Oysterville is a tiny little village on the eastern shores of Willapa Bay in Washington state. First settled by the white man in 1841, the town was established in 1854 and aptly named Oysterville after the flourishing oyster trade. For many generations before, this area was the fishing and camping grounds of the local Chinook people.
During lowtide, this oyster boat sits waiting for the oyster man to come on board for the harvest. To the first white settlers, the oysters that covered the tideflats were looked on as a treasure trove of gold. These delicacies could be shipped south to San Fransico and sold to the restaraunts who then sold each tiny oyster for a dollar a piece!
Beautiful houses were built, some of which still stand today; a church,
and a school
were established along with a newspaper and several saloons. Oysterville was booming and soon had about 500 residents.
Because so many oysters were harvested, by the late 1880's the oyster beds were dwindling, then a much-awaited railroad track ended about four miles away. Without the railroad and the oysters, how would people make a living? Residents quickly begin moving out and even now, 140 years later, Oysterville has only a handful of year round residents. It's a beautiful, serene little village. Come on, take a walk with Riff, Gus and I...
"Myrtle Johnson W----
was the last Indian Princess
Born in Oysterville"
I bet these women could sew a nice quilt then pull on their boots to dig up some oysters and clams. Women after my own heart~
When you're done with your walking tour of Oysterville, make sure you pop over to Oysterville Sea Farms. Sit out on their brand new deck while enjoying a cup of their wonderful chowder and a cold beer or a glass of Willapa Bay wine. It is not at all a hardship to enjoy your chowder or steamer clams with a view like this! If you hit it just right, you may just get to watch an Oysterman at his trade and feel the whisper of times past.
To read more about Oysterville and find some great history on the town and individual dwellings, pop over here. So much great information!
I hope you enjoyed our little tour of Oysterville today and if you're ever in the area you'll stop by and see it for yourself. While you're there, pick up a bushel or two of oysters for great summer grilling. Now, please excuse me while I slurp down this Willapa Bay oyster...