Stanwood, Washington

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Stanwood, Washington
Lushootseed: Sŭl-gwähs'[1]
Looking west down Main Street
Looking west down Main Street
Location of Stanwood, Washington
Location of Stanwood, Washington
Coordinates: 48°14′32″N 122°21′4″W / 48.24222°N 122.35111°W / 48.24222; -122.35111Coordinates: 48°14′32″N 122°21′4″W / 48.24222°N 122.35111°W / 48.24222; -122.35111
Country United States
State Washington
County Snohomish
Incorporated October 19, 1903
 • Type Mayor–council
 • Mayor Leonard Kelley
 • Total 2.84 sq mi (7.36 km2)
 • Land 2.82 sq mi (7.30 km2)
 • Water 0.02 sq mi (0.05 km2)
Elevation 7 ft (2 m)
Population (2010)[3]
 • Total 6,231
 • Estimate (2015)[4] 6,779
 • Density 2,209.6/sq mi (853.1/km2)
Time zone Pacific (PST) (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST) PDT (UTC-7)
ZIP code 98292
Area code 360
FIPS code 53-67455
GNIS feature ID 1512690[5]
Former 1903 "People's Union" cooperative building[6] that evolved into a small Shurfine grocery and now contains retail shops and restaurants on 271st Ave NW, Stanwood.

Stanwood is a city in Snohomish County, Washington, United States. The city is located 50 miles (80 km) north of Seattle, at the mouth of the Stillaguamish River. Its population was 6,231 at the 2010 census.[7]


Prior to European exploration and settlement in the 19th century, the Puget Sound region was inhabited by indigenous Coast Salish peoples. The modern-day site of downtown Stanwood was home to a Stillaguamish village named Sŭl-gwähs',[1] led by chief Zis-aba, with an estimated 250 people and three large potlatch houses.[8] George O. and G. L. Wilson were led on a canoe expedition up the Stillaguamish River by Samuel Hancock in 1851, becoming the first European Americans to explore the river.[9]

Stanwood was first settled in 1866 by Robert Fulton and was initially named "Centerville". Stanwood's Post Office was established as Centerville in 1870, and the name was changed to Stanwood in 1877 by D.O. Pearson after his wife's maiden name.[10][11] Stanwood was officially incorporated on October 19, 1903,[12] and grew at the mouth of the Stillaguamish River one mile west of the 1891 Seattle-Montana Great Northern Railway tracks. East Stanwood (along the railroad tracks) was platted in 1906 and incorporated in 1922. The two towns consolidated in 1960.

Historic buildings[edit]

Two buildings in Stanwood are on the National Register of Historic Places:


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city of Stanwood has a total area of 2.84 square miles (7.36 km2), of which 2.82 square miles (7.30 km2) is land and 0.02 square miles (0.05 km2) is water.[2] The city is at the northwestern corner of Snohomish County,[12] and is considered part of the Seattle metropolitan area.[13][14] It is approximately 50 miles (80 km) north of Seattle,[15] and 13 miles (21 km) west of Arlington, the nearest neighboring city.[16]

Stanwood is located at the mouth of the Stillaguamish River, where it flows into Port Susan, an arm of the Puget Sound, and Skagit Bay, the mouth of the Skagit River.[12] To the west is Davis Slough, which separates Stanwood from Camano Island,[17] and forms the border between Snohomish and Island counties.[18] Elevations in Stanwood range from 2 feet (0.61 m) above sea level near the Stillaguamish River to 190 feet (58 m) above sea level in the northeastern hills.[16] The city is home to five creeks and drainage basins that flow into the Stillaguamish River and Puget Sound: Church Creek, Douglas Creek, Irvine Slough, the Skagit River, and the Stillaguamish River.[19]:2-14

Stanwood's city limits are generally defined to the south by the Stillaguamish River; to the west by 104th Drive Northwest; to the north by 276th Street Northwest and 290th Street Northwest; and to the east by 68th Avenue Northwest.[20] The urban growth area of Stanwood consists of an additional 425 acres (172 ha) outside city limits, including the unincorporated area of Northwest Stanwood.[19]:2-2

The Stanwood area was formed during the Pleistocene glaciation and was further shaped through the rise and fall of sea level and sedimentary deposits from the Skagit and Stillaguamish rivers.[21]:NF-9 Much of downtown Stanwood is located in a 100-year flood zone and is at risk of flooding from the Skagit River, as well as the Stillaguamish River.[16][22]


