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Pioneer Square

Take a walk through Seattle's historic district to see where the city was born
Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Unknown
Length: 0.6 miles
Duration: Unknown
Family Friendly

Overview:  Seattle's history is that of a pioneer town, fueled by persistent and entrepreneurial founders wanting to create a new life. The... more »

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Points of Interest

Welcome to Pioneer Place, the heart of Pioneer Square and the site of Seattle's first permanent settlement. Throughout the years this triangle park has played a major role as a social center, transportation hub, and general landmark, and today is surrounded by some of the city's most famous architecture.

You will quickly notice the totem pole... More

Yesler Way began the prominent street in Pioneer Square. It was originalyl called Mill Street because it was used in conjunction with Henry Yesler's sawmill on nearby Elliott Bay. It gained the nickname "Skid Road" (or "Skid Row") because logs cut from the hill were slid down the road greased up down to the mill below.

Yesler Way also served an ... More

3. Pedestrian Mall

This pedestrian street leading to Occidental Park was created in 1972, although the buildings on either site date back as far as the 1890s. The State Building (corner of Occidental and S Main St.) stands on what was once a blockhouse that early settlers used for safety while under attack by Salish Native American warriors in 1855.

It is easy to walk by this small park, but it can serve as a nice retreat from the busy streets outside. You can find chairs and tables to relax while you listen to the sounds of the waterfalls.

5. Fallen Firefighters' Memorial

Hai Ying Wu designed this sculpture for a competition at the University of Washington School of Arts. It remembers the 37 Seattle firefighters who have passed in the line of duty protecting the city. On S Main St, across from parking lot you will see the Seattle Fire Department which was established after the Great Fire of 1889.

You will find many things in the small Occidental Park: A small tourist information booth, an entry into the Grand Central Building, which holds a nice indoor mall, and two totems on the northern side. These totems were carved by Duane Pasco. The taller totem represents a legend of how a raven stole the moon, while the other shows a man riding... More

The 42-story Smith Tower was once the 4th tallest building in the world when it opened on July 4, 1914 held claim to the title of "Tallest Building West of the Mississippi" for 50 years until the Seattle Space Needle was built. It was designed by Gaggin & Gaggin for the successful typewriter company, L.C. Smith.

Today you take take a ride... More