In Whatcom County, history is not a thing of the past. It is a living treasure to be celebrated. Multiple venues and organizations take joy in preserving numerous aspects of our shared cultural history on both a regional and national level.
Bellingham’s most iconic structure is the Victorian-era, red-brick City Hall Building built for the town of Whatcom in 1892. History exhibits inside the opulent building tell a variety of stories about the region.
Also located in downtown Bellingham, this unique museum moves our history onto the national and international scale as it traces the development of electrical invention from the earliest experiments in Europe, to Benjamin Franklin’s famous discoveries, to genius of Thomas Edison and Nicola Tesla, to the golden age of radio and into the digital world.
On the south side of Bellingham Bay, Fairhaven began as a separate city platted by local character “Dirty Dan Harris” in 1883. The town experienced a boom in 1890-91 when it was speculated to become the western terminus of the new northern railroad. A walking map available at fairhaven.com points out the colorful history of the buildings. Group walking tours with “Dirty Dan” are also available by appointment.
Let’s admit it, Bellingham was once part of the wild west. Although the establishments of the past no longer exist, the Good Time Girls are shining an edgy new light on Bellingham’s past with summer Sin & Gin walking tours for adults over 21.
The oldest documented wooden structure on its original site in the State of Washington is the Pickett House in Bellingham. Preserved by the Daughters of the Pioneers of Washington as an early artifact, the home is open for public tours the second Sunday of each month from 1 – 4 p.m. 910 Bancroft Street, Bellingham, WA 98225
Please note: check with each venue for details on hours
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Also check out these venues throughout the county
- Lynden Pioneer Museum
- Pioneer Park in Ferndale
- Hovander Park in Ferndale
- Semiahmoo Park Maritime Museum