McKinley History Project

Historic Tacoma is working on a historic building inventory of the McKinley neighborhood to learn about the places and people that make it unique.
Help us promote, conserve and enhance Tacoma's architectural character by joining our emailing list, making a donation, or volunteering.
Project Area

Project Area

While we are focusing our project on the McKinley Mixed-Use Center zone—which runs roughly along McKinley Avenue from McKinley Park to East 38th Street—we'd love to hear from you about any places in the wider McKinley neighborhood!

Whether you call it McKinley, Dometop, or the Eastside, McKinley is a unique neighborhood with wonderful parks, great food, and beautiful historic homes. Not to mention, McKinley Hill is also the highest point in the city of Tacoma and features some of the best veiws of Commencement Bay. As our city changes and grows, a historic building inventory will help us make thoughtful decisions about our built environment.

This inventory project is led by the City of Tacoma’s Historic Preservation Office in an effort to update the city’s inventory of historic and cultural resources. One goal of the inventory is to include thorough public outreach so that we better understand what is important to the community. This project reflects our dedication to equity and antiracism and the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented.

Support for this project is also provided by Tacoma Creates, the Washington State Department of Archaeology & Historic Preservation, and the National Park Service.

We want to hear from you about why you think McKinley is special and share your memories of this great neighborhood. Join us!

Here's how you can get involved:

Tell us why McKinley matters to you!+

If you live, work, play, or have memories in the McKinley neighborhood, we want to hear from you.

We want to hear the stories behind the places. Whether it's an old family story or a recent reminiscence, tell us about the places in McKinley matter to you, and most importantly, why they matter to you.


Attend our virtual workshops+

Join Historic Tacoma as we explore McKinley and learn about historic preservation.

Historic Tacoma will be hosting a series of virtual workshops to talk about the neighborhood and why historic preservation is important. The workshops are free and open to the public, and we welcome questions ahead of time! Just email us at

Virtual Workshop Schedule

  • February 26, 2021 - Project Kickoff and Virtual Tour with Pretty Gritty Tours
  • March 22, 2021 - How to do historical research, espeically in a pandemic!
  • April 2021 - What is a historic survey and why does it matter?
  • May 2021 - All the details on what it means to be a landmark.
  • June 2021 - Project wrap-up and overview of historic survey.

Share your photos!+

The Porter Apartment building at the corner of McKinley Ave and E 35th Street from the Tacoma-Pierce County Buildings Index.

    Have any historic photos, memorabilia, or documents related to the history of the McKinley neighborhood? We'd love for you to email them to us at

    Please be sure to include names of people and organizations to whom we should credit the photos and documents!