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Seattle is built on booms—logging, fishing, aerospace, and now tech. This anthology gathers essays, interviews, photography, and comix to reconstruct community hubs lost to growth. From the settlements of Native American tribes to the incubators of grunge, from a foxxxy cabaret to an Old Spaghetti Factory, Ghosts of Seattle Past provides an eyes-on-the-street view of a city in flux.

The Ghosts of Seattle Past anthology comes at a critical point: Seattle had the country’s steepest rent hikes in 2015. The city is becoming a national focal point for issues of development. Both recent transplants and the old guard are trying to figure out how to live in the new landscape. Through their warm, conversational, whip-smart voices, the city speaks not only to the current boom, but also to longer-brewing problems of segregation, queer erasure, and colonization. Tracing the issues across six hand-drawn maps, Seattle’s best-known artists (including Elissa Washuta, Kate Lebo, and Paul Constant) join community lynchpins (including Chief Seattle’s great-great-great-great grandson) in a dialogue as incisively political as it is richly human.


Anthology curator Jaimee Garbacik is a book editor, writer, artist, youth equity advocate, and the owner and founder of Footnote Editorial. She previously authored Gender and Sexuality for Beginners, currently on curricula at more than a dozen universities.


Josh Powell, artist behind the anthology’s hand-drawn maps, is the former director of all-ages youth-led music and arts organization The Vera Project and co-founder of Seattle nonprofit The Bikery. He currently works at Seattle’s largest environmental remediation firm.

Ghosts of Seattle Past

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