Finding A Bunker Part 1: Text & Info Version


BTMS And the Remains of The Cold War

For those who do not know, schools built in the years 1957 to 1991 were required to have fallout shelters. BTMS was built in 1968 and finished in 1969, during the Cold War. The idea of a Fallout Shelter seems crazy nowadays, right? In the ’50s-’90s it was pretty practical since we were constantly under the threat of nuclear missile attacks from the Soviet Union (Also known as the CCCP or the USSR), the sad thing is if a nuclear war ever hits the U.S. we wouldn’t be alive, even if we were in a fallout shelter. The fallout shelters were there to provide a false sense of security to reduce panic and stress.


How did we come up with this somewhat-crazy idea?


So how did we get the idea to look for a fallout shelter? Well on about Feb 7th (2023), we, the two authors of this article, talked about the possibility of a fallout shelter underneath our school. However, we decided that more than likely there was not going to be a shelter due to it sounding quite outlandish. But on Feb 12th James heard a rumor from a student, (The name of this student is unknown) that the small door in the Dennis Myers conference room leads to a ladder leading to a crawl space, and rumored in the crawl space was a fallout shelter. So we got to work, we first began with the original student floorplans, which did not cover the full tunnel plan, but only a slight portion of the tunnels. After many days of researching the floor plans and looking around the school for anything suspicious, and asking the district repetitively to get access to the maintenance tunnels we finally got permission to go through the tunnels which should happen soon.


Why are we so interested in fallout shelters and why in the heck would we cover something like this?


Well, Sebastian and I are interested in Civilian Defense and Nuclear concepts. Civilian Defense was formed in 1939 as a non-profit, that anyone who was physically fit and of age was allowed to join, and were tasked with lending a helping hand to Law Enforcement, Fire and Rescue, and the Military, in case of a natural disaster or Nuclear war. James and a few other students are in the last surviving department of Civil Defense, Civil Air Patrol (USAF Auxiliary).

In honor of Women’s History month included is an image of a recruitment ad showing that women could join Civil Defense too. circa 1944
Also, James and I are into the science behind nuclear materials like Uranium (pictured above).

The real reason we are covering this is to stop confusion with the common question “what in the heck is inside our school”


The Stepping Stones

When James first heard about the fallout shelter, Sebastian then suggested we dig deeper because we both decided that it would be an interesting topic for the Brief. We couldn’t find much on the internet so we pulled out the school archive. We found the ground and first floor plans along with some Polaroids of construction, but we couldn’t quite figure out if there was a bunker, so we took it to the next level by asking permission from both Edmonds School District and Principal Mr. Morrison to go into the school Utility/Maintenance tunnels, right there is where we are going to stop the text part of the story, please stay tuned until we post the photos of the Maintenance tunnels and the unexcavated areas on the Brief. The rest of the story will be posted along with the photos.