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  • Asotin County Geography



    Asotin
    Asotin, a county, a town and a creek in the southeastern corner of the state. The name is from the Nez Perce language and means "eel creek" from the abundance of eels caught there. The town at the mouth of the creek, where it flows into Snake River, took the same name in 1878, as did the county when it was organized under the law of October 27, 1883.

    Anatone
    A town in Asotin county. What is now known as Ten Mile Creek was known to the Indians as Anatone. It is claimed that it was so called for a noted Indian woman who lived near the present site of Anatone. (J.C. Packwood, in Names MSS., Letter 381.) Note: Anatone, it is on current maps.

    Bly
    A postoffice in Asotin County. It is named in honor of the postmaster, Joseph Bly.

    Clarkston
    A town in Asotin county, on the opposite bank of the Snake River from Lewiston, Idaho. It is named in honor of Captain William Clark of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, 1803-1806. It is a fine honor for the two leaders of that great expedition to have their names thus borne by thriving cities connected by an inter-state bridge. Clarkston was begun with the name of "Concord," as some of the promoters of the irrigation plans had their homes in Concord, Massachusetts. By petition of the citizens the name was changed to Clarkston on January 1, 1900.

    Silcott
    A postoffice at the mouth of Alpowa Creek, in the northern part of Asotin county. It was named for John Silcott, the pioneer who ran the ferry across the Clearwater, to Lewiston, before the that city was named. (Cliff M. Wilson, Postmaster at Silcott, in Names MSS. Letter 240.) William S. Newland filed the plat for "Alpowa City" on April 10, 1882, but nothing came of it and the place lapsed into Silcott in 1885. (Illustrated History of Southeastern Washington, page 697.) Source: Meany, Edmond S. Origin of Washington Geographic Names. Seattle, WA: University of Washington Press, 1923. (Republished: Detroit: Gale, 1968) Meany collected these discriptions from many sources including letters collected in Names MSS or Names Manuscripts. These letters were written in response to Meany's request for information. 608 responses useful replies were numbered and used in his book. Publication was begun as a series of articles in the Washington Historical Quarterly starting in October 1917.


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