Jamie Hale/The Oregonian

The first thing you notice inside the museum is a map. Covering a large space on the wall, it shows the mouth of the Columbia River (which rolls by, just outside) and is dotted with dozens of little markers like tombstones – each one a shipwreck in the “Graveyard of the Pacific.”

This legacy of loss lies at the heart of the
 Columbia River Maritime Museum in Astoria, a monument to the struggles and successes of those who chose to spend their lives in one of the most dangerous places on the Pacific coast.

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