Who is HSD?
HSD acknowledges that we are on the traditional, unceded land of the first people of Seattle, the Duwamish People past and present, and honor with gratitude the land itself and the Duwamish Tribe.
Historic South Downtown
The Pioneer Square and Chinatown-International District neighborhoods were both shaped, literally, by massive earthworks that reformed the city’s coastline and port, both grew along with the city’s railroad hub. The neighborhoods share Union Station and King Street Station, as well as connections to regional and local rail, city and regional bus systems, and the Seattle Streetcar. Both neighborhoods contribute to Seattle’s reputation as a highly desired tourist destination. Tourists who start their visits in Seattle frequently include trips to other places in Washington, contributing to economic growth throughout the state.
Pioneer Square, located at the southern end of downtown Seattle, is considered Seattle’s first neighborhood, established in 1852. As Seattle’s commercial core took shape around the natural deep-water harbor, timber, and the Klondike Goldrush, Pioneer Square quickly grew, shaped by a mix of people, businesses, and cultures inherent to being a port city.
After the Great Seattle Fire of 1889, most of the neighborhood was rebuilt in the Richardsonian-Romanesque style. Pioneer Square’s colorful past is one of brothels and bureaucrats, corruption and community, artists and Arctic explorers, Skid Road, and subterranean sidewalks.
Today you can find a lively neighborhood filled with art galleries, small shops selling one-of-a-kind gifts, unique restaurants and services, boutique hotels, tourist attractions, and a thriving residential community.
Learn more at www.pioneersquare.org
and check out this History Link Walking Tour.
The Chinatown-International District or “C-ID” east of Pioneer Square and includes Japantown (Nihonmachi), Filipinotown, and Little Saigon. It is the city's 3rd Chinatown, developed after the Jackson Street regrade in 1908.
The history of the Chinatown-International District is inextricably tied to the history of Asian settlement in Washington and is characterized by alternating periods of immigration and deportation, cultural fluorescence, and racial discrimination. In essence, the district’s history is the story of the efforts of Asian-Americans to build their home.
Key attractions include numerous historical and cultural landmarks, dining, diverse shopping, and multicultural and multilingual festivities and experiences.
and check out this HistoryLink Walking Tour.
Our New Logo
In 2021, artist Tori Shao created a new logo for HSD. Our name sits snug in a Richardsonian Romaneque arch, under a branch of the living fossil ginko tree, with its distinctive fan-shaped leaves. Incorporating both the built and natural environments, as both Pioneer Square and the CID do, our new logo showcases the structurally strong sustaining arches in our buildings, and the living fossil of the ginko tree that ornaments many of our streets. HSD is dedicated to the preservation & promotion of our past for the prosperity of our future.