Puget Sound Quiz – Answers

Okay, time for the big reveal. Here are the answers and, in case you didn’t suspect it, all of them but one are found in Homewaters, which you can buy direct from me, with a signature. (Cost is $33, which includes shipping, taxes, and autograph.)

  1. Answer A. In 2009, archeologists found hundreds of pieces of basalt, rhyolite, dacite, and chert, which had been hewn into projectile points, knives, scrapers, and hammerstones. The site is located along Bear Creek. No coffee mugs were found: apparently the Bear Creek people eschewed coffee, or at least mugs.
  2. Answer B — The geoduck was found near Richmond Beach and dated by counting the growth rings. A 205-year-old rougheye rockfish was found in Alaska and biologists have determined that red sea urchins have the possibility of cracking two centuries in age. Both species live in Puget Sound, so Answer D could also be correct.
  3. Answer C – Bing Crosby did have an ancestor with the name of Clanrick, who did pilot steamers, but he didn’t operate the Capital. The answer is the story. The Capital lived to steam again after its short and muddy stroll.
  4. Answers A and D – The answer depends on whether you think that Apostolos Valerianos, better known as Juan de Fuca, saw his eponymous strait or not; most historians think he did not. If not, then the first is Frances Barkley, wife of Charles Barkley, who was the first European woman to reach this region, in 1787. So, being the generous soul I am, I consider both to be correct.
  5. Answer B – Built to protect the Sound from enemy invaders, the Triangle of Fire, which consisted of Forts Flagler, Casey, and Warden, was at its maximum strength in 1910. No shots were ever fired at any enemy. I am just glad it’s not Answer A, as that sounds dangerous.
  6. Answer C – xw̌əlč is normally translated as salt water and is the oldest known name that refers to the body of water we call Puget Sound.
  7. Answer A, C, and E – Quimper, Fidalgo, and Haro are three of the many Spanish names on the landscape, a clear reminder of Spanish exploration in this region, an often overlooked part of the area’s history.
  8. Answers B and C – Wilkes generally chose pretty straightforward names, such as Fox (ship surgeon John L. Fox) but he also included a couple of curiosities, such as Bung Bluff (south end of Herron Island) and Ned and Tom (near McNeil Island), which never made it onto any maps. 
  9. Answer B – Yep, you guessed it, those guns were powerful enough to lob a shell from tech giant to tech giant.
  10. Answer D – Eighteen species, in one of the richest areas of kelp diversity anywhere, make their home in Puget Sound. 
  11. Answer B – Sea urchins are a primary consumer of kelp and if their numbers aren’t kept in check by animals such as sea otters, they can ravage a kelp forest. Sadly seersuckers have long been on the decline in Puget Sound though sartorial sightings are periodically reported.
  12. Answer B – Although they sometimes refer to themselves as age readers, sclerochonologists (sclero-meaning hard or hardness; and chrono-or time) figure out the age of fish by counting growth rings. They are very very patient and precise people. 
  13. Answer B – In the 1940s, there was a perceived need for Vitamins A and D and Puget Sound fishers and processors capitalized on this by harvested millions of pounds of sharks. All that was “needed” were the livers so the rest of the fish was tossed, unused for any purpose. 
  14. Answer D – Although such an intriguing specimen was found, apparently none of the archeologists made any such comment, but I did compare it to a turducken. It’s in the book.
  15. Sadly, it is Answer D. Nearly all of us contribute to this phenomenon of putting more of these pollutants in Puget Sound. PAHs also impact salmon and rockfish.
  16. Answer D – Our namesake Peter Puget had an eye for the flowers. 
  17. Answer B – Not only did Charles Wilkes leave behind a legacy of names, he also thought rather highly of the inland sea. 
  18. Answer A – The Rafeedie decision has been called the shellfish equivalent of the Boldt decision.
  19. Answer D – One of the hallmarks of this region, according to Butler and Campbell, is that over thousands of years of catching and consuming fish, the Coast Salish peoples did not deplete their most important food source. They write that there are many lessons to learn from this behavior.
  20. Answer B – Like many early writers in local papers about steamers in the Sound, the author complained. “Though they take a whole week to make a twenty-four hours’ voyage, they hurry in and out of a way-port as if the devil or a sheriff was always after them, and the people generally are beginning to indulge the hope that one or more of those personages may speedily catch and keep them.”

    15-20 correct – I will seek you out the next time I write about Puget Sound.
    10-15 correct – Sit back, relax, and enjoy the beauty of Puget Sound, knowing you know some cool info about it.
    5-10 correct – Sit back, relax, and enjoy the beauty of Puget Sound, knowing you learned some cool info about it.
    0-5 correct – Have I got a book for you to bone up on your Puget Sound facts.

    Here’s a link to order Homewaters direct from me, if you feel you want to get 100% on the next quiz.

Puget Sound Quiz

With the publication of Homewaters, I thought it would be fun to create a little quiz related to Puget Sound. I will also provide the answers next week. 

1. The oldest archaeological evidence for people in Puget Sound was found in Redmond and dates from at least 12,500 years ago. What is it?
a. Hundreds of pieces of rock used to make tools.
b. Bones from a giant sloth with an embedded antler projectile point.
c. Pieces of a canoe.
d. MS-DOS branded coffee mug

2. What is the oldest known animal collected in Puget Sound?
a. A 205-year old rougheye rockfish
b. A 173-year old geoduck.
c. A 200-year old red sea urchin.
d. All of the above.

