Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Day 20 – Long Beach Washington - July 19, 2011


Long Beach began when Henry Harrison Tinker bought a land claim from Charles E. Reed in 1880. He platted the town and called it "Tinkerville." Long Beach was officially incorporated on January 18, 1922. From 1889 to 1930, a narrow gauge railroad called the Ilwaco Railway and Navigation Company ran up the whole peninsula. A resort village from the start, Long Beach enjoyed summertime travelers on the narrow gauge “Clamshell Railroad” that ran up the length of the peninsula from 1889 to 1930.

For 41 years narrow-gauge railroad made thousands of journeys from one end of this peninsula to the other.  The passengers were local residents going to “town” to shop, summer visitors coming to enjoy a vacation by the sea, and even students traveling to high school in Ilwaco.  Freight hauling was important too, and the bounty of farm, forest, beach and bay started its trip to distant markets on the little railroad.

Like many other small railroads across the country, the Clamshell Railroad struggled to survive as automobiles and trucking lines became more dominant forms of transportation.  The old tracks were pulled up and sold long ago but train buffs, history fans and curious visitors all enjoy retracing the route of the vintage train and recapturing a little piece of our past.

The Peninsula is also known for its cranberry industry. Cranberry farming in the SW corner of Washington State has a more than 100-year history.

Cranberry Bog


Driving on the beaches of the Peninsula is a tradition dating back to the early days of the automobile. For years, beachgoers have enjoyed a leisurely drive on the wide, hard-packed sands.


Long Beach Washington

North of Long Beach, in the mid-1800s, the village of Oysterville began to prosper after Chief Nahcati introduced the town’s founders, R.H. Espy and I.A. Clark, to oysters. The rich oyster beds of Willapa Bay were soon responsible for Oysterville’s growing riches, as the town became a major competitor with other oyster companies.

Oyster Beds



We stopped for lunch in Oysterville, Raija had clam chowder and I had oysters on the half shell.

To the Beach


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