Midland History

Where is Midland? (Part 1)

Researched and written by Ed Hennings – December 2007

The area that we have come to know as Midland in part was often referred to by the pioneers as Puyallup Hill. Taking advantage of the Governments Donation Land Grant of 1850, both Ezra Meeker and his older brother Oliver Meeker settled in the area in 1855. This was after their father, Jacob Meeker came west. Jacob settled in the area of South Tacoma. Not wanting to cross the sound Jacob talked both sons into moving to the mainland from their island home on McNeil Island. With this Ezra and Oliver staked out claims on the mainland next to each other. Ezra located his claim on the north side of Oliver’s claim. These claims were described as the forest between Nisqually Plain and the Puyallup River.

Hudson Bay employees often referenced the northern end of Nisqually Plain as the Puyallup Plain, which is all of South Tacoma and Lakewood. Just to the east of this was called the Puyallup Swamp, that area to the north of Wapato Lake and south following the base of the Puyallup Hill.

The claims combined borders are starting from the north and moving clockwise. The North border is now the 88th hundred block. The East border is now 24th Avenue E. jogging over at 96th to Swan creek, and south to 104th Street E. The South border is now 104th Street E. jogging over at 14th Avenue E to roughly 109th Street E. and west to Golden Given Road E. The West border is now Golden Given Road E. Golden Given Road E is also the east border of the Jessie Dunlap Donation Land Claim with the north and south borders roughly the same as the combined Meeker claims. Ezra talks on how his three closes neighbors were connected by a road and trails. The forest was so tall and thick that it was impossible to see any of the neighbor’s houses. Come night it was impossible to see for the stars and moon could not penetrate the tree canapé.

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Read more about Midland on Wikipedia.

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