History of the Resort

Charles Townsend

The history of The Guemes Island Resort begins with Charlie Townsend. Born in Missouri in 1908, the son of a hog farmer and a Boomer, he moved to Washington State as a teenager and worked in the lumber mills. His dream was always to own his own business, and, in 1947, he bought the land on Guemes Island where the Resort is located. 

He started 'Charlie's Guemes Island Fishing Resort' with one rental cabin. Working in Seattle during the week, he joined his family on Guemes on the weekends to work the Resort. There was no advertising except word of mouth, and no electricity until the late fifties. The Resort grew from one cabin to six, operated a fishing store and provided summer vacations for loyal guests year after year.

Charlie's wife Alice died in 1977, just a few months short of their 50th anniversary, and he later married a close friend Pearl, a marriage that lasted 13 years until Charlie’s death in 1995, at the age of 87.

Charlie's Guemes Island Fishing Resort, an Island tradition, continues today as The Guemes Island Resort, with Island-based owners, Mark and Kelly Linnemann.