Downtown Auburn in 2018, seen from the train station
Downtown Auburn in 2018, seen from the train station's parking garage
Flag of Auburn
"More Than You Imagined"
Location of Auburn in King County
Location of Auburn in King County
Auburn is located in Washington (state)
Location in Washington
Auburn is located in the United States
Auburn (the United States)
Auburn is located in North America
Auburn (North America)
Coordinates: 47°18′8″N 122°12′53″W / 47.30222°N 122.21472°W / 47.30222; -122.21472
CountryUnited States
CountiesKing, Pierce
FoundedJune 13, 1891
 • TypeMayor–council
 • MayorNancy Backus
 • Total29.87 sq mi (77.35 km2)
 • Land29.58 sq mi (76.60 km2)
 • Water0.29 sq mi (0.75 km2)
82.62 ft (25 m)
 • Total87,256
 • Estimate 
 • RankUS: 409th
WA: 14th
 • Density2,754.30/sq mi (1,063.45/km2)
Time zoneUTC−8 (PST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−7 (PDT)
ZIP codes
98001, 98002, 98092, 98071
Area code253
FIPS code53-03180
GNIS feature ID1511974[4]

Auburn is a city in King County, Washington, United States (with a small portion crossing into neighboring Pierce County). The population was 87,256 at the 2020 Census.[2] Auburn is a suburb in the Seattle metropolitan area, and is currently ranked as the 14th largest city in the state of Washington.

Auburn is bordered by the cities of Federal Way, Pacific, and Algona to the west, Sumner to the south, Kent to the north, and unincorporated King County to the east. The Muckleshoot Indian Reservation lies to the south and southeast.[5]


Neely Mansion, spring of 2006
Neely Mansion, spring of 2006

Before the first non-indigenous settlers arrived in the Green River Valley in the 1850s, the area was home to the Muckleshoot people, who were temporarily driven out by Indian wars later that decade. Several settler families arrived in the 1860s, including Levi Ballard, who set up a homestead between the Green and White rivers.[6] Ballard filed for a plat to establish a town in February 1886, naming it Slaughter for an officer slain during the Indian wars in 1855.[7][8]

Slaughter was incorporated on June 13, 1891, but its name was changed two years later to Auburn on February 21, 1893, by an action of the state legislature. Newer residents had disliked the name and its connection to the word "slaughter", especially after the town's hotel was named the Slaughter House.[7][8] The name Auburn was chosen in honor of Auburn, New York, for the area's shared reliance on hops farming.[9]

The White and Green Rivers have been a major part of the history and culture of Auburn since the area was settled with multiple locations in the city being named after either of the two rivers. Frequent flooding from the rivers caused numerous problems for the people living in the community with one outcome being the creation of Mountain View Cemetery over on one of the hills overlooking the valley.[10] It was not until the completion of the Mud Mountain Dam and the Howard A. Hanson Dam, along the White River and Green River respectively, that the flooding would cease and allow the city to grow without the aforementioned hurdle impeding the growth.

In 1917 the city, in response to the growing of the Japanese community, donated some of the land in Pioneer Cemetery to the White River Buddhist Church. A little over ten years later, Rev. Giryo Takemura, minister of the church at the time, and his future son-in-law, Chiyokichi Natsuhara, raised money to replace the old wooden sticks and columns that had been in use as gravestones at the Cemetery with more durable concrete markers.[11] The interwar period saw several Japanese-American baseball teams from the area compete in the courier league with the White River All-Stars enjoying particularly large success winning four of the July 4th tournaments.[12][13] In 1930 a Japanese bath house was constructed outside of Neely Mansion by the then current tenants.[14]

The onset of the Second World War saw the Japanese-American community of Auburn become seen with largely unwarranted distrust by many of the white residents of Auburn. This, combined with a larger countrywide Japanese focused xenophobia, led to the city's Japanese-American population being relocated to internment camps. After the war, of about 300 Japanese families living in Auburn only around twenty five returned.[11]

In 2008, Auburn annexed the West Hill and Lea Hill neighborhoods of unincorporated King County, adding 15,000 residents and expanding its land area by 26 percent.[15][16]


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 29.89 square miles (77.41 km2), of which 29.62 square miles (76.72 km2) is land and 0.27 square miles (0.70 km2) is water.[17]

Two rivers, the White River and, to a greater extent, the Green River flow through Auburn.