Stanwood contracts with the Snohomish County Sheriff's Office for police services. Deputies assigned to Stanwood drive patrol cars marked with the city logo. There are currently 6 patrol deputies, one school resource officer, one detective, three sergeants, and one chief assigned full-time to the city.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1910 544
1920 704 29.4%
1930 715 1.6%
1940 600 −16.1%
1950 710 18.3%
1960 646 −9.0%
1970 1,347 108.5%
1980 1,646 22.2%
1990 1,961 19.1%
2000 3,923 100.1%
2010 6,231 58.8%
Est. 2016 7,009 [23] 12.5%
U.S. Decennial Census[24]
2015 Estimate[4]

2010 census[edit]

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 6,231 people, 2,388 households, and 1,541 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,209.6 inhabitants per square mile (853.1/km2). There were 2,584 housing units at an average density of 916.3 per square mile (353.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 89.7% White, 1.0% African American, 0.8% Native American, 1.7% Asian, 0.3% Pacific Islander, 2.6% from other races, and 3.9% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 7.0% of the population.

There were 2,388 households of which 38.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.7% were married couples living together, 12.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.7% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.5% were non-families. 29.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.55 and the average family size was 3.18.

The median age in the city was 35.9 years. 28.1% of residents were under the age of 18; 8% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 27.2% were from 25 to 44; 21.3% were from 45 to 64; and 15.3% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.3% male and 52.7% female.

2000 census[edit]

As of the census of 2000, there were 3,923 people, 1,402 households, and 957 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,995.4 people per square mile (768.9/km2). There were 1,508 housing units at an average density of 767.0 per square mile (295.6/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 91.56% White, 0.59% African American, 0.94% Native American, 1.10% Asian, 0.23% Pacific Islander, 2.52% from other races, and 3.06% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.97% of the population.

There were 1,402 households out of which 42.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.3% were married couples living together, 12.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.7% were non-families. 26.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.65 and the average family size was 3.22.

Sign for the Viking Restaurant (and Fjord Room), Viking Village shopping center, reflects Stanwood's Scandinavian heritage.

In the city, the age distribution of the population shows 31.5% under the age of 18, 6.6% from 18 to 24, 30.6% from 25 to 44, 14.5% from 45 to 64, and 16.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 89.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 81.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $44,512, and the median income for a family was $52,996. Males had a median income of $40,457 versus $26,738 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,775. About 9.0% of families and 12.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.9% of those under age 18 and 23.4% of those age 65 or over.


Stanwood is located on State Route 532, an east–west highway connecting Camano Island to Interstate 5 east of Stanwood.[25] The city is also served by two other major highways: Pioneer Highway, historically part of State Route 530 and the Pacific Highway (U.S. Route 99),[26][27] which continues north to Conway and east towards Arlington;[28] and Marine Drive, which continues south to Warm Beach, the Tulalip Indian Reservation, and Marysville.[29]:7[30]

Public transportation in Stanwood is provided by Community Transit and Island Transit, the transit authorities of Snohomish and Island counties, respectively. Community Transit runs all-day bus service from Stanwood to Warm Beach, North Lakewood, and Smokey Point. During peak hours, it also runs commuter express service to the Boeing Everett Factory and Downtown Seattle from two park and rides in the Stanwood area.[31][32] Island Transit provides service to Camano Island on two routes, as well as commuter service to Mount Vernon and Everett.[29]:20–21

Stanwood is served by a north–south railroad owned by BNSF Railway, which operates freight and passenger rail service to the city. Amtrak's Cascades provides daily passenger rail service at Stanwood station in downtown Stanwood, continuing south to Seattle and north to Vancouver, British Columbia.[29]:19 The train station opened on November 21, 2009, restoring passenger rail service that had been discontinued in 1971.[33]


Public schools in Stanwood are operated by the Stanwood-Camano School District, which covers the city and neighboring communities, including Camano Island, Lake Ketchum, and Warm Beach.[34] The district had an enrollment of approximately 4,554 students in 2014 and has eleven total schools, including one high school, two middle schools, and four elementary schools located in Stanwood.[35][36]

Stanwood's nearest post-secondary education institutions are Skagit Valley College, located in Mount Vernon, and Everett Community College, located in northern Everett.[37]

