By Marianne Lincoln
ELK PLAIN, WA — Spanaway currently has two post office buildings. A request has been made from Joint Base Lewis McChord to the Postmaster General in Washington D.C. to give “Bethel Station” it’s own zip code. The reason has to do with the number of gates to the military base being based on the number of zip codes along its boundaries.
I am certain with all the problems with traffic getting into and out of JBLM, there would be a sigh of relief to know there could be another route into the base. But locally, we have a problem as well. The second branch office in Spanaway was misnamed when it was opened. It should be named for the community, not the nearby shopping center.
This community name goes back thousands of years, unlike the name Loveland given by the railroad in 1907. (It’s the same community.) The indigenous people of the area came here to hunt elk in the grassy prairie land. When the Hudson Bay Company set up their farming operations in 1833-1869, they, too referred to it as Elk Plain. The name is on the maps they drew to settle their land claims in court.
Chester Thompson, as historian for the local grange in the 1930’s wrote an article on local history which resulted in the name of the grange being changed from Loveland to Elk Plain.
Please help our community keep its rightful, historic name! THere is no reason to recognize Ruth Bethel, she never lived here.
Write your letter and mail it in an envelope with the correct postage to:
U.S. Postal Service
475 L’Enfant Plaza, SW
Washington, DC 20260-0010
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