The public deserves a clarification regarding news stories about the ship the Lady Washington. (“Brig Lady Washington slates May 23-27 stop,” Jan. 15 Columbian.) In the book, “Morning of Fire” by Scott Ridley, the Lady Washington is described as a small chase vessel commanded by Robert Gray. It accompanied the larger ship Columbia captained by John Kendrick. Kendrick was, of course, in charge of the expedition. Gray was commanding the Columbia when it sailed into the mouth of the river which George Vancouver named on his map, “Columbia’s River.” Kendrick was actually the unsung hero of the expedition, thanks to the devious and glory-seeking Gray.
After reading the book, I become angry every time I hear Robert Gray’s name and especially when he continues to receive credit for Kendrick’s courage and dedication. Please tell us if Ridley is wrong. Otherwise, we should begin paying tribute to Kendrick, not Gray.