Last week I drove north along the Interstate 5 to visit the small town of Centralia to wander around antique stores, the train depot and the library. Centralia was once a stagecoach stop between Kalama, to the south, and Tacoma to the north. In 1850, JG Cochran came from Missouri with his adopted son, a young African freeman. Cochran filed a claim and in 1852 sold it to his son for $6000. The new owner, G. Washington, built a home and the sold lots for $10. The town of Centralia was incorporated in 1886. Sadly, unemployment in Centralia is the highest in the state of Washington.
Amtrak still operates the train depot here as people climb aboard the Starlight for points north and south.
The town’s Carnegie Library is 101 years old and was built with donations from industrialist Andrew Carnegie. His donations between 1886 and 1919 built more than 1,679 libraries across the USA. This library is situated in beautiful park grounds dotted with memorials to our veterans from several wars. It’s worth a visit.
July 20 and 21st mark the annual antique festival in downtown Centralia. From what I saw on my visit I’d have to say that the antiques business contributes a lot to the town so if you get a chance, go wander Main St and help with the town’s economy.
(all photos were taken with my 1976 Hasselblad 500CM and Ilford FP4 Plus film)