The Way Life Was…
For thousands of years, Bainbridge Island was part of the territory of the Suquamish people. The tribe had hunting and fishing camps along the shore.
In 1792, Captain George Vancouver was the first European to set foot on our small island. But it was an American surveying Puget Sound, Captain Charles Wilkes, who named it.
Intrigued by Wilke’s survey, settlers journeyed to the island, seeking a new way of life rich in opportunities in the 19th century – the world’s largest sawmill at Port Blakely and the bustling Hall Brothers’ Shipyard.
Water travel shaped early growth on Bainbridge. Neighborhoods grew around 30 mosquito Fleet Foot Ferry landings. Car ferry service began in the 1920’s and the Agate Pass Bridge opened in 1950.
Today, more than 23,000 people call these 28 square miles home. The island’s friendly people, exquisite beauty and proximity to Seattle and the Kitsap Peninsula continue to draw new residents and curious visitors.
Much of the once bucolic landscape and teeming strawberry fields have given way to suburban neighborhoods. However, residents remain sensitive to the island’s natural beauty and actively support our open spaces through local taxes and private resources.