Sedro-Woolley, Washington: Wikis


Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

City of Sedro-Woolley
—  City  —
Location of Sedro-Woolley in Washington State
Coordinates: 48°30′18″N 122°14′6″W / 48.505°N 122.235°W / 48.505; -122.235
Country United States
State Washington
County Skagit
Incorporated December 19, 1898
 - Type Mayor-council
 - Mayor Mike Anderson
 - City Supervisor Eron Berg
Area [1]
 - Total 3.4 sq mi (8.8 km2)
 - Land 3.4 sq mi (8.8 km2)
 - Water 0.01 sq mi (0 km2)  0.29%
Elevation 56 ft (17 m)
Population (2000)[2]
 - Total 8,658
 - Density 2,547.7/sq mi (983.2/km2)
Time zone PST (UTC-8)
 - Summer (DST) PDT (UTC-7)
ZIP code 98284
Area code(s) 360
FIPS code 53-63210[2]
GNIS feature ID 1512653[3]
Sedro-Woolley, Gateway to the North Cascades

Sedro-Woolley is a city in Skagit County, Washington, United States. According to the Washington State Office of Financial Management, the 2008 population was 10,030. It is included in the Mount Vernon-Anacortes, Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area.



Shops on Metcalf Street, downtown Sedro-Woolley.

Officially incorporated on December 19, 1898, Sedro-Woolley was formed from neighboring rival towns known as Sedro and Woolley in Skagit County, northwestern Washington, 25 miles (40 km) inland from the Puget Sound, 40 miles (64 km) south of the border with Canada and 65 miles (105 km) north of Seattle.[4]

Four British bachelors, led by David Batey, homesteaded the area in 1878, the time logjam obstructions were cleared downriver at the site of Mount Vernon.[5] In 1884–85, Batey built a store and home for the arrival of Cook's family from Santa Barbara, California where he had been mayor for two terms. Cook intended to name his town Bug due to mosquitos, but his wife protested along with a handful of local wives. Cook was already the namesake for a town—Cook's Ferry on the Thompson River in British Columbia to the north. This time he derived a name from Spanish. He knew "cedra" was the word for cedar, so he replaced two letters to make the name unique, winding up with "Sedro".[6]

That old town of Sedro, by the Skagit River on the northern shore, proved susceptible to floods. In 1899, Northern Pacific Railway developer Nelson Bennett began laying track from the town of Fairhaven, 25 miles (40 km) northwest on Bellingham Bay, and real estate developer Norman R. Kelley platted a new town of Sedro on high ground a mile northwest of Cook's site. The Fairhaven and Southern Railroad arrived in Sedro on Christmas Eve 1899, in time for Bennett to receive a performance bonus from the towns at both ends, and a month after Washington became the 42nd state in the Union.[7]

Within months, two more railroads crossed the F&S road bed a half mile north of new Sedro, forming a triangle where 11 trains eventually arrived daily. Railroad developer Philip A. Woolley moved his family from Elgin, Illinois, to Sedro in December 1899 and bought land around the triangle. He built the Skagit River Lumber & Shingle Mill next to where the railroads crossed and he started his namesake company town there that was based on sales of railroad ties to the three rail companies, including the Seattle and Northern Railway (forerunner of the Great Northern Railway) and the Northern Pacific Railroad.

Meanwhile a fourth town rose nearby when the F&S laid rails on a "wye" that led northeast from Sedro about four and a half miles to coal mines. Bennett bought the mines, along with Montana mining financier Charles X. Larrabee, and they soon sold their interests to James J. Hill, owner of the Great Northern. The resulting ore soon turned out to be more suitable for coking coal and a town began there named Cokedale. Cokedale faded in importance when the mine declined and the other towns all merged on December 19, 1898, as Sedro-Woolley.[8]

On May 15, 1922, a large circus elephant known as Tusko escaped from the Al G. Barnes Circus, which was making one of its stops in Sedro-Woolley, at that time. The elephant stomped his way through the little logging town and right into local history, demolishing fences, knocking over laundry lines and trees, telephone poles, and a Model T along the way.

