Name for boat launch park revised to Pilchuck Julia Landing
SNOHOMISH — Pilchuck Julia Landing is the name proposed to go on the riverside boat launch site off of Lincoln Avenue.
Pilchuck Julia was the contemporary nickname given to a ancestral member of the Snohomish tribe whom the parks board wants to honor.
The board unanimously vetted the name last week. It came back for alterations after the Tulalip Tribes said the city should use all of her recognized name. The originally nominated name was Julia’s Landing.
The City Council will have the final say at its July 16 meeting.
It is Pilchuck Julia Landing versus “Pilchuck Julia’s” based on a convention set by Blackman Lake and Cady Landing, which was the city’s previous boat launch at Maple Avenue’s terminus named for town co-founder E. F. Cady.
The only real talking points on the name at last week’s park board meeting were how the city already has a Pilchuck Park and how the site is near the Pilchuck River. A suggestion considered at the meeting was to name it Julia’s Landing but use signs to describe Pilchuck Julia.
City officials readdressed the name after talking with the Tribes’ liaison on the choice to name it Julia’s Landing.
When the park is dedicated, the Tribes want to hold a ceremony in her honor, Councilwoman Linda Redmon said. The Tribes similarly held a ceremony that included traditional songs and tribe leaders’ speeches when signage at the Hibulb Lookout was dedicated on a piece of Everett’s peninsula in 2013.
“If our intent is to honor her and her memory,” Redmon said, it is better to “use the full name she chose to use.”
The Tribes anticipate digging deep into Pilchuck Julia’s history to write an authoritative landmark sign on her history.
It’s not clear-cut when Pilchuck Julia Jack was born. Her legend is that she was born in the 1840s and as a teenager witnessed the 1855 signing event for the Treaty at Point Elliott between numerous tribes and the federal government. The treaty deal set up today’s Indian reservations. Tulalip historians want to formally sift the facts from legend to settle her legacy once and for all.
Representatives from the Snohomish tribe were present at the treaty signing, according to the treaty itself.
Pilchuck Julia’s husband was nicknamed Pilchuck Jack, which is how she got her surname. Their descendants still reportedly live in the area.
The two gained the equivalence to celebrity status in Snohomish as King Jack and Princess Julia.
Both died from smallpox and today are buried at the Grand Army of the Republic cemetery in west Snohomish. The used to be buried in the old pioneer cemetery near Second Street and Pine Avenue until the federal government displaced and exhumed dozens of bodies from that cemetery in 1947 as part of carving the hill to extend Second Street to connect to U.S. 2, according to researchers.
The parks board last week also approved naming these sites:
• Whistle Stop, at 1119 Maple Ave. next to the Centennial Trail;
• Harryman’s Farm Park, at a site donated by the Harryman family a decade ago;
• Averill Field, at the former Hal Moe Pool site; and
• Homestead Park, for the unnamed acreage the city owns in west Snohomish.
Averill Field’s name would be returning to its original site. The city transferred the name to a field at Pilchuck Park in 2002 when the original Averill Field town baseball diamond was demolished.
Renaming the parks will cost an estimated $41,000 in work and materials to put up fresh signs.
Council’s vote on July 16 should end a two-and-a-half-year process on park names.
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