Historically, the Stuck River ran through the settlement of Stuck, which is now a small pocket of unincorporated King County within southern Auburn. In 1906, the flow of the White River was diverted into the Stuck's channel near today's Game Farm Park.[18] References to the Stuck River still appear in some property legal descriptions and place names, e.g. Stuck River Drive, within Auburn, but today it is essentially indistinguishable from the southern White River.[19]


This section needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources in this section. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.Find sources: "Auburn, Washington" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (February 2021) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
Auburn, WA Neighborhood Map.png


Climate data for Auburn, Washington
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 64
Average high °F (°C) 47
Average low °F (°C) 35
Record low °F (°C) −10
Average precipitation inches (mm) 5.3


Historical population
2021 (est.)85,699[3]−1.8%
U.S. Decennial Census[21]
2020 Census[2]

2010 census

As of the census[22] of 2010, there were 70,180 people, 26,058 households, and 17,114 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,369.3 inhabitants per square mile (914.8/km2). There were 27,834 housing units at an average density of 939.7 per square mile (362.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 70.5% White, 4.9% African American, 2.3% Native American, 8.9% Asian, 1.6% Pacific Islander, 6.3% from other races, and 5.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino people of any race were 12.9% of the population.

There were 26,058 households, of which 36.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.7% were married couples living together, 13.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.9% had a male householder with no wife present, and 34.3% were non-families. 25.6% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.22.

The median age in the city was 34.4 years. 25.9% of residents were under the age of 18; 10.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 27.9% were from 25 to 44; 25.5% were from 45 to 64; and 10.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.4% male and 50.6% female.


According to the Uniform Crime Report statistics compiled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in 2020, there were 329 violent crimes and 3,516 property crimes per 100,000 residents. Of these, the violent crimes consisted of 9 murders, 38 forcible rapes, 122 robberies and 160 aggravated assaults, while 569 burglaries, 2,248 larceny-thefts, 680 motor vehicle thefts and 19 acts of arson defined the property offenses.[23]



This article needs to be updated. Please help update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information. (July 2020)

As of 2020, 68.9% of the population is in the labor force with a 3.7% unemployment rate.[24]

The Auburn Boeing Plant, opened in 1966, is the largest airplane parts plant in the world, with 2,100,000 square feet (200,000 m2) and 1.265 million parts being manufactured each year.[25] With over 5,000 employees, the Boeing plant is the third major employer in Auburn.[citation needed]

Auburn is the site for the Northwest headquarters of United States General Services Administration.

According to Auburn's 2020 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,[26] the top employers in the city are:

# Employer # of Employees
1 Boeing 3,790
2 Muckleshoot Tribal Enterprises 3,493
3 The Outlet Collection Seattle 3,000
4 Auburn School District 2,950
5 Green River Community College 1,980
6 Auburn Medical Center 1,778
7 Safeway Distribution Center 908
8 Zones, Inc. 413
9 Skills, Inc. 290
10 LMI Aerospace Inc. 210


The Outlet Collection Seattle, formerly SuperMall of the Great Northwest, is an outlet mall which opened in 1995.

Arts and culture

The White River Valley Museum's exhibits feature Auburn, from Native American history to the 1920s. They focus on the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, pioneer life, immigration from Europe and Japan, truck farming, railroading and the building of towns throughout the area. Visitors can visit a recreation of a pioneer cabin, climb aboard a Northern Pacific Railway caboose, and investigate a recreation of the shops in 1924 downtown Auburn.[27]

The White River Amphitheater is a 20,000-seat venue, located about 3 miles (4.8 kilometers) southeast of the city limits.

As part of the King County Library System, there is a 20,000-square-foot (1,900 m2)[28] facility built in 2000 and expanded in 2012 having replaced an earlier, nearby location. It is part of the Les Gove Park, a 20 acre community campus south of State Route 164 including the White River Valley Museum, a senior center, and other recreational services. Fourth of July and other celebrations such as Auburn Good Ol' Days are also held in Les Gove annually.[29]

Auburn is designated by the Veterans Day National Committee and the US Department of Veterans Affairs as a Regional Site for celebration of Veterans Day.


Emerald Downs

Emerald Downs is a 167-acre (0.68 km2) six-level stadium and thoroughbred racetrack. The racetrack is operated on land purchased by the Muckleshoot in 2002.[30]

Parks and recreation

Auburn has an extensive system of parks, open space and urban trails: 28 developed parks, over 23 mi (37 km) of trails (including Auburn's 4.5 mi (7.2 km) portion of the Inter-urban Trail for bikers, walkers, runners and skaters), and almost 247 acres (100 ha) of open space for passive and active recreation.


Presidential Elections Results[31]
Year Republican Democratic Third Parties
2020 39.00% 14,092 57.90% 20,919 3.10% 1,121

The city of Auburn is a mayor-council form of government meaning the mayor is a full-time, separately elected position. The current Mayor is Nancy Backus, who was first elected to the post in 2013 and re-elected in 2017 and 2021. She is the first woman to serve in the office since Auburn was incorporated in 1891.

