Walla Walla, Washington
|City of Walla Walla|
|Nickname(s): The City So Nice, They Named It Twice|
|• City||12.84 sq mi (33.26 km2)|
|• Land||12.81 sq mi (33.18 km2)|
|• Water||0.03 sq mi (0.08 km2)|
|Elevation||942 ft (287 m)|
|• Estimate (2012)||31,864|
|• Density||2,477.0/sq mi (956.4/km2)|
|Time zone||Pacific (PST) (UTC−8)|
|• Summer (DST)||PDT (UTC−7)|
|GNIS feature ID||1512769|
Walla Walla is the largest city in and the county seat of Walla Walla County, Washington, United States. The population was 31,731 at the 2010 census. Walla Walla is in the southeastern region of Washington, approximately four hours by car from Portland, Oregon, and Seattle, Washington, and thirteen miles from the Oregon border.
Whitman College, Walla Walla Community College, and the Washington State Penitentiary are located in Walla Walla. Walla Walla University is located in nearby College Place, Washington. Baker Boyer Bank, the oldest bank in the state of Washington, was founded in Walla Walla in 1869.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography and climate
- 3 Demographics
- 4 Economy and infrastructure
- 5 Great Places in America: Downtown Walla Walla
- 6 Sports
- 7 Fine and performing arts
- 8 Education
- 9 Sister cities
- 10 Etymology
- 11 Notable people
- 12 In popular culture
- 13 See also
- 14 References
- 15 Further reading
- 16 External links
The establishment of Fort Nez Perce in 1818 by the North West Company to trade with the Walla Walla people and other local Native American groups begins recorded history in this region. At the time, the term "Nez Perce" was used more broadly than today, and included the Walla Walla in its scope in English usage. Fort Nez Perce had its name shift to Fort Walla Walla. It was located significantly west of the present city.
On September 1, 1836, Marcus Whitman arrived with his wife Narcissa Whitman. Here they established the Whitman Mission in an unsuccessful attempt to convert the local Walla Walla tribe to Christianity. Following a disease epidemic, both were killed by the Cayuse who believed that the missionaries were poisoning the native peoples. Whitman College was established in their honor.
The original North West Company and later Hudson's Bay Company Fort Nez Percés fur trading outpost, became a major stopping point for migrants moving west to Oregon Country. The fort has been restored with many of the original buildings preserved. The current Fort Walla Walla contains these buildings, albeit in a different location from the original, as well as a museum about the early settlers' lives.
The origins of Walla Walla at its present site begin with the establishment of Fort Walla Walla by the United States Army here in 1856. The Walla Walla River, where it adjoins the Columbia River, was the starting point for the Mullan Road, constructed between 1859 and 1860 by US Army Lieut. John Mullan, connecting the head of navigation on the Columbia at Walla Walla (i.e., the west coast of the United States) with the head of navigation on the Missouri-Mississippi (that is, the east and gulf coasts of the U.S.) at Fort Benton, Montana.
Walla Walla was incorporated on January 11, 1862. As a result of a gold rush in Idaho, during this decade the city became the largest community in the territory of Washington, at one point slated to be the new state's capital. The former Governor's mansion stands at 925 East Isaacs Avenue. Following this period of rapid growth, agriculture became the city's primary industry.
Geography and climate
Walla Walla is located at (46.065094, −118.330167).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 12.84 square miles (33.26 km2), of which, 12.81 square miles (33.18 km2) is land and 0.03 square miles (0.08 km2) is water.
