The locks in the 1960s.
  • Washington State Archives, used with permission
  • The locks in the 1960s.

This is not just the birthday of America. It's the birthday of the Ballard Locks, too. When the locks first opened on July 4, 1917, they created a link between the salt waters of Puget Sound and the fresh waters of Lake Washington—and, in the process, dried up the Black River and further ruined a way of life long enjoyed by the Duwamish people. There was a celebratory boat parade on that day, and it was led by the SS Roosevelt.