History's name game

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Tree-lined streets have been a draw in Walla Walla for more than a century, as this scene from about 1910 shows.

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Quite the contrast to today's pavers, an early paving crew works on West Main Street.

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As you can see from the notation on this 1915 photo the idea of Palouse Street being a lovely avenue is far from new.

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A view of First Avenue, then known as First Street, shows the typical state of dirt streets.

What's in a name?

A lot, perhaps, if it's the street where you live.

It signifies the location of your residence.

It's on your identification.

Maybe it's even part of your identity.

Certain streets in Walla Walla didn't always exist. Some were laid out differently when the city was founded, others were truncated until property was acquired to open them up to their current lengths.

Still others had different names -- to the point that would send a modern-day time traveler scrambling for a map.

A compilation of name changes during the early years is included in an edition of city ordinances published in 1914.

Although some of the "new" street names could again have changed since the publication, the information reveals that:

First Street (all numbered streets in Walla Walla later were designated avenues) once was named Singleton Avenue.

North Second Street was Washington Street.

Third was, at various times or in certain sections, Duluth Street or Adelia Avenue.

(No mention of Fourth)

Fifth was Paine.

Sixth was A Street.

Seventh was B.

Eighth was C.

Ninth was D.

North Ninth was Paxton Avenue.

Tenth Street was E Street.

North 11th was Bowman Avenue.

11th was F Street.

12th was G.

13th was Boundary Avenue.

North 13th was Washington Avenue.

Pine Street was North First.

Elm was North Second.

Moore was North Fourth.

Other streets whose names had changed included:

Bonnie Brae, which was Avalon.

Boyer Avenue was just Avenue or Fraternity Avenue at various times or in certain sections.

Alder was Baxter.

Emma was Catherine.

Center was Central Avenue.

Newell Street was Newell Drive.

Washington was Franklin.

Cherry Street was Moore.

Chestnut was Nursery.

North Clinton was Odessa.

Juniper was Park.

Park was Park Avenue.

Palouse was Roberts.

Oak was Vine.

Baker was Walnut.

Balm was Whitman.

Isaacs was an extension of East Main.


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