Blue Thread is traveling to Cannon Beach this Saturday, in the next leg of the Crazy 8s Author Tour. This stop is hosted by Cannon Beach Book Company and will take place at the Cannon Beach Library (131 N. Hemlock St.) on September 22 at 2 p.m. Former Oregon governor Barbara Roberts is part of the tour. Really! Come on over and see for yourself.
Back in 1912, the town that is now Cannon Beach was called Elk Creek, and to understand why you have to go back about another hundred years. In January 1806, William Clark and several others in the Lewis and Clark expedition (including Sacajawea) bartered with members of the Tillamook nation to get oil and 300 pounds of blubber from a whale that had beached near what is now Ecola State Park. The Chinook word for whale, I’m told, is ehkoli, inspiring the names Ecola and Elk Creek. Elk Creek was renamed Cannon Beach in 1922 to honor the cannon found nearby in 1898 (or 1894, depending on your source) from the U.S. Navy schooner Shark. Two more cannons were discovered in 2008, perhaps from the same schooner.
Cannon Beach is best known for 235-foot Haystack Rock and the wild life inhabiting that natural wonder and the tide pools surrounding it. High on my personal list of favorites are tufted puffins and sea stars.
Cannon Beach is part of Clatsop County, which voted for woman suffrage in 1912. The tally: 1,277 in favor; 1,048 against. The women of Blue Thread (give or take a few) would have been pleased.