Edmonds Museum 125th Anniversary Essay contest winner: Maura Canney, 1st place

 Frances Anderson and friends after a swim in the Puget Sound. From left: Edith Brackett, Pearl Jones, Anderson and Mildred Dorgan.  (Photo courtesy of Edmonds HIstorical Museum)
Frances Anderson and friends after a swim in the Puget Sound. From left: Edith Brackett, Pearl Jones, Anderson and Mildred Dorgan. (Photo courtesy of Edmonds HIstorical Museum)

Earlier this year, the Edmonds Historical Museum launched an essay contest open to all fourth graders who live and/or attend public or private school in Edmonds, or who are home-schooled at a comparable grade level. This contest was held in conjunction with the City of Edmonds 125th Anniversary, which is being formally celebrated this Tuesday, Aug. 11 in downtown Edmonds.

The topic: What were the three most important events in Edmonds’ history and why were they important? Judges were members of the Edmonds Museum Board.

Leading up to Tuesday’s celebration, My Edmonds News is publishing one winning essay each day. Here is our first-place winner, Maura Canney, 9, from Ms. Rose Short’s class at Holy Rosary Elementary School.

George Brackett: In 1890, George Brackett, was paddling his canoe looking for timber and liked the look of the hillside, When a gust of wind hit his canoe, Brackett landed in a location later called “Brackett’s Landing”.He cleared some land and started creating a town. Other people came and started their own businesses, and soon there was a timber industry. The town was named Edmonds in 1884, but was not incorporated until 1890. In that same year, Brackett sold 455 acres to the Minneapolis Realty and Investment Company. The town was plotted and a wharf was added along the waterfront. George Brackett finding Edmonds was an important event or the city would not be here.

Frances Anderson: Frances Anderson was a community leader, teacher and principal in Edmonds She was in the first graduating class of Edmonds High School in 1911. Frances Anderson went on to the University of Washington. She returned to Edmonds to teach, and in 1924 began as principal of Edmonds Elementary. She was principal there for 25 years. Anderson then returned to teaching for 10 years before retiring in 1959. She was active on many boards, service clubs, and organizations. She played and promoted women’s and men’s sports in Edmonds. She died in 1990, two months before the City of Edmonds celebrated its 100th
anniversary. Frances Anderson moving to Edmonds at the age of 1 was an important event because she was a great leader for our city.

Edmonds Fountain/Gazebo: The traffic circle at 5th and Main came by accident. During World War II, Edmonds held scrap drives to collect materials necessary for the war. A collection point for scrap metal was set up in the middle of the intersection, forcing cars to drive around it. Years later, it became a tradition to put the Edmonds Christmas tree in the middle of the intersection, which also caused cars to go around it. In the 1970’s the city designed the spot as a traffic circle and a spot for public art. In 1974, an artist design a fountain to stay in the location permanently. In 1978 a car ran into the fountain and damaged it beyond repair.The next structure to occupy the roundabout was a wooden gazebo originally built in 1998 as a prop for a made for TV movie. Some people of Edmonds thought the gazebo looked too much like furniture and wanted it removed. In 1999, the gazebo was moved from the traffic circle to Dayton Street. In 2000 a new fountain was built. The “Cedar Dreams Fountain” remains in the location to this day.
I believe this an important event because the Fountain has come to be known as a symbol for Edmonds.

In conclusion, Edmonds is a beautiful place to live. We have a wonderful view of mountains and the water. We have parks, for humans and dogs, a museum, an Art Festival and a Farmers Market during the summer! Edmonds has beautiful places and people that care about their neighbors!

— By Maura Canney

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