Uncover the launch pit's past Thursday at Milepost 31

Before Bertha's launch pit was a launch pit, it was home to the south-end of the viaduct. And before that? Well, more than a century ago it was a neighborhood. Our team of archaeologists  uncovered a lot of cool stuff there in spring 2010 as we prepared to replace the viaduct's southern mile.

Sometime around 1905, the neighborhood was abandoned, filled with dirt and turned into a rail yard. Fortunately, archaeologists knew that pieces of the area's history remained, including building foundations and discarded household materials like shoes, bottles, and glasses. They excavated to find those remains and use them to tell the story of the vanished neighborhood.

The longshoremen, saloon-keepers, chambermaids, transient workers and entrepreneurs of early waterfront Seattle are silent now. No historian wrote down their words, and no artist painted their portraits. But the story of their lives survived in the objects they left behind.

Join us for a talk about archaeology, a brief history of the viaduct replacement work site in SODO and Pioneer Square, and the role of archaeologists during construction. This is a chance to see some recovered historical items that provide a view into the area’s past.

6 to 6:30 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 7
Milepost 31
211 First Ave. S., Seattle
Admission is free.

After the talk, be sure to leave enough time to explore the rest of the First Thursday Art Walk in Pioneer Square. Milepost 31 is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and stays open until 8 p.m. on First Thursdays. 

Free parking is available for First Thursday art walk patrons in Pioneer Square. Please visit www.FirstThursdaySeattle.com for more information about participating garages.