Despite the many obstacles in place against it, community has remained an important part of Black culture. Seattle’s Black community transformed the 12 acres of land once belonging to William Grose, as a result of exclusionary and discriminatory policies, into a haven of cultural pride known as the Central District. However, much like many other cities around the US, these inhabitants eventually found themselves faced with displacement. With so many people being priced out of the neighborhood, the community and its rich history of triumph and innovation began to fade.
From this arose Africatown Central District Preservation & Development Coalition. Their work has been purposed to interrupt the erasure of Blackness from the CD by highlighting the history and monuments that hide in plain sight on its streets. For the many Black people who have moved to the city and are looking for community, it serves as a compass by which they can find home. Its comprehensive website bridges the gap between events and attendees, Black businesses and consumers, community and people. Most importantly, the coalition is championing to reinstate ownership of land and other assets back into the Black community. They have plans to acquire the Liberty Bank property on 23rd & Union following its development.
With the guided tours, acquisitions, and comprehensive online platform, Africatown Central District Preservation & Development Coalition is keeping the soul of Seattle in the Central District for the generations to come.
To find out more about the work being done and resources available, visit their website.