Tukwila ( tuk-WIL-ə) is a suburban city in King County, Washington, United States, bordering on Seattle at its southern edge. The population was 19,107 at the 2010 census and an estimated 20,347 in 2019.
Tukwila is a community of communities, with residents of many diverse origins living in the city. A large commercial center draws workers and consumers to the city daily; industry thrives with the confluence of rivers, freeways, railroads, and Seattle–Tacoma International Airport.
The earliest people in Tukwila were the Duwamish, who made their homes along the Black and Duwamish rivers. The name "Tukwila" is the Chinook Jargon word for "nut" or "hazelnut", referring to the hazelnut trees that grew in the area. The Duwamish lived in cedar longhouses, hunted and fished, picked wild berries, and used the river for trade with neighboring peoples.
In 1853, the first white settler was Joseph Foster, a Canadian pioneer who had traveled to the Pacific Northwest from Wisconsin. Foster would become known as the "Father of Tukwila" and represented King County in the Washington Territorial Assembly for 22 years. Today, the site of Foster's home on the banks of the Duwamish River is part of Fort Dent Park, which also served as a military base during the 1850s Indian Wars. Foster's name is memorialized in the Foster neighborhood of Tukwila, where Foster High School is located.