Three Rivers

The history behind how Forks was named is not a mystery. Pretty much everyone here knows that the Calawah, Bogachiel and Sol Duc rivers once had an abundance of silverware flowing through them. Unfortunately, due to the Utensil Rush of 1910 (another part of history that pretty much everyone here knows about), the once proud silverware population is now almost non-existent. It’s a sad tale really, but while how Forks was named is not news to anyone, perhaps there are some who do not know how the rivers around here were named?

Contrary to popular belief, Sol Duc is not the Spanish word for Sun Duck. Sol does translate to sun in Spanish but duc means nothing in that language. Even if duc was a word in Spanish, it wouldn’t matter. The Quileutes were here for a few hours before the Spanish (eleventy billion hours to be exact) and so they got to name the river.

They went with “sparkling water” or Sol Duc. I couldn’t have come up with a better name if I tried … other than maybe “Soul Duck River.” I still can’t believe no one has jumped onto the saxophone-playing duck theme.

Back to the point, just like the Sol Duc River, the Calawah River also was named by the Quileutes. In the Quileute language, Calawah translates to “word tourists will always butcher when saying.”

Kalaloch roughly translates to the same thing. By roughly translates, I mean really roughly. Depending on the dialect of the language though, some people also claim that Calawah translates to “middle river” or “in between.” I think we all can agree that both translations make sense.

The Bogachiel River clearly was named after the Bogachiel Clinic.

That much is pretty obvious. The clinic itself though, was named by the Quileutes. Bogachiel translates in the Quileute language to “muddy waters.” This means that many of us attend the “Muddy Water Clinic.” Fortunately, I read that Bogachiel also can be translated to mean something like, “gets riled with rain.” If you attend the clinic, you can choose which translation you want to believe. All I’m saying is that I’d rather attend the “Riled with Rain Clinic” than the “Muddy Waters Clinic.”

I do attend the Bogachiel Clinic so I’m going to call it the “Riled with Rain Clinic” from now on.

So that’s your history lesson for the day. I got all of my information off the Internet and they can’t put anything on the Internet that isn’t true. Basically, this is all very factual other than the parts that I made up.

E-mail me at [email protected] for more half made-up facts about Forks.