Thursday, 8 January 2009

Samoa Bridge and Indian Island

Tuesday 6th January 2009
Leaving the city of Eureka behind, Amy and I head along Highway 255 which effectively means transversing the mighty Samoa Bridge. Built in 1971, the bridge - or to be more exact, three bridges - provided a direct route from Eureka to the Samoa Peninsular and made the old Humboldt Bay Ferry service redundant. The bridges first of all links the mainland with Woodley Island, then Woodley Island with Indian Island, then Indian Island with the Peninsular.

Amy and I stopped off on Indian Island - or Duluwat Island as it was originally known - to pay a visit to the site of Tolowat village, the ancestral home of the Wiyot Indians. It was here in 1860 that a shocking massacre took place when a group of European settlers paddled over from the mainland and killed about one hundred Wiyot men, women and children. The tragic story of the massacre, of the slow decline of the tribe following the events of 1860, and of the attempts to preserve the sacred sites and the culture of the Wiyot people is told in full on the Wiyot Tribe website. Contributions are needed to help return parts of the island to the Wiyot people : a cause fully supported by these two virtual visitors.


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