3. What is famous about the steamer Capital?
a. It was the second steamer to arrive in Puget Sound.
b. It was piloted by Bing Crosby’s great-granduncle Clanrick Crosby.
c. After being abandoned by its captain, the paddlewheeler continued spinning and sort of walked itself across the tideflats at Olympia.
d. It inspired Karl Marx to name one of his books.

4. Which of these sailors was the first European to see the Strait of Juan de Fuca?
a. Apostolos Valerianos
b. James Cook
c. George Vancouver
d. Frances Barkley

5. What does the Triangle of Fire refer to?
a. A flaming Hamentashen
b. Forts Flagler, Casey, and Warden
c. Amazon, Microsoft, and Starbucks
d. Insignia on Boeing planes during WWII

6. The Lushootseed word for Puget Sound is xw̌əlč, often written in English as Whulge. What does it mean?
a. Beautiful place
b. Salt water
c. Home
d. None of the above

7. Spanish explorers were the first known Europeans to sail down the Strait of Juan de Fuca. What place names reflect Spanish influence? Choose all that apply.
a. Quimper Peninsula
b. Eld Inlet
c. Fidalgo Island
d. Strait of Georgia
e. Haro Strait
f. Toandos Peninsula

8. Captain Charles Wilkes brought the US Exploring Expedition into Puget Sound in 1841. More than 260 of his place names are still on maps. Which of these names he created are not on modern maps? Choose all that apply.
a. Fox Island
b. Bung Bluff
c. Ned and Tom
d. Vendovi Island
e. Port Townsend
f. Bainbridge Island

9. Fort Warden formerly had disappearing guns, mortars, and barbette guns. A 12-inch disappearing gun could shoot a half-ton shell how far?
a. Length of a typical pre-pandemic Seattle traffic jam
b. From the Amazon HQ to the Microsoft Campus (~10 miles)
c. To hell and back
d. A stone’s throw

10. How many species of kelp live in Puget Sound?
a. Fewer than 5
b. 5-10
c. 10-15
d. 15-20

11. What are some of the most voracious predators of kelp and why have they proliferated?
a. Seersuckers, because they are well suited to consuming seaweed.
b. Sea urchins, because of the overhunting of sea otters, which formerly kept urchin populations in check.
c. Ratfish, because they sort of look like rabbits and breed like them, too.
d. Kelp rockfish, because they have grown larger with climate change.

12. People who study the age of fish by counting the annual rings on the ear bone, or otolith, are called?
a. Fish whisperers
b. Sclerochronologists
c. Chronotolithophiles
d. Bone accountants

13. In the 1940s, the Seattle Times proclaimed Seattle as the “Vitamin A-D Capital of the World.” Why?
a. Scientists at the UW had invented an artificial method to produce the two vitamins.
b. Much of the nation’s vitamins A and D came from the livers of soupfin sharks and Seattle was a major processor of the sharks.
c. Botanists at the UW had discovered a source for the vitamins in Douglas fir trees.
d. It was an April Fool’s day story.

14. At the Old Man House in Suquamish, archaeologists unearthed a curious find of a herring nested in a littleneck clam nested in a butter clam. They described it as what?
a. A precursor of the modern food trend of spending too much time making your food look pretty.
b. A precursor of a turducken.
c. A precuror of a fish stick.
d. None of the above.

15. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are a significant pollutant in Puget Sound, causing malformed hearts in herring embryos. What produces PAHs?
a. Burning oil and gas
b. Driving a car
c. Cooking meat
d. All of the above


16. The flowers were “by no Means unpleasant to the Eye.” Who wrote this?
a. Archibald Menzies
b. David Douglas
c. Jimi Hendrix
d. Peter Puget

17. “There is no country in the world that possesses waters equal to these.” Who wrote this?
a. Seattle Chamber of Commerce brochure 1934
b. Charles Wilkes
c. Peter Puget
d. Bertha Knight Landes

18. Danica Sterud Miller, professor of American Indian Studies at the University of Washington, told me: “[The] Rafeedie [decision] was about reaffirming our language, decolonizing the space, and reasserting our ability to self-determine. It was a profound moment.” The Rafeedie decision refers to what?
a. A law case that resulted in 1994 in a 50/50 split of the shellfish harvest between tribal and nontribal harvesters.
b. A law case in 1945 that resulted in the 50/50 split of the salmon catch between tribal and nontribal harvesters.
c. A law case in 2016 that resulted in the denial of permits for a coal port at Cherry Point.
d. A law case in 1989 that resulted in the federal recognition of geoducks as a premier species.

19. Archaeologists Sarah Campbell and Virginia Butler wrote in a 2010 paper that fish managers should make a “greater investment in the activities that foster direct connections among people, fish, and other resources.” What was this in reference to?
a. Encouraging more investement in urban streams and habitat.
b. Encouraging less reliance on isolated technological fixes that focus only on salmon.
c. The archaeological record of fish bones that showed that Native people sustainably harvested salmon for more than 7,500 years.
d. All of the above.

20. “Steamers come and go “like a thief in the night,” and no man knows the day nor the hour.” Who wrote this?
a. Murray Morgan, Puget’s Sound
b. Seattle Weekly Gazette, August 20, 1864
c. Peter Puget
d. Hazel Heckman, Island in the Sound