After logging and coal-mining declined, the major employers and industries became the nearby Northern State Hospital (a mental-health facility) [9] and Skagit Steel & Iron Works, which rose from the back room of a local hardware store in 2002 to became a major supplier of implements and parts for logging and railroad customers and which manufactured machines and parts for the war effort in World War II and artillery shells, starting in 1953. By 1990, that company was gone and the hospital was closed but new industry is developing north of town, including robotics.


The City of Sedro-Woolley operates under a Mayor-Council form of government. The elected mayor oversees the operations of the departments of Finance, Police, Fire, Municipal Court, Public Works, Community Development, and Parks & Recreation. Sedro-Woolley Parks & Recreation maintains a large number of public parks and open spaces such as Hammer Heritage Square in downtown Sedro-Woolley. Riverfront Park situated on the Bank of the Skagit River is the signature park. It consists of nearly 60 acres (240,000 m2) and includes picnic shelters, baseball fields, RV park, amphitheater, and an off-leash dog park. Riverfront Park is also the site of the Loggerodeo Carnival and Fireworks during the community's annual 4th of July celebration.

Sedro-Woolley today

In 2006 a new housing development began between the town and the old hospital site, projected to add at least 5,000 to the town's population. [10]


  • Central Elementary (K-6)
  • Evergreen Elementary (K-6)
  • Mary Purcell Elementary (K-6)
  • Samish Elementary (K-6)
  • Lyman Elementary (K-6)
  • Clear Lake Elementary (K-6)
  • Big Lake Elementary (K-6)
  • Cascade Middle School (7-8)
  • State Street High School (9-12) ... "secondary" High School
  • Sedro-Woolley High School (9-12)


Sedro-Woolley is the home of Loggerodeo ( ), staged annually since the mid 1930s close to the Fourth of July is now one of the most famous rural Independence Day celebrations in Washington State and among the oldest, for many of the events date back more than 100 years. It features a carnival, foot-race, log drive, old-time logging show, championship rodeo, children's parade, and the grand parade on the Fourth. The chainsaw-carved log statues that decorate street corners in downtown Sedro-Woolley are from Loggerodeo's past.


Location of Sedro-Woolley, Washington

Sedro-Woolley is located at 48°30′18″N 122°14′6″W / 48.505°N 122.235°W / 48.505; -122.235 (48.504917, -122.234938)[1].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 3.4 square miles (8.8 km²), of which, 3.4 square miles (8.8 km²) of it is land and 0.29% is water.


As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 8,658 people, 3,205 households, and 2,176 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,547.7 people per square mile (983.2/km²). There were 3,334 housing units at an average density of 981.1/sq mi (378.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 91.97% White, 0.25% African American, 1.59% Native American, 0.81% Asian, 0.13% Pacific Islander, 3.25% from other races, and 2.00% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 7.23% of the population.

There were 3,205 households out of which 37.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.8% were married couples living together, 13.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.1% were non-families. 25.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.62 and the average family size was 3.14.

In the city the population was spread out with 28.8% under the age of 18, 9.2% from 18 to 24, 29.3% from 25 to 44, 18.4% from 45 to 64, and 14.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females there were 90.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.8 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $37,914, and the median income for a family was $40,918. Males had a median income of $35,215 versus $23,636 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,517. About 10.7% of families and 11.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.9% of those under age 18 and 16.1% of those age 65 or over.


  1. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files: 2000 and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2005-05-03. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  2. ^ a b c "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  3. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ [2]
  6. ^ [3]
  7. ^ [4]
  8. ^ There are extensive articles about these occurrences and local and Skagit River history at the online Skagit River Journal of History & Folklore (
  9. ^ [5]
  10. ^ [6]

External links



Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address