by Pat Filer, AKCHO Awards Selection Committee Chair
On July 4, 1917, the SS Roosevelt, Admiral Peary’s flagship on his historic 1909 trip to the Arctic, passed through the Locks and led a marine parade of some 200 commercial and pleasure craft through the Ship Canal to Lake Union and Lake Washington. A carnival and fireworks attracted an estimated 50,000 celebrants out to celebrate the opening of the new waterway.
One hundred years later Discovery Modelers committed to creating a scale model of the two-masted steamship for display during the Ship Canal centennial celebrations. Model maker Clayton Naset was recruited to carry out the work with his funding coming from King County 4Culture and others.
A reception was held May 7, 2017 at the Locks to honor Naset. Interpretive signage and brochures, funded by King County 4Culture, tell the tale of this storied vessel. The six-foot model is on long-term loan to the Corps of Engineers and on display in the Locks Administration Building.