Steilacoom was founded by Lafayette Balch, a sea captain from Maine, and officially incorporated in 1854. It is the oldest incorporated town in Washington and has 4 individual buildings and sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including the oldest Catholic Church in the state and the first Protestant Church north of the Columbia River, as well as the Steilacoom Historic District, with 68 contributing properties.
Steilacoom's main source of early prosperity was the manufacture and export of lumber to San Francisco. When the United States Congress established the Washington Territory on March 2, 1853, Governor Isaac Stevens chose Steilacoom to be the seat of Pierce County.
- 1 Steilacoom, Ketron, and Anderson Island Ferry, 56 Union Ave (Very end of Union Ave), ☏ . A county-operated ferry system serving Steilacoom, Anderson Island, and Ketron Island.
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