|Climate data for Walla Walla, Washington (Walla Walla Regional Airport), 1981–2010 normals|
|Record high °F (°C)||70
|Average high °F (°C)||41.6
|Average low °F (°C)||30.6
|Record low °F (°C)||−18
|Precipitation inches (mm)||2.13
|Snowfall inches (cm)||3.1
|Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in)||13.0||10.5||12.3||10.2||9.6||7.3||3.2||2.7||3.9||7.8||13.9||13.2||107.6|
|Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.1 in)||2.5||1.7||0.7||0||0||0||0||0||0||0.1||1.0||3.3||9.3|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||50.5||83.4||173.8||221.7||288.5||326.3||384.5||344.4||268.8||199.2||67.8||40.3||2,449.2|
source 2= weather.com
As of the census of 2010, there were 31,731 people, 11,537 households, and 6,834 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,477.0 inhabitants per square mile (956.4 /km2). There were 12,514 housing units at an average density of 976.9 per square mile (377.2 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 81.6% White, 2.7% African American, 1.3% Native American, 1.4% Asian, 0.3% Pacific Islander, 9.1% from other races, and 3.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 22.0% of the population.
There were 11,537 households of which 30.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.6% were married couples living together, 12.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.7% had a male householder with no wife present, and 40.8% were other forms of households. 33.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.43 and the average family size was 3.10.
The median age in the city was 34.4 years. 22% of residents were under the age of 18; 14.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 26.2% were from 25 to 44; 23.1% were from 45 to 64; and 14% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 51.9% male and 48.1% female.
As of the census of 2000, there were 29,686 people, 10,596 households, and 6,527 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,744.9 people per square mile (1,059.3/km2). There were 11,400 housing units at an average density of 1,054.1 per square mile (406.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 83.79% White, 2.58% African American, 1.05% Native American, 1.24% Asian, 0.23% Pacific Islander, 8.26% from other races, and 2.85% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 17.42% of the population.
There were 10,596 households of which 30.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.4% were married couples living together, 11.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 38.4% were other forms of households. 31.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.44 and the average family size was 3.08.
In the city the population was spread out with 21.8% under the age of 18, 14.2% from 18 to 24, 26.5% from 25 to 44, 17.5% from 45 to 64, and 20.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 108.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 109.1 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $31,855, and the median income for a family was $40,856. Men had a median income of $31,753 versus $23,889 for women. The per capita income for the city was $15,792. About 13.1% of families and 18.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.8% of those under the age of 18 and 10.5% of those aged 65 and older.
Economy and infrastructure
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (December 2008)|
Though wheat is still a big crop, vineyards and wineries have become economically important over the last three decades. In summer 2006, there were over 100 wineries in the greater Walla Walla area. Following the wine boom, the town has developed several top-tier restaurants and hotels. The Marcus Whitman Hotel, one of Washington's finest 1920s hotels, was renovated with original fixtures and furnitures. It is the tallest building in the city, at thirteen storeys.
The Walla Walla Sweet Onion is another crop with a rich tradition. Over a century ago on the Island of Corsica, off the west coast of Italy, a French soldier named Peter Pieri found an Italian sweet onion seed and brought it to the Walla Walla Valley. Impressed by the new onion's winter hardiness, Pieri, and the Italian immigrant farmers who comprised much of Walla Walla's gardening industry, harvested the seed. The sweet onion developed over several generations through the process of selecting onions from each year's crop, targeting sweetness, size, and round shape. The Walla Walla Sweet Onion is designated under federal law as a protected agricultural crop. In 2007 the Walla Walla Sweet Onion became Washington's official state vegetable.
Walla Walla Sweet Onions get their sweetness from low sulfur content, which is half that of an ordinary yellow onion. Walla Walla Sweets are 90 percent water.
The Walla Walla Sweet Onion Festival is held annually in July.
A farmers' market is held from May until October; located on the corner of 4th and Main.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (December 2008)|
Walla Walla has experienced an explosion in its wine industry over the last ten years. Several of the wineries have received top scores from wine publications such as Wine Spectator, The Wine Advocate and Wine and Spirits. L'Ecole 41, Woodward Canyon and Leonetti Cellar were the pioneers starting in the 1970s and 1980s. Although most of the early recognition went to the wines made from Merlot and Cabernet, Syrah is fast becoming a star varietal in this appellation. Today there are over 100 wineries in the Walla Walla Valley and a host of shops catering to the wine industry.
Walla Walla Community College offers an associate's degree (AAAS) in winemaking and grape growing through its 10-year-old Center for Enology and Viticulture, which operates its own commercial winery, College Cellars.
