Tom Melberg, a Fort Steilacoom reenactor will present the story of Captain Bennett Hill and the 1849 founding of the fort. The program will be at Fort Steilacoom, on the grounds of Western State Hospital at 9601 Steilacoom Blvd., Lakewood, Washington, September 13, at 2 p.m, Quarters 2.
Captain Hill with a company of 23 men and a bugler of the 1st U.S. Artillery arrived in August. Hill arranged to rent one square mile of the Heath Farm from the Puget Sound Agricultural Company for $50 a month. Heaths buildings were used for barracks and an officers headquarters until several log buildings were bult for two officers quarters, hospital, company storehouse, guard house, a commissary and bakehouse.
The first court convened north of the Columbia was held at the fort in October when Snoqualmie Indians accused of killing Leander Wallace were tried. And so began the military presence that protected the American in;terest and settlers in the Pugest Sound area.