Manette Real Estate Information

In 1841, the Wilkes Expedition discovered the waters surrounding the present site of Manette and named them Port Orchard and Dyes’ Inlet. Manette peninsula of the early days was protected on both sides by a fort and block house. The Indians had built a fort on what is now the Sheridan mud flats. The Suquamish tribe and others in order to protect themselves from the warlike Indians of British Columbia, scooped out a circular hole in the ground covering about one-fourth acre and banked it high on the edges with mud and drove stakes close together and back of this crude fort they all gathered whenever they enemy appeared.

On the eastern side of the peninsula the white people built a block house at the at the Port Orchard mill site for safety in case of an attack, but fortunately, it was never used as such.

The old homestead of Theodore O Williams was platted into town lots and filed for record on March 21, 1891, and named Decatur in honor of Admiral Decatur. But on account of the fact that a site for a navy yard was being surveyed, which it was thought would take in all the land as far north as Rocky Point, it was decided not to try to sell any lots in Decatur which site would become the residence section of the navy yard, until a site had been definitely chosen. In the meantime, there was a feverish activity to buy up all land surrounding Decatur and as mush as $45,000 was offered for options on a few acres of wild land.

While the town site was being held, a post office by the name of Decatur was started in Stevens county, which necessitated the changing of the name and later it was named Manette, at a community meeting in honor of the small boat Manette, which was the first boat to stop at the dock regularly. The name Nipsic was suggested in place of Decatur, but was voted down in favor of Manette.

Transportation was the element that held back the development of Manette until Mr. Crank started operating the launch Port Washington in 1902 between Bremerton and Manette with Frank Clay, Harry Hansen and various others trying to make a temperamental engine run on schedule. The same boat also carried mail to Port Washington bay points, and during the interval, passengers were ferried across the narrows by row boat. As Manette, now known as East Bremerton, grew, the residents became more dissatisfied with the transportation problem and began to talk of the feasibility of building a bridge across the narrows. But it wasn’t until 1924 when George A Sears, president of the Union Bridge Co., and John P Hartman, a well-known Seattle lawyer, actually looked into the possibility of financing and building a bridge, that the dream became a near actuality. The actual construction of the bridge was started Nov 7, 1929 by the Union Bridge Co. The dedication ceremony took place on June 21, 1930, when the traffic was opened to the public for the first time, physically uniting Bremerton and East Bremerton by a bond of steel and a stronger bond of good fellowship.

To the north and west of the beautiful Olympic mountains greet the eye, glancing downward, there are the Narrows, winding past the site of the old Indian fort and widening into Port Washington Bay. To the south and east the mountain rising magnificent. In the near distance are seen the county seat and the Veteran’s Home surrounded by banks overflung by patterns of forest and grassland. Almost beneath are the busy wharves with launches and auto ferries plying the waters, and on beyond the Navy Yard with its modern battleships.