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ a b Hunt, Herbert; Kaylor, Floyd C. (1917). Washington, West of the Cascades: Historical and Descriptive. Chicago: S. J. Clarke Publishing Company. pp. 395–398, 534. OCLC 10086413. Retrieved April 24, 2017 – via Google Books. 
  2. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-19. 
  3. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-19. 
  4. ^ a b "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved June 25, 2016. 
  5. ^ "Stanwood, Washington". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved April 24, 2017. 
  6. ^ Prasse, Karen. River, Rail, & Road A Pictorial History of Stanwood & East Stanwood, Washington. Stanwood, Wash: Stanwood Area Historical Society, 2003.
  7. ^ "2010 City Population and Housing Occupancy Status". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved December 9, 2012. 
  8. ^ Hollenbeck, Jan L.; Moss, Madonna (1987). A Cultural Resource Overview: Prehistory, Ethnography and History: Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. United States Forest Service. p. 153. OCLC 892024380. Retrieved March 15, 2018 – via HathiTrust. 
  9. ^ McDonald, Lucile (December 8, 1957). "Two of Stillaguamish River's 3 Mouths Threatened by Siltation". The Seattle Times. p. 5. 
  10. ^ Majors, Harry M. (1975). Exploring Washington. Van Winkle Publishing Co. p. 18. ISBN 978-0-918664-00-6. 
  11. ^ Meany, Edmond S. (1923). Origin of Washington geographic names. Seattle: University of Washington Press. p. 287. 
  12. ^ a b c Snohomish County Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan Update, Volume 2: Planning Partner Annexes (Report). Snohomish County. September 2015. p. 12-1. Retrieved April 24, 2017. 
  13. ^ Snohomish County Urban Growth Areas and Incorporated Cities (PDF) (Map). Snohomish County. March 2013. Retrieved March 11, 2018. 
  14. ^ "Select Stanwood". City of Stanwood. Retrieved July 1, 2017. 
  15. ^ "Community Profiles: Stanwood" (PDF). Northwest Fisheries Science Center. Retrieved April 24, 2017. 
  16. ^ a b c Snohomish County, Washington Flood Insurance Study (Report). Snohomish County. 2005. pp. 16–17. Retrieved July 1, 2017. 
  17. ^ Ness, Arnold O.; Richins, C. G.; Roberts, Ray Carlton (August 1956). Soil Survey of Island County, Washington (Report). United States Department of Agriculture Soil Conservation Service. p. 26. OCLC 965548334. Retrieved July 1, 2017 – via Google Books. 
  18. ^ "RCW 36.04.310: Snohomish county". Revised Code of Washington. Washington State Legislature. Retrieved July 1, 2017. 
  19. ^ a b "Chapter 2: Planning Area Stormwater Characteristics" (PDF). City of Stanwood Stormwater Comprehensive Plan Appendix C (Report). City of Stanwood. 2014. Retrieved July 1, 2017. 
  20. ^ Stanwood Streets and Parcels (PDF) (Map). City of Stanwood. June 2016. Retrieved July 1, 2017. 
  21. ^ "City of Stanwood Comprehensive Plan". City of Stanwood. June 2015. Retrieved July 1, 2017. 
  22. ^ Bray, Kari (October 18, 2014). "Worried about flood risks, Stanwood is heading for the hills". The Everett Herald. Retrieved July 1, 2017. 
  23. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017. 
  24. ^ United States Census Bureau. "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved July 26, 2013. 
  25. ^ Washington State Highways, 2014–2015 (PDF) (Map). Washington State Department of Transportation. 2014. § C3. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 
  26. ^ "Portion of 530 will be called Pioneer Highway". The Seattle Times. June 4, 1992. p. E2. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 
  27. ^ Highway Map, State of Washington (Map). 1:1,360,009. Thomas Brothers. 1938. Retrieved July 2, 2017 – via David Rumsey Historical Map Collection. 
  28. ^ "The Pacific Highway". Western Motor. Vol. IX no. 2. Seattle: Western Motor Car. July 1917. p. 22. OCLC 17372812. Retrieved July 2, 2017 – via Google Books. 
  29. ^ a b c City of Stanwood Transportation Plan (PDF) (Report). City of Stanwood. March 2015. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 
  30. ^ Marine Drive Corridor Improvements Final Environmental Impact Statement (Report). Snohomish County Department of Public Works. October 1983. p. 5. OCLC 746938531. Retrieved July 2, 2017 – via Google Books. 
  31. ^ Community Transit Bus Plus: Schedules & Route Maps (PDF). Community Transit. March 12, 2017. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 
  32. ^ Community Transit System Map (PDF) (Map). Community Transit. September 2016. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 
  33. ^ Fiege, Gale (November 20, 2009). "Stanwood welcomes return of the train". The Everett Herald. Archived from the original on September 3, 2014. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 
  34. ^ Stanwood School District Proposed Board of Director Districts (Map). Stanwood-Camano School District. 2008. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 
  35. ^ "Public School District Directory Information: Stanwood-Camano School District". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 
  36. ^ "Contact Information & District Map". Stanwood-Camano School District. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 
  37. ^ "College Navigator: Results for 98292". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved July 2, 2017. 

External links[edit]