Whatcom County
Whatcom is the most northern county in Washington State. It is the traditional home to a variety of Indigenous Peoples, which include the Lummi, Samish, Nooksack, and Semiahmoo. The Lummi named the area “what-coom”, or “noisy, rumbling water”, in reference to a waterfall near Bellingham Bay, Bellingham.1
In 1775, the Spanish claimed much of what is considered Whatcom County today, but as with much of the Salish Sea region, Whatcom piqued Russian, British, and US trade interests throughout the 19th century.2 The San Juan Islands, as part of Whatcom County, were at the fulcrum of the British-US boundary teeter-totter, which destabilized vigorously after the famous Pig War on San Juan Island.
  • 1. History, Whatcom County.
  • 2. Ibid.
Mentions of this place in the documents