On the 10th anniversary of 9/11, I wanted to be around people. So I took Todd to one of the few Seattle events commemorating 9/11 that was happening at night. We drove down 99 and over the Seattle bridge to Alki Beach in West Seattle.Beth Partin's photos, Alki Beach,

First we stopped at the Loghouse Museum, a small museum about the arrival of the white settlers in 1851 run by the West Seattle Historical Society. Although the settlers soon moved up the coast to what is now downtown Seattle, Alki Beach was the place they first landed. It is called the “birthplace of Seattle.”

Alki is a word in Chinook Indian jargon that means “by and by.” I didn’t even know that there was such a thing as Chinook Indian jargon, which I believe was a language created to facilitate trade. The Chinook Indians recently achieved recognition by the federal government.

The Duwamish tribe, of which Chief Seattle was a member (he was also Suquamish), does not have federal status. They were recognized by the Clinton administration, but that decision was overturned by the Bush administration, probably in the early 2001 frenzy to overturn anything from the Clinton era. The Duwamish have, however, found the money to build a longhouse, which is located east of the West Seattle Golf Course on Marginal Way.

After we went through the museum, we walked down to Alki Beach and ate dinner. Then we joined the crowd around the replica of the Statue of Liberty on Alki Beach, where people brought flowers and offerings in 2001 after the 9/11 attacks. People put flowers and stones and writings around the base of the statue. The West Seattle Historical Society showed up with items salvaged from the original memorial, as well as candles, and people began lighting the candles and arranging them in front of the memorial. The mood was quiet but not really somber. Occasionally someone broke out in song.

There were lots of people taking pictures and video. Just down the beach, children played in the cold surf. As we walked back to our car, we noticed the moon was full.

I put my pictures of the Alki Beach 9/11 memorial on Flickr.

Leave A Comment