"Vancouver's Ship Discovery at Restoration Point, May 1792"
Original acrylic on canvas 5' x 30' by Bill Holm © 1966
Lincoln High School Library, Seattle Public Schools

On May 19th, 1792, the ship Discovery, Captain George Vancouver, came to anchor off a point of land opposite the site of present-day Seattle, Washington. Vancouver's voyage to the Northwest Coast was for the purpose of making an accurate survey of the coast and to determine once and for all the existence or non-existence of the fabled Northwest Passage to the Atlantic, and to take over officially from Spain the settlement at Nootka Sound. In the course of the survey his two ships, Discovery and Chatham, became the first European vessels to enter the system of waterways now known as Puget Sound.

The Discovery lay at anchor near this point, named Restoration Point by Vancouver after the anniversary of the restoration of the English monarchy, until May 30, during which time boat parties surveyed the southern reaches of the Sound. The ship was visited by the local Indians who were camped on the point harvesting roots, and Vancouver visited the village as well. The descriptions of this village and its inhabitants in his journal are very detailed and are the earliest written record of the Native peoples of the Seattle area. The later prominent chief, Si'al (Seattle) was a small boy at the time and is thought to have been present in this village during Vancouver's visit.

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