One challenge to growing grapes in Walla Walla Valley is the risk of a killing freeze during the winter. They average one every six or seven years and the penultimate one, in 2004, destroyed about 75% of the wine grape crop in the valley. The valley was again hit with a killing frost in November 2010, leading to a 28% decline in Cabernet Sauvignon production, a 20% decline in red grape production, and an overall decline in production of 11% (red and white varietals).
The wineries generate over $100 million (US) to the valley annually.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (December 2008)|
The largest prison in Washington is the Washington State Penitentiary (WSP) located in Walla Walla, at 1313 North 13th. Originally opened in 1887, it now houses about 2000 offenders. In addition, there are about 1000 staff members. In 2005, the financial benefit to the local economy was estimated to be about $55 million through salaries, medical services, utilities, and local purchases. Washington is a death penalty state, and occasional executions take place at the state pen; the last execution took place on September 10, 2010. Washington is also one of two states to still allow hanging as a choice when sentenced to death (the other being Delaware), there has not been a hanging since May 1994 (the default method of execution was changed to lethal injection in 1996). The penitentiary is undergoing an extensive expansion project that will increase the prison population to 2,500 violent offenders and double the staff size.
Transportation to Walla Walla includes service by air through Walla Walla Regional Airport and highway access primarily from U.S. Route 12. Washington State Department of Transportation is now engaged in a long-term process of widening this road into a four-lane divided highway between Pasco and Walla Walla. The city is also served by Valley Transit and the Grape Line service to Pasco.
Great Places in America: Downtown Walla Walla
In 2012, the American Planning Association (APA) designated the downtown Walla Walla WA area a “Great Places in America: Neighborhood”. When evaluating the application from the City, the APA noted that what the community at large had achieved since 1980 was “nothing short of profound”. This national award recognized the successful ongoing planning efforts started by the Downtown Walla Walla Foundation (1984); formed by grassroots activists with support from residents, businesses, public officials and special interest groups to resuscitate downtown (APA).
This “great neighborhood” is bounded by Highway 12 to the north; Park Street to the east; Birch and Willow streets to the south; and 7th Avenue to the west. The charm of this neighborhood is the iconic architecture that ranges from Beaux- Arts to Art Moderne and nearly every style in-between since 1850. Among the neighborhood's iconic buildings are the Marcus Whitman Hotel (1906), the Interurban Depot Building (1909), the Baker Boyer Bank (1911), and the U.S. Post Office (1914) (APA).
A privately funded $35 million renovation of the Marcus Whitman Hotel in 2001 brought luxury rooms, a new conference center, and 30,000 square feet of office space to downtown Walla Walla. With more than $50 million in private and public funds, city officials embarked on rejuvenating 300 neighborhood buildings; implementing sustainable practices such as regularly planting of street trees for aesthetic value and cooling effect during summer; strengthening and expanding downtown neighborhood's pedestrian orientation and local public space network. Their success even shows in the Arbor Day Foundation designation of Walla Walla as a "Tree City" for the past 18 years. With this revitalized neighborhood, the City has experienced exponential growth of the region's newly established wine industry that now generates $100 million a year for the city and region (APA).
Walla Walla is home of the Walla Walla Sweets, a summer collegiate baseball team that plays in the West Coast League. The league comprises college players and prospects working towards a professional baseball career. Teams are located in British Columbia, Oregon and Washington. Home games are played at Borleske Stadium.
There also is a women's flat track roller derby league called the Walla Walla Sweets Rollergirls, their practices and games are played at the Walla Walla YMCA.
Walla Walla is also the location of a road cycling Stage Race that is held in April. The races are held in the city of Walla Walla and in the nearby town of Waitsburg.
Fine and performing arts
The Walla Walla Valley supports a number of fine and performing arts institutions including the Walla Walla Valley Bands, Walla Walla Symphony, Walla Walla Choral Society and The Little Theater. The area's three colleges—Whitman College, Walla Walla University and Walla Walla Community College as well as its largest public high school—Walla Walla High School—are well known for their outstanding theater and music performances.
