Join the Proctor District Association, Tacoma Historical Society, Tacoma Public Library, city partners, community sponsors, North End neighbors and others in the dedication and celebration of a historic landmark plaza remembering Allen Chase Mason. The grand opening ceremony will be held at 11:30 a.m. Sat., Dec. 6 at the plaza at the Wheelock Library, North 26th and Adams streets in Tacoma.
According to event organizers, Mason Plaza is a public urban space for all to enjoy and learn more about this visionary who shaped Tacoma’s history. A bronze life-sized statue of Mason welcomes visitors to gather on granite benches framed by six grand historic sandstone columns from the portico of Mason’s former 1890’s north-end mansion.
Mason advertised Tacoma’s strengths in East Coast newspapers through a dazzling illustration he called the Star of Destiny and which some say was the genesis of the City of Destiny slogan. A five-foot diameter bronze Star of Destiny is imbedded in the inlaid brick pedestrian plaza.
“The plaza serves as a tribute to Tacoma history and a permanent expression of the community’s commitment to art and culture,” says project manager Joe Quilici. “It creates a way of integrating Mason artifacts into a present day interpretative center and major focal point of countywide significance.”
Mason, an Illinois school teacher and chicken farmer, came to Tacoma in 1883 with $2.85 in his pocket. By the 1890’s his housing developments in Tacoma had turned him into a multi-millionaire. Along the way, he promoted Tacoma’s booming economy, diverse job prospects and superior quality of life. He gave Tacoma its first public library and developed a street car line connecting downtown Tacoma, the Proctor District and Point Defiance Park.
The $250,000 plaza project was supported by a $25,000 grant from the Pierce County Landmarks and Historic Preservation Commission, $10,000 from the Pierce County Council (District 4) and $1,000 from the Pierce County Arts Commission.
For more information, visit http://www.proctorbusinessdistrict.com .