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The Washington territory was first visited by the British and the Spanish in the 1700s. Lewis and Clark trekked across the Columbia River region and other coastal areas in 1806 and 1805, and conflicts occured between British and American settlers in the 1840s. To ensure that England and the United States did not fight a third war, the Oregon Treaty in 1846 set boundaries between British North American (now Canada) and the U.S.
Washington produces a lot of lumber from its hemlock, Douglas fir, ponderosa pine, white pine, larch, cedar, and spruce trees. It is number one in the production of lentils, apples, hops, dried peas, pears, spearmint oil, red raspberries, and sweet cherries. It also grows apricots, potatoes, grapes, asparagus, and peppermint.
The manufacturing base produces missiles, aircraft, ships, lumber, metals, machinery, chemicals, and transportation equipment. The commercial fishing industry provides salmon, bottom fish, and halibut to the rest of the country.
More than 1,000 dams dot the state. Their purposes are varied, including power production, irrigation, water storage, and flood control.
Interesting sites include North Cascades National Park, Mount Rainier, the Whitman Mission, Fort Vancouver National Historic Sites, the Pacific Science Center, and Seattle's Space Needle.
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