Headlines Help to Tell the Story of Deadman's Point
 
 
The removal of Deadman's Point began in 1890.   The Bellingham Herald newspaper began in 1904 and would report on the latest progress of the Point's removal for the next 15 years.



 
Bodies Found At Dead Man’s Point    
April 14, 1904

Coffin Uncovered by Men Engaged in Washing Away the Bluff -- Many Legends of the Place
Coffin's Washed Down
Many Legends Current


Crew of graders began work today removing dirt
April 25, 1905

…..There has been quite a hill left at this point after earlier grading work was abandoned
and it will take some time to remove the last of the earth


Big Hill Is Being Torn Down   
September 16 1904

Nature’s Monument is Giving Way to Progress
 
The big hill on Commercial Point is succumbing to the touch of the hand of progress and is being torn down as fast as hydraulic pressure and steam force can do its work.  Once a barrier to the waterfront ofsouth side of the city it will soon be as level as a house floor.   .....There is a spirit of activity at that end of the bay.  There is a rattling of dry bones, as it were, and nature's monument, an irregular mix of soil, sand gravel and rock.  The hum of the wheels of industry will take the place of the sound of the waves swishing against the shore.



Big Hill Will Be Leveled   
April 8, 1905
Orders Give to Raze Commercial Point
Eleven Shovels Will Prepare Ground for Side Track at Foot of Harris Street
May Mean Building of New Depot
 
 
 
 
 
Despite the optimism in 1905, this photo taken in 1909  shows that Dead Man's Point is still there!
    


 

Titanic Undertaking is Contemplated by Captains of Industry  
January 15, 1911
 

R.A. Welsh of the Bellingham Canning Company, and E.B. Deming, of the Pacific American Fisheries, will Raze Hill on Recently Aquired Lands at Commercial Point, Erect Great Bulkheading and Construct Deep Sea Wharf, While New Factory Will Be Constructed by Mr. Welsh at Cost of Not Less than $15,000.
 
Cost of Leveling Land Will Be Enormous but Will Be Justified by Enhanced Value of Real Estate -- Work Will Be Done by Means of Steam Shovels and Will probably Start Next Summer -- Attempt is Being Made now to Reach Agreement with Webster Estate
 
What promises to be one of the greatest commercial undertakings ever brought to a head in the City of Bellingham.  Total area of the land involved is 12 acres.  
 

 

Dead Man’s Point Will Be Razed  
April 19, 1912


Dead Man’s Point is Shoveled Away  
Sept 24 1912

The big steam shovel owned by the Great Northern Railroad Company to be used in the clearing of Commercial Point on the South Side, has now arrived and will commence the removal of about 30,000 tons of earth today.  Flat cars will be used to carry the earth removed to the fill being made by the railway woman along the North Bellingham waterfront, between the foot of Broadway and the month of the Squalicum creek.  
 

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Historic Point to be Severed by PAF  
May 17 1916   

11,000 cubic yards of earth will be taken from Commercial Point to Make Fill at New Shipyard Site

A cut through the hill, forty-two feet deep, sixty-two feet in width at the bottom is to be made so that Harris avenue can be extended to the shipyard site.  A large number of workmen and teams were placed at work transferring the earth today..........Commercial Point, formerly known as Dead Man's Point was a burying ground for both Indians and whites when Bellingham was young.  The cemetery was abandoned with the establishment of Bay View cemetery.  Some years ago the Pacific American Fisheries removed a portion of the hilltop make room for a warehouse.  




Relic of Ancient Days Found by P.A.F Men  
August  8, 1916

Yesterday afternoon a heap of bones, thought to be those of a white man, were unearthedat the site of the new Pacific American shipyard on what was known in the past as Dead man’s Point.”….


Deadman’s POINT IS NOW NOTHING BUT A MEMORY    
July 25, 1919

Deadman’s Point, ancient Indian burial groundis now but a memory  It has been washed and dumped into the sea.

the last shovelful of earth from the point was scooped up by the Great Northern’s steam shovel Wednesday, thus completing a demolition that started about 1890 when a cut was made at the point for Harris Avenue.  Altogether, about 200,000 cubic yards of earth have been removed from the point…..

The second attack on Deadman’s Point was made in 1901 by the Great Northern when it put through its right of way.  Subsequently onslaughts were made by the Pacific American Fisheries, the Bellingham Canning Company and the Fairhaven Land Company.  The latter concern washed a big portion into the sea to make room for George F. Hackett’s Cold Storage plant….

From time t time during the excavations Indian skulls and skeltons were unearthed.  Early this week an Indian skull that was almost flat from the forehead back was found.

 Photo Whatcom Museum Galen Biery Collection

LOOKING BACK
Bellingham Herald
June 1, 1980
 
 A steam shovel moves the last of the hill at Deadman's Point at the west end of Harris avenue on Fairhaven's waterfront in this photo taken about 1918.  At one time a cemetery was located here but the 40 graves were moved in 1889 to Bayview Cemetery.  The site has been used mostly as a marine shipyard by the Old Pacific American Fisheries and now is occupied by the Weldit Corp.  The area has been known by a variety of names, including Poe's Point, Deadman's Point Commercial Point and now is Post Point.    

04/27/21
 











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