Pig-tail days

by Bo

Sophie Frye Bass was the granddaughter of Arthur Denny and the author of two charming little books on Seattle history, Pig-Tail Days in Old Seattle and When Seattle Was a Village. Both books consist primarily of her memories of growing up in pioneer Seattle. The one that concerns us here is Pig-Tail Days, published in 1937, which gives her account of the origins of the downtown street names and a few others.

Pig-Tail Days is an important source for street names; Bass, born in Seattle in 1867, grew up as the streets were being laid out and knew many of the people who did the naming. As a Seattle Times reviewer put it:

When one closes this thrilling little volume there will be no forgotten streets, no forgotten pioneers for the reader, as Mrs. Bass has carefully written of some of these forgotten streets, she has refreshed the memory concerning pioneers and their heroic deeds, their achievements (often unheralded and unsung) in the upbuilding of Seattle.