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Mossback's Northwest

Seattle’s Complicated History With Orcas

Mossback's Northwest

Seattle’s Complicated History With Orcas

3m 20s

Amid recent news of an orca mother carrying her dead calf and the reaction it garnered from humans around the world, Knute Berger reflects on our local connection with orcas. Namu, the first live, captive orca was displayed on the Seattle waterfront in 1965. Knute Berger charts the rise and fall of the whale that would come to define our relationship with orcas.

Play The Palouse Cowboy who Invented John Wayne

A rodeo champion from Palouse, WA, became a Hollywood stuntman just as "action Westerns" took off at the box office. Yakima Canutt could leapfrog onto a horse, fall off it, stage a wagon wreck or a fight, and usually as the double for a star. John Wayne studied Canutt, and modeled his famous walk and talk after him.

Play Bison Hunters in the San Juans

While digging a manmade pond on Orcas Island 10 years ago, a crew turned up some ancient bones that turned out to be hugely important: 12,000-year-old giant bison bones that showed signs of butchering by humans.

Play The Woman who Sailed Seattle onto the Silver Screen

The first Hollywood movie ever shot in Seattle was "Tugboat Annie," which turned into a movie series and a TV show celebrating a woman tugboat captain. It was a smash hit. Annie was a salty, formidable woman who was able to constantly outsmart her rivals.

Play The Northwest Outlaw They Couldn’t Capture

This guy was the last of the old West style outlaws in the Northwest, broke out of prison, shot guards, sheriffs and accomplices and was subject of the region’s greatest manhunt. He was finally found working on a ranch in eastern Washington and died in a shootout there with a local posse.

Play Japanese Castaways in the Northwest

For centuries, there is evidence that Japanese vessels have washed up on the Washington coast. Evidence exists in finds of iron tools in pre-contact archaeological sites. But probably the most dramatic was the arrival of three survivors of a drifting junk from Japan in the 1840s.

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