Chinese Reconciliation Park
Located in Old Town Tacoma, on the saltwater waterfront, Chinese Reconciliation Park is a Chinese scholarís style garden and a memorial to the expulsion of Chinese citizens in Tacoma back in 1885. The park is at the southern end of the 1.5-mile Ruston Way waterfront along Commencement Bay. The park showcases Asian designs and artifacts, from a rock path to a traditional bridge, to the highlight of the Fuzhou Ting. The Fuzhou Ting was donated and shipped from Fuzhou, China in 2010. Other park amenities include a natural launch site for non-motorized watercraft, a natural wading area, a shower facility, picnic areas, benches and paved trails.
WillhiteWeb.com - Tacoma Parks & Recreation
1741 N Schuster Parkway Tacoma, WA 98403
History written in the park:
Anti-Chinese sentiment was fueled by a widespread economic depression in the 1870s that depleted the job market. Anxious to blame someone for their woes, unemployed and frustrated workers made Chinese immigrants scapegoats because of their race, culture, and willingness to work for lower wages. The Chinese became targets of violent rallies, riots, and local laws that limited their rights. National political pressure only encouraged the intolerance of the Chinese people as Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882. This was the first U.S. immigration law to single out a specific nationality for discriminatory treatment. Tacoma's own anti-Chinese sentiment boiled over in March 1884, as the townspeople demanded the City resolve "the Chinese Problem." They insisted that if economic conditions were to improve, "The Chinese Must Go!" On October 3, 1885, a committee of fifteen was appointed to notify the Chinese that they must leave Tacoma on or before the first of November. The committee included Mayor Jacob R. Weisbach, County Judge James Wickersham, Fire Chief Jacob Ralph, and other prominent businessman and city officials. Frightened by the threats, many Chinese left Tacoma before the deadline, but more than 200 others stayed. On November 3, 1885, an organized mob of armed men, led by the mayor of Tacoma, forcibly evicted the remaining Chinese from the city. They marched them eight miles to the Lake View train station where the Chinese waited all night in the rain without shelter. The next morning, armed guards loaded them onto trains bound for Portland. Kwok Sue, a Tacoma merchant, later testified: "The parties who notified us to go said if the Chinese did not leave, they were going to cut their throats, kill them and destroy their property."
Eastern beach in the park
SS Cape Intrepid used for both commercial or military use