Tag Archives: Legacy

Where Did the Soul Go?

by Rayna Mathis


Seattle’s Central District (CD) has gone through drastic changes over the last 20 years. Many communities have called this historic neighborhood home: Jewish people, Japanese Americans, and African Americans. Long-time residents and displaced families whose histories go back generations will lament this sentiment. 

If you’ve been to the CD in the last month, you might have noticed an important piece of 23rd and Yesler missing — the Soul Pole. In the summer of 1969, as part of President Johnson’s Model Cities Program (which ended in 1974), the Soul Pole was carved in a month by five teen artists, aged 14–16: Brenda Davis, Larry Gordon, Gregory Jackson, Cindy Jones, and Gaylord Young and was led by Seattle Rotary Boys Club Art Director, Gregory X. The sculpture honors 400 years of African American history by using four figures to represent significant moments of the Black man’s experience from primitive, to slavery, to liberation.

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Honoring the Legacy and Love of Our Black Trans Women and Trans Women of Color

We celebrate and honor the legacy, labor, divinity, sacredness, and love of our Black trans women and femmes and trans Women of Color in community!

by Trans Women of Color Solidarity Network


Portrait of Jaelynn Scott, by Jiéyì 杰意 Ludden.

Jaelynn Scott

She/her pronouns

Jaelynn Scott, M.Div., is the executive director of Lavender Rights Project. Jaelynn has worked as a director of HR, operations, and education for nonprofits and religious organizations. She is an ordained minister and regularly preaches and facilitates workshops on justice and mindfulness. Jaelynn is passionate about trans liberation, sacred practices for self-care, decolonized labor practices, and mindfulness in the workplace. Jaelynn, we love you and celebrate you! Thank you for your loving leadership and cosmic commitment to Black trans liberation and healing for generations to come! 

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OPINION: The Legacy of Seattle Children’s: Khabir Rasaan

by Sakara Remmu


“We provide hope, care and cures to help every child live the healthiest and most fulfilling life possible.”Seattle Children’s Hospital mission statement

Every hospital, including Seattle Children’s, has one: a policy against obstruction of patient care.

Seventeen years ago, Children’s policy was a single page, with bullet points outlining violent and intimidating behavior against hospital employees by patients’ family members or friends.

The policy is a warning: our institution has the power to remove and ban you from this hospital if we feel your behavior interferes with our care. The document requires a signature of acknowledgement, which the hospital can use to invoke internal security or external police, child welfare, and the court system. The message was clear: you are here receiving life-saving — or not — care. On their terms.

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PHOTO ESSAY: Best of 2020 — Emerald Photographers Pick Their Favorites

The South Seattle Emerald asked our photojournalists to pick some of their favorite 2020 photos shot for Emerald stories. From protests to pandemic responses to celebrations-despite-it-all, the images show not only a difficult year but also one filled with resilience, strength, and solidarity. We are proud to call South Seattle our home and grateful to our talented photographers for helping us capture our community’s special history.

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Tribute to a Seattle Civil Rights Legacy: Judge Charles V. Johnson

by Judge Anita Crawford-Willis


The Honorable Charles V. Johnson was among the many civil rights leaders of our times whose path breaking journey ensured transformative change. He was an extraordinary eyewitness to history, determined to forge a new pathway for Washingtonians. Judge Johnson is distinguished by one transcendent theme: He was a servant leader with an overwhelming sense of duty to work for equality of opportunity and racial justice through the rule of law. 

Judge Johnson arrived in Seattle in 1954 to attend the University of Washington School of Law.  During an interview, he recalled there were just two additional Black students enrolled when he arrived. One of them dropped out after six weeks and the other shortly thereafter. As a result, Johnson was the only Black graduate in his class. Having grown up in the segregated South, and serving our country in a segregated army abroad, law school was the first time he would sit down across from whites to have a conversation, let alone discuss the law. 

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