Guests gather to view a photo of Pilchuck Julia during a ceremony at the landing named for her Tuesday afternoon in Snohomish. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Guests gather to view a photo of Pilchuck Julia during a ceremony at the landing named for her Tuesday afternoon in Snohomish. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Park honors Pilchuck Julia: ‘She’s been waiting for this day’

A Snohomish park has been named for the tribal fisherwoman who once lived nearby.

SNOHOMISH — Under her watchful gaze, members of the Tulalip Tribes gathered Tuesday to recognize Pilchuck Julia.

Her oversized portrait loomed large as they played drums and sang in a 20-acre park that has been dedicated to the memory of the Snohomish tribal elder who died nearly a century ago.

“She made a beautiful day for us today, and I’d like to thank her for that,” said Teri Gobin, chairwoman of the Tulalip Tribes.

Pilchuck Julia Landing, on the outskirts of Snohomish at 20 Lincoln Ave., includes a boat launch to the Snohomish River and a large grass field. Someday the field could become a grove with a trail that stretches to downtown Snohomish, but no plans have been set, said Linda Redmon, a Snohomish councilwoman.

A photo of Pilchuck Julia taken around 1910 by the Rigby Photo Shop. (Everett Public Library)

A photo of Pilchuck Julia taken around 1910 by the Rigby Photo Shop. (Everett Public Library)

A committee to name the park was formed a few years ago. After some research, the city decided to name the land after Pilchuck Julia, who was known for her ability to predict the weather. They started to work with the Tulalip Tribes, and settled on Pilchuck Julia Landing.

“To be able to (name) it the correct way, and the way that will last for generations, that is something to be really happy with,” Redmon said.

Not much is known about Pilchuck Julia’s early life, because records were not written down but passed through generations.

Pilchuck Julia married a man named Pilchuck Jack, a member of a band of the Snohomish Tribe. They lived in a village where the Snohomish and Pilchuck rivers met.

Tulalip tribal members open the naming ceremony of the Pilchuck Julia Landing in song Tuesday afternoon in Snohomish. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Tulalip tribal members open the naming ceremony of the Pilchuck Julia Landing in song Tuesday afternoon in Snohomish. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

It’s unclear if anyone knows what their names were in Lushootseed, the traditional language of certain tribes in the region. Settlers likely called them Jack and Julia, and Pilchuck could have referred to the place they lived.

The Snohomish Tribe became part of the Tulalip Tribes at the 1855 signing of the Point Elliot Treaty. It has been said that Pilchuck Julia attended the ceremony.

She reportedly died from smallpox in 1923 at her home in Snohomish. She would have been around 80 years old.

On Tuesday, Tulalip Tribes member Patti Gobin gathered with others to sing traditional songs and bless the land. She remembers her grandmother telling stories about Pilchuck Julia.

Natosha Gobin offers a prayer during the naming ceremony of Pilchuck Julia Landing Tuesday afternoon in Snohomish. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Natosha Gobin offers a prayer during the naming ceremony of Pilchuck Julia Landing Tuesday afternoon in Snohomish. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

“She said there was not a stronger woman than Pilchuck Julia,” Gobin said. “There wasn’t somebody that was as innovative as Pilchuck Julia during difficult times.”

Pilchuck Julia was known to catch fish from the same river that flows past the park, and sell it in town. Gobin is proud that the tribes and Pilchuck Julia are being honored in the place she once lived.

“She is here now, she is with us and amongst us,” Gobin said. “She’s been waiting for this day to be acknowledged as the first people of this land.”

Stephanie Davey: 425-339-3192; sdavey@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @stephrdavey.

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

Snohomish residents Barbara Bailey, right, and Beth Jarvis sit on a gate atop a levee on Bailey’s property on Monday, May 13, 2024, at Bailey Farm in Snohomish, Washington. Bailey is concerned the expansion of nearby Harvey Field Airport will lead to levee failures during future flood events due to a reduction of space for floodwater to safely go. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Harvey Field seeks to reroute runway in floodplain, faces new pushback

Snohomish farmers and neighbors worry the project will be disruptive and worsen flooding. Ownership advised people to “read the science.”

IAM District 751 machinists join the picket line to support Boeing firefighters during their lockout from the company on Thursday, May 16, 2024, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Amid lockout, Boeing, union firefighters return to bargaining table

The firefighters and the planemaker held limited negotiations this week: They plan to meet again Monday, but a lockout continues.

Lynnwood
Lynnwood woman sentenced for stabbing Bellingham woman while she slept

Johanna Paola Nonog, 23, was sentenced last week to nine years in prison for the July 2022 stabbing of a woman she’d recently met.

Granite Falls
Man presumed dead after fall into river near Granite Falls

Around 5 p.m. Sunday, the man fell off smooth rocks into the Stillaguamish River. Authorities searched for his body Monday.

Pilot found dead near Snoqualmie Pass after Arlington flight

Jerry Riedinger’s wife reported he never made it to his destination Sunday evening. Wreckage of his plane was found Monday afternoon.

Firefighters respond to a fire on Saturday morning in Lake Stevens. (Photo provided by Snohomish Regional Fire & Rescue)
1 woman dead in house fire east of Lake Stevens

Firefighters responded to find a house “fully engulfed in flames” in the 600 block of Carlson Road early Saturday.

YMCA swim instructor Olivia Beatty smiles as Claire Lawson, 4, successfully swims on her own to the wall during Swim-a-palooza, a free swim lesson session, at Mill Creek Family YMCA on Saturday, May 18, 2024 in Mill Creek, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Splish splash! YMCA hosts free swim lessons around Snohomish County

The Y is building a “whole community” of water safety. On Saturday, kids got to dip their toes in the water as the first step on that journey.

Bothell
2 injured in Bothell Everett Highway crash

The highway was briefly reduced to one northbound lane while police investigated the three-car crash Saturday afternoon.

Heavy traffic northbound on 1-5 in Everett, Washington on August 31, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
On I-5 in Everett, traffic nightmare is reminder we’re ‘very vulnerable’

After a police shooting shut down the freeway, commutes turned into all-night affairs. It was just a hint of what could be in a widespread disaster.

The Eternal Flame monument burns in the center of the Snohomish County Campus on Thursday, Nov. 3, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Elected officials to get 10% pay bump, or more, in Snohomish County

Sheriff Susanna Johnson will see the highest raise, because she was paid less than 10 of her own staff members.

Anthony Brock performs at Artisans PNW during the first day of the Fisherman’s Village Music Fest on Thursday, May 16, 2024 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
At downtown Everett musical festival: ‘Be weird and dance with us’

In its first night, Fisherman’s Village brought together people who “might not normally be in the same room together” — with big acts still to come.

Two troopers place a photo of slain Washington State Patrol trooper Chris Gadd outside District 7 Headquarters about twelve hours after Gadd was struck and killed on southbound I-5 about a mile from the headquarters on Saturday, March 2, 2024, in Marysville, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Judge reduces bail for driver accused of killing Marysville trooper

After hearing from Raul Benitez Santana’s family, a judge decreased bail to $100,000. A deputy prosecutor said he was “very disappointed.”

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.