5. Farmer's Pole, 1984

5. Farmer's Pole, 1984

James Bender carved the "Farmer's Pole" after working with architect Victor Steinbrueck on the design and concept.

Where Is It?

"Farmer's Pole" is located on the southeast end of Victor Steinbrueck Park, at Western Ave & Virginia St. It's the first carved pole you'll reach when walking from Pike Place Market.


Victor Steinbrueck Park, north of Pike Place Market
Western Ave & Virginia St
Seattle, WA 98121, USA

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About Farmer's Pole

The unconventional Farmer’s Pole was inspired by a tribute totem near Ketchican, Alaska that features Abraham Lincoln standing on top of an unadorned pole. Farmer’s Pole is 50 feet tall, tapered and uncarved except for an 8-foot farming couple standing back-to-back at the top. They both wear badges that read “Honored Farmer–1984,” similar to those presented in 1981 by Friends of the Market to honor long-time market farmers.

Victor Steinbrueck Statement

"The poles are a tribute to the cultural contribution and the heritage of our Native Americans as well as having an urban design and civic amenities association with the Pioneer Square totem pole at First Avenue and Yesler. They form a belvedere to look out at Puget Sound and the distant Olympic Mountains and frequent colorful sunsets beyond." ... "[Farmer's Pole is] a monument and acknowledgement of gratitude to the farm women and men who toil to bring the agricultural riches of our region to the people of Seattle." (Excerpts from hand-written document by Victor Steinbrueck to James Bender, dated 3/11/1984.)

Funding Source

Department of Parks and Recreation and the former Department of Community Development as part of a Federal Urban Renewal Project

Office of Arts & Culture | Seattle

Seattle was one of the first cities in the United States to adopt a percent-for-art ordinance in 1973. For 40 years, our public art program has been integrating artworks and the ideas of artists into a variety of public settings, advancing Seattle's reputation as a cultural center for innovation and creativity.

Directions to the NEXT STOP

Walk behind the "Farmer's Pole" towards Elliott Bay to see the "Untitled Fence."