Exploring South Seattle

A brief history of Seattle's traditionally black and Asian neighborhoods.



I love the retelling of physical memories of Seattle - anyone who has been here for years, and repeatedly walked the streets of a neighborhood has memories of places and people.


"Not unmixed"?? You mean.....mixed???


Charles, I don't read everything you have ever written but, this is the best thing I have ever read, that you have ever written.


What a wonderful morning read that was.


"But Seattle's white history is not all bad."

Thank you Charles, I was feeling so guilty this morning about my unbearable whiteness.




If you do another installment be sure to profile the history of Douglass/Truth branch library.


Well done


This warrants a series.


The history of the Judkins Park neighborhood is fascinating. Back in the 80’s I had a beau who lived there. It was a rough neighborhood, but the people were nice. When the Red Apple opened, that was a very big deal. That whole intersection was previously vacant land.


This is a great piece, Charles. And I learned some history.


I grew up in 2 Seattles - and this was one of them. My school’s neighborhood, and so some of my school-friends’ neighborhood. The other Seattle I spent more time in. The whiter, northern part. I was never curious nor smart enough to dig into why there was a difference.

I live in and love South Seattle now. This history is like the version of my past where I understood more, saw things more clearly. It’s a funny feeling to mix reminiscences with hindsight.


Before this was a 'black' area, wasn't it an 'Italian' area? If my memory serves, the whole Rainier Valley used to be known as 'Garlic Gulch'. A couple of holdout businesses from that period include Remo Borrachini's and the original Vince's down in Rainier Beach (granted, that finally folded a few years ago).

Charles, the only constant in Life is Change. The CD and points south are getting whiter and more affluent. Before this it was blacks and Asians. Before that Italians. If you go back far enough, you have the Duwamish, I suppose.

Mudede: 'These neighborhoods are traditionally black and Asian'
The Italians: 'Excuse me?'
Chief Seattle: 'Bitch, please.'


Gah Charles, I wish you write like this more. That part about the man and his 2 bitey dogs, and how there was to be no satisfaction with the inferno aftermath got me. And yeah, I hated that dude too.

A small note: the Panama Hotel and the belongings of the internees mentioned here are featured in the novel “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet”. It’s a worthy read for those interested in more of Seattle history.


The headline writer did this piece a disservice by stating the article that follows would be a tour of South Seattle, which many understand as the part of the city southof the I-90 interchamge.

I suppose "black and asian Seattle" could have been dismissef as stereotypical, but really?


Funny....in 1997 I lived in Brooklyn near Flatbush, also a site of Magic Johnson's civic good deeds. That man got around!!