The Walla Walla Valley Bands were formed in 1989 and currently boasts a Concert Band of more than 70, two Jazz Ensembles, Sax Quartet and Jazz Trio. The group provides the large group music ensembles for Walla Walla Community College and rehearses there weekly on Tuesday nights.
Walla Walla is served by the Walla Walla School District, with the following schools:
- Berney Elementary
- Blue Ridge Elementary
- Edison Elementary
- Green Park Elementary
- Prospect Point Elementary
- Sharpstein Elementary
- Garrison Middle School
- Pioneer Middle School
- Lincoln High School
- Walla Walla High School
In addition to the school district schools, there are three colleges in Walla Walla:
Proud residents of the town often brag about it as "the town so nice they named it twice". Walla Walla is a Native American name that means "Place of Many Waters". The original name of the town was Steptoeville named after Colonel Edward Steptoe. Walla Walla is rendered Valle-Valliensis in Latin.[dubious ]
- Burl Barer, Broadcaster, Author, and strong social media presence, was a 1965 graduate of Walla Walla High School.
- Lebanese poet, writer, and philosopher Mikha'il Na'ima, author of "The Book of Mirdad", began his writing career in Walla Walla in 1919.
- American counterculture poet and publisher Charles Potts
- American scholar of Islam and author - voted one of the West's most influential Muslim scholars by The Guardian - Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, was born in Walla Walla.
- NFL Quarterback Drew Bledsoe lived in Walla Walla while he was in high school before entering Washington State University in 1990. He was the first pick in the NFL draft in 1993, going to the New England Patriots, where he played until 2001. He later played for the Buffalo Bills and Dallas Cowboys before retiring in 2007.
- The actor Adam West, TV's Batman, grew up in Walla Walla. Then known as Bill Anderson, he attended Walla Walla High School during his freshman and sophomore years before moving with his family to Seattle. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Literature and a minor in Psychology from Whitman College in Walla Walla.
- Softball pitcher Eddie Feigner toured the country with a four-man team, known as "The King and His Court," playing before large crowds and being hailed as "the greatest softball pitcher of all time." He was born in Walla Walla.
- United States Army general and World War II hero Jonathan Wainwright was born in Walla Walla.
- Actor Connor Trinneer, from Star Trek: Enterprise, was born in Walla Walla.
- Silent film actor and studio makeup artist, Bert Hadley, was born in Walla Walla.
- Ryan Crocker, U.S. Ambassador to Iraq (2007–2009), and Pakistan (2004–2007), and who also served as Ambassador to Syria, Kuwait, and Lebanon, graduated from Whitman College in 1971.
- NFL wide receiver Charly Martin was born in Walla Walla in 1984.
- William O. Douglas attended Whitman College in Walla Walla, graduating in 1920. He went on to become the longest-serving justice in the history of the United States Supreme Court.
- Wallace R. Brode, scientist, was born in Walla Walla in 1900.
In popular culture
- The trading card game Magic: The Gathering was created at Whitman College during the 1993 school year.
- American punk rock band The Offspring also wrote a song called "Walla Walla" about the nearby state penitentiary, on Americana, their fifth album.
- Jazz singer Nellie Lutcher had a 78-rpm release in the 1940s entitled "Wish I Was in Walla Walla". The song was written by Sharon A. Pease.
- Hip hop record producer 9th Wonder released a song called "WallaWallaJammin!!!" on his solo album Tutankhamen in 2012.
- Among references in popular culture, Walla Walla is mentioned in many different Warner Bros. cartoons, and the fictional Acme Corporation in the Looney Tunes cartoons:
- In an animated short film featuring the character Daffy Duck, the city is said to be the location for the headquarters of the fictional "Wishy Washy Washing-Machine Company".
- In the 1953 animated short film A Mouse Divided the city is said to be the location for the headquarters of the fictional "Little Giant Vacuum Cleaner Company".
