Situated on the delta near the mouth of the Skagit River, La Conner was founded in the early 1860s and is Skagit County's oldest community. La Conner was briefly the county seat before Mount Vernon. Early settlers diked hundreds of acres of land, creating farmland which would surpass per-acre yields around the globe. La Conner soon became a popular farm community and a hub for steamers carrying passengers and freight from Seattle. Logging and fishing prospered until the Great Depression. Artists settled in the area in the 1940's, enjoying the unique light and inspiration from nature; renowned artists including Morris Graves, Guy Anderson, Richard Gilkey and Clayton James were leaders of the Northwest School of Art. In the 1970s, tourists discovered the area along with folks seeking the peace and quiet of an old fashioned town.
Today, La Conner is a balance of people who work and live here, including the Swinomish Tribal Community, Shelter Bay residents from across the Swinomish Channel, fishermen, farmers, artists, and carpenters - a diverse mix of cultures and educational backgrounds. La Conner is a regional, national, and international tourist destination. If you need a place to refresh, and browse through interesting shops and art galleries; if you want to watch the waterfront or enjoy fine restaurants, inns and bed & breakfasts, then come to La Conner. You can also enjoy natural beauty and wildlife such as bird watching. La Conner is wintering grounds for swans and Canadian geese. The fertile farmlands continue to produce food and seed crops and, of course, our annual tulip festival is celebrated around the world.
La Conner is on the National Registry of Historic places. The Civic Garden Club was the first courthouse north of Seattle. We value our history and heritage. We are an exciting place to live and to visit.