Licton Springs

Thin Places


Licton Springs

Licton Springs is an important site to the native Duwamish people, who are actively involved in a campaign to decolonize the park:

IF YOU VISIT: Please be respectful of the area and its history. Consider collecting litter and disposing of it properly.

I had heard of the neighborhood but was not well versed on the history of the site – only recently discovering there is an actual spring there. The Seattle Parks department website says this is a park you “must see” but has no pictures of the AMAZING SPRING oozing this red iron mud…

Let me tell you all now: YOU MUST GO THERE. Licton Springs is a magical park camouflaged by the typical playgrounds and picnic’s and people walking right by. Meanwhile, hidden in plain sight is this amazing cold spring bubbling up from the ground. While searching for the spring, I found myself in all of these weird paths and foot bridges, stumbling across people alone in their own world with their backs turned to me, staring into the brush. I tried talking to a few people and most of the people “there” would not even acknowledge my presence…..

I cannot believe I have never been to this place before. I did a little bit of research on the park and discovered that it is an important site for the Duwamish tribe.

For generations, the Duwamish Tribe gathered at Licton Springs, together with their relatives by marriage, in the proper season for harvesting sacred Red Ochre pigment, necessary for spiritual celebration and renewal. Like the Duwamish Tribe, neighboring First Nations consider the sacred site le?qtid to be a tangible cultural property inherited from their male or female Duwamish Ancestors. As a result of inter-marriage, neighboring First Nations have a material interest in access to and preservation of the sacred site liquid.

For Chief Seattle’s Duwamish Tribe of Indians, Licton Springs is one of the last spiritual places remaining in our ?ál?altid (Ancestral Homeland). Licton Springs is located on the South Fork of tuw’Xú?bid (“Thornton Creek”).

AGAIN: GO SEE Licton Springs. I lived in Seattle for 15 years and I can’t believe I never really even heard of it. It’s a spectacular place that I can’t believe isn’t more of a ‘destination’.