- In the 1955 animated short film Heir-Conditioned the city is said to be the location of the headquarters of the fictional "Hi-Ho Silver Cleaning Company".
- In the Three Stooges story "Cash And Carry", the trio are sold a fake treasure map with an X placed on Walla Walla. Uncertain they are in the right place, Curly reassures them by pointing at the walls. "There's a walla, and there's another walla!"
- The gibberish incantation in David Seville's song "Witch Doctor" includes the words "Walla Walla". Seville has said that while trying to come up with the words, he thought of the name of the town, which his uncle had recently moved to.
- In several episodes of the PBS series Arthur, Walla Walla is mentioned in passing.
- In an episode of Whose Line Is It Anyway?comedian Ryan Stiles (born in Seattle) references Walla Walla during a game of Scenes from a Hat where performers had to give examples of U.S. cities that would never have a song written about them. His song was "We wuv woo Walla Walla, Washington. We wuv woo Walla Walla, Washington."
- Children's author Andrew Clements wrote a book called Double Trouble in Walla Walla.
- Comedian Mike Birbiglia details his experience at a Walla Walla hotel in his one-man show and bestselling book of the same name, Sleepwalk with Me
- In the Simpsons episode Homie the Clown, Krusty lists Walla Walla as a city in America with a funny-sounding name.
- An episode of Deadliest Catch (6/11/13) Captain Scott Campbell Jr visited his father at St. Mary's Hospital in the city.
- "U.S. Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-19.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-19.
- "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-06-01.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- Bly, Laura. "USA Today".
- Alvin M. Josephy, The Nez Perce Indians and the Opening of the Northwest, Abridged Edition (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1965), p. 51
- "National Park Service: Whitman Mission". Nps.gov. 2012-11-19. Retrieved 2013-02-05.
- Josephy, The Nez Perce, p. 367
- "City of Walla Walla, Community Information". Ci.walla-walla.wa.us. Retrieved 2013-02-05.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- "NowData - NOAA Online Weather Data". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved 2012-02-17.
- "NOAA". NOAA.
- "weather.com". http://www.weather.com/weather/wxclimatology/monthly/graph/USWA0476.
- United States Census Bureau. "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved October 11, 2013.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Retrieved October 11, 2013.
- "The Spokesman-Review Apr 6, 2007". News.google.com. 2007-04-05. Retrieved 2013-02-05.
- Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance website - http://wallawallawine.com/
- College Cellars website - http://www.collegecellars.com
- Sean Sullivan's Washington Wine Report - http://www.wawinereport.com/2012/02/cabernet-sauvignon-production-down-28.html
- "Section 630.5, Procedures in Capital Murder". Retrieved 2006-04-27.
- [dead link]
- Beyette, Beverly (December 23, 2004). "Here's to you, Walla Walla". The Seattle Times.
- "Travel - Walla Walla, Washington Introduction : Overview". NWsource. Retrieved 2013-02-05.
- U.S. Department of State, http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/biog/81479.htm
- 404 Error
- "Ross Bagdasarian - Biography". IMDB. Retrieved 2012-05-09.
- MacGibbon, Elma (1904). Leaves of knowledge. Shaw & Borden Co. Available online through the Washington State Library's Classics in Washington History collection Elma MacGibbon's reminiscences of her travels in the United States starting in 1898, which were mainly in Oregon and Washington. Includes chapter "Walla Walla and southeastern Washington."
- Bennett, Robert A. Walla Walla: Portrait of a Western Town, 1804-1899. Walla Walla: Frontier Press Books, c. 1980.
- Gilbert, Frank T. Historic Sketches: Walla Walla, Columbia and Garfield Counties, Washington Territory. Portland, Oregon: A.G. Walling Printing
- American Planning Association (APA)
- City of Walla Walla
- Walla Walla Valley Chamber of Commerce
- Walla Walla Tourism
- City of Walla Walla v. Walla Walla Water Company (U.S. Supreme Court Decision, 1898)
Media related to Walla Walla, Washington at Wikimedia Commons