Amenities

Art in the Park

About

The main attraction of this small square in the northwest corner of the central business district is a life-size statue of Chief Seattle, for whom the city was named. Wrapped in a stained copper shawl, the chief stands on a pedestal with one arm raised in symbolic greeting to the first white settlers who landed at Alki Point in 1851. Bear heads at the base of the pedestal spout streams of water into a pool. Tilikum Place itself (the name meaning "welcome" or "greetings" in Chinook jargon) is located at the juncture of the original land claims of Denny, Boren, and Bell. Excerpt from Enjoying Seattle's Parks by Brandt Morgan.

Artist James Wehn also designed the seal for the City of Seattle, which includes a profile of Chief Seattle, and cast the concrete sculptures on the south-east portal of the I-90/Mount Baker Tunnel.

In 1907, the services of Seattle's pioneer sculptor, James A. Wehn, were secured. But then arguments developed over the subject matter to be used. After "The Chief" was decided upon, more arguments came about the ability of locate foundries to properly cast the sculpture.

After several mishaps and poor castings, Wehn threw "The Chief" into the Bay - it was sent to New York for casting by The Gorman Co. Therefore it was not until November 1912 that the unveiling took place by Miss Myrtle Loughery, the great-great-granddaughter of the Chief.