Shaw Island

Located in the geographic center of the San Juans, this smallest of the four islands (at only 7.7 square miles or 19.9 sq. km.), is home to a mere two hundred residents, the most notable being the Franciscan nuns who meet the ferry and run the the only store at the ferry landing. This is the only commercial venture on the island. There are no restaurants or overnight accommodation, but the one campsite is a beauty.
Kayakers at Shaw Island County Park, Shaw Island
Kayakers at Shaw Island County Park, Shaw Island
"The little red schoolhouse", Shaw Island
The little red schoolhouse
When you encounter an old reefnet boat listing forlornly on the lawn, you'll know you've arrived at the log cabin historical museum and library, both across the street from the little red schoolhouse. What makes this schoolhouse different from other island one room schools, however, is the fact that this one is still operating. Serving children in grades K-8, it's also listed on the National Historic Register. It's no longer accurate to call it a "one roomed schoolhouse", however. It's recently acquired a second room for computers!
The museum is the original rebuilt post office, and if you can get there during its limited visiting hours, it's a virtual treasure trove of old photos, written records, and farming implements. The library, designed by Shaw Island artist and architect, Malcolm Cameron, is entirely supported by the residents and frequently hosts readings by local writers. Just south of Blind Bay is the well used community center. In the center of the island is the expansive Our Lady of the Rock, a Benedictine Monastery and Retreat, working farm, and chapel.
House directory, Shaw Island
House directory, Shaw Island