Foundation 1.0

Washington State: An Introduction

La Connor
La Conner

Welcome to Washington

Before there were skyscrapers, interstates, and cars; before there was electricity-producing-juggernaut Grand Coulee Dam or software giant Microsoft, there was a relatively unexplored area in the upper northwest corner of what is now the United States. This area would eventually be named Washington, after the first President.

Washington is a land of variety, going from sea level at the Pacific Ocean to the highest peak, Mount Rainier at 14,410 feet. Washington has temperate rain forests, high mountains, deserts, and just about everything in between. West of the Cascade Mountain Range, which essentially divide the state in two, people enjoy a milder, wetter climate than the east side, which is more arid, with hotter summers and colder winters.

In terms of population, a much larger percentage of Washington’s 7 million people live on the western side, with Seattle boasting the biggest number at over 600,000. The second largest city, Spokane, resides in the northeast corner where over 200,000 people live.

Washington’s history is an amazing story. It’s one of perseverance, deception, war, courage, and exploration. It’s a history filled with life and death, justice and injustice, of settlement and displacement. By understanding Washington’s history, we can better understand our world today . . .


Geography and History

Geography refers to the physical features of the earth. Things like rivers, mountain ranges, coastlines, and even deserts make up some of the physical features here in Washington. Geography is also the study of people and resources, how we use the land and the industries we’ve come to rely on. Whether you realize it or not, geography has played a major role in the state’s history.

History is the study of past events or a series of events connected to a person or people. Throughout this program, you’ll be learning about how individuals and groups of people, both large and small, helped shape the future of not only our state, but the nation and the world.

Primary and Secondary Sources: When studying history, researchers like to use primary and secondary sources. A primary source is a source that is closest to the original event or is a first-hand account of what happened. A good example of this are the journals of Lewis and Clark. As you'll learn in this program, the American explorers kept detailed notes of their journey. The journals would be considered a primary source.

A secondary source is an analysis of the primary source material. A textbook is a good example of a secondary source. Though secondary sources interpret what happened based upon the primary material, the primary source is still the best form of evidence.

Copyright © 2021 SS Publishing