow.
 
Their house was built in 1881 with further additions over the next few years.

The Pub's construction started in 1990 and took almost two years to complete. The house was in very poor condition; the original foundation was cedar rounds and, over the years, much settlement and decay had occurred. The original construction had been sound but rudimentary, the only significant aspect being the inside walls which were of clear tongue-and-groove Douglas Fir from first-growth Bainbridge Island trees milled at the Port Blakely Lumber Mill (then the largest lumber mill in the world).

The rear single-story portion of the house was so severely decayed that it had to be completely rebuilt. The front two-story portion, however, was jacked up and, after a lower basement floor and walls had been constructed, was re lowered and remodeled to retain the original upstairs interior but with the original upstairs floor removed and the load-bearing walls replaced with new heavy timber beams and posts.

The interior wood which was not retained was refinished and reused as wainscoting throughout the building or re-milled as trim and cabinets. The booth tables and mantelpiece are made from the original upstairs floor joists.

The Harbour Public House opened on December 27th, 1991 as the first non-smoking tavern in the Seattle area.

 

CANNERY COVE is the site of the Winslow Berry Growers Association’s strawberry cannery pier (1923 - 1941). It is located at 240 Weaver Road south of Wyatt Way, or on foot by walking to the west end of Winslow Way and following the trail along the water to Shepard Way and the park entrance - just four blocks west from downtown Winslow.

Pioneered by farmers primarily of Japanese ancestry, the Island’s strawberry industry engaged a broad and diverse population. Berries were shipped from here as early as 1909 by Sakakichi Sumiyoshi and strawberry farmers who followed his lead. The cannery operated in cooperation with the R. D. Bodle Company who, in 1937, was the largest berry packer in the country. Strawberries were packed with sugar in 55-gallon wooden barrels made in the cannery by Al and Jim Cooper. Five hundred such barrels were shipped daily in the peak of the season by Capt. Neils Christensen and his son, Capt. J. Holger Christensen by barge with their motor vessels LA BLANCA and HANNAH C. In 1940, 200 cannery workers processed 2,000,000 lbs of berries that were shipped to Seattle and across the U. S. The uprooting of Americans of Japanese ancestry and their forced evacuation from the west coast brought an end to cannery berry packing.

Capt. Alvin & Mary Oliver, from Bristol, ME, had a landing, store, boat yard and farm here (1890- 1912) that employed the Sumiyoshi family. Later Capt. Benjamin T. Tilton and his wife Harriette from Martha’s Vineyard, MA, purchased Oliver’s properties. A retired Arctic whaler, Capt. Tilton was a member of the prestigious Explorer’s Club of NYC, nominated for membership by famed Arctic explorer, Vilhjalmur Stefansson. Tilton and many others helped the berry industry grow through a period of discriminatory State Alien Land Laws and the Great Depression.

After WW II and for 22 years, concrete plants operated here by Ed & Angela Weaver (1948-1960), Pat & Roy Egaas (1961-1962) and Joe Park Sr. & Jr. (1963-1970). Parks manufactured prestressed concrete deck panels for Port of Seattle’s Terminal 18 at Harbor Island, Edgewater Inn and elsewhere. Inside the cannery, they also built Port of Kingston’s first public marina.

Cannery Cove’s history reaches across our region, state, nation, Canada and Japan. It played a significant role in area settlement; development; and in maritime, agricultural, food processing and industrial history - a rich cultural fabric of many peoples and individuals significant to our history.

The cannery was destroyed by fire in 1997. The concrete remains of the warehouse and piers are as indelible on the cove landscape as the history of the strawberry industry and cove is on the soul of Bainbridge Island. Story Courtesy of the Bainbridge Island Historical Society & the Friends of Cannery Cove


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The Harbour Public House • 231 Parfitt Way S.W. • Bainbridge Island, WA 98110 • Phone: 206- 842- 0969 • Email: click here