Re: “Washington is named for a president who owned slaves. Should it be?” [Oct. 11, Pacific NW magazine]:

Short answer: No.

Longer answer: George and Mary Jane Washington were Black homesteaders who founded the town of Centralia in 1875. George Washington (1817-1905) remained an active civic leader until the end of his life. Washington is buried in the Centralia cemetery he donated to the town. (Read more on

It’s time for our Legislature to rename the state of Washington after these remarkable pioneers — and we wouldn’t even need to change our name, just our logo.

Cathy Tuttle, Seattle