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Charles and Emma Frye arrived in Seattle in 1888. Throughout a 25-year period, they amassed an unrivaled collection (eventually more than 230 pieces) of fine art painted by both American and European artists, mostly from the 19th and 20th Centuries. A trust in Charles Frye's will made provisions for a free public art museum, and today anyone can view the collection at no charge. Located on First Hill, the Frye Art Museum also includes the Gallery Cafe. Free parking is also available across from the main entrance.
The exhibits at the Center for Wooden Boats are not hidden behind glass. Instead, the wooden boats that make up this museum are out on the water, waiting to be touched and boarded. More than 100 historical boats are docked here and you can climb aboard and learn all about their history from a well-informed staff and dedicated volunteers. Talk to craftspeople currently restoring many classic wooden boats. Ask questions. Who knows, you may want to volunteer yourself. Admission is free, and donations are accepted.
Come learn about the indigenous people – the Duwamish Tribe – that occupied Seattle thousands of years ago. Admission is free, so it is a great opportunity to educate yourself about those that came before. A small but beautiful museum, Duwamish Longhouse and Cultural Center has educational videos and interesting artifacts for visitors to examine. You may leave the experience with a heavy heart, but you will feel thankful for the experience.