As David and I prepare to move into the new place this weekend, it seems like a good time to point out that the house is technically not in Madrona, but in Leschi. Apparently Leschi is a bit tonier but Madrona’s where the fun is (cool restaurants, fun shopping, etc.). We’re right on the line– maybe we should call it Madschi? Maybe not.
The bigger correction, which is related, is that the eponymous Chief Leschi wasn’t a murderer. So says the Nisqually tribe, respected historians, and even a former Pierce county prosecutor. Looks like it was a pretty standard White Man Speaks with Forked Tongue affair 150 years back, as settlers and the government attempted to force native tribes onto reservations. Leschi became the tribes’ “war chief” and was convicted of murdering a militia soldier, despite evidence that he was not present at the ambush in question. Leschi became the first person sentenced to death by white justice in the Washington Territory. (Even if he was guilty, I think the settlers had it coming.)
Anyway, with the help of historians the Nisqually tribe is making an effort to formally clear the name of the Chief whose memory is still alive and well here in the Northwest. As a soon-to-be Leschi resident, I wish them all the best.