The Auburn Police Department is located within the Justice Building, along with the Municipal Court and jail.[32]

Auburn City Hall, 2007
Auburn City Hall, 2007


Auburn Senior High, founded in 1903
Auburn Senior High, founded in 1903

Public schools are administered by the Auburn School District. The district is larger than the city itself, serving the neighboring towns of Algona and Pacific, as well as some unincorporated areas around Auburn and Kent.[33]

High schools

Elementary and middle schools

Private and alternative schools




Auburn station in downtown is a major hub for the Green River Valley.

Auburn has many large roads nearby and within city limits, including State Route 167 (commonly referred as the "Valley Freeway") and State Route 18. Auburn also has its own transit center, Auburn station in downtown, that serves as a major hub for southern King County. Sound Transit buses connect the Auburn Transit Center directly to Federal Way, Sumner, and Kent, while King County Metro buses connect it to Green River Community College, the Super Mall, and Auburn Way.

Sounder commuter trains travel from Auburn to Downtown Seattle in approximately 30 minutes, and to Lakewood station in less than 35 minutes.

Until 1987, Auburn was home to a steam locomotive roundhouse and diesel engine house of the Northern Pacific Railway, the BNSF Railway of today. BNSF maintains a rail yard and small car repair facility, along with maintenance-of-way facilities at the former NP yard.[35] The Auburn Municipal Airport serves the general aviation community.[36]

Notable people

This section needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources in this section. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.Find sources: "Auburn, Washington" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (March 2019) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

City landmarks

The City of Auburn has designated the following landmarks:

Landmark Built Listed Photo
Auburn Masonic Temple[57] 1923–24 2002
Auburn, WA - Masonic Temple 01.jpg
Auburn Post Office[57] 1937 2000
Auburn, WA - former post office 01A.jpg
Auburn Public Library[57] 1914 1995
Auburn, WA - Auburn Dance Center 02.jpg

Sister cities

Auburn has five sister cities:

The relationship with Tamba is commemorated with an annual student exchange program between the two cities and neighboring Kent.[58]


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  2. ^ a b c "2020 Census Redistricting Data (Public Law 94-171) Summary File". American FactFinder. United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  3. ^ a b "City and Town Population Totals: 2020-2021". United States Census Bureau. June 21, 2022. Retrieved June 21, 2022.
  4. ^ "Auburn". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey, United States Department of the Interior.
  5. ^ "Muckleshoot Area Vicinity Map". muckleshoot.nsn. Muckleshoot Tribe. Retrieved January 6, 2015.
  6. ^ "The town formerly known as Slaughter". Maple Valley Reporter. July 5, 2017. Retrieved March 31, 2019.
  7. ^ a b "Auburn, Washington, United States". Encyclopaedia Britannica. Retrieved March 31, 2019.
  8. ^ Wilma, David (October 17, 1999). "Slaughter is renamed Auburn on February 21, 1893". HistoryLink. Retrieved February 24, 2013.
  9. ^ "Mountain View Cemetery History - City of Auburn". Retrieved March 8, 2020.
  10. ^ a b "About the Auburn Pioneer Cemetery, Auburn, Washington". Retrieved March 8, 2020.
  11. ^ "White River All-Stars Baseball Team - May 1935". Retrieved March 8, 2020.
  12. ^ Mullan, Michael (1999). "Ethnicity and Sport: The Wapato Nippons and Pre-World War II Japanese American Baseball". Journal of Sport History. 26 (1): 97–100. JSTOR 43611719.
  13. ^ "Japanese Bathhouse Neely Mansion Association". Retrieved March 8, 2020.
  14. ^ Archbold, Mike (January 18, 2007). "Auburn might grow much larger". The News Tribune. p. B1. Archived from the original on January 23, 2007. Retrieved March 31, 2019.
  15. ^ Archbold, Mike (December 2, 2007). "Stakes high for Auburn in area census". The News Tribune. p. B1.
  16. ^ "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on January 12, 2012. Retrieved December 19, 2012.
  17. ^ "White River Valley Museum". Archived from the original on June 24, 2009. Retrieved May 2, 2010.
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  19. ^ "Monthly Averages for Seattle, WA". The Weather Channel. Archived from the original on November 6, 2007. Retrieved September 28, 2007.
  20. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2016.
  21. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 19, 2012.
  22. ^ "WASHINGTON - Offenses Known to Law Enforcement by City, 2020". Federal Bureau of Investigation. 2020. Retrieved May 13, 2022.
  23. ^ "Y-Charts: Auburn, WA Unemployment Rate". May 13, 2022.
  24. ^ "Boeing Frontiers Online Source". Retrieved February 24, 2013.
  25. ^ "2020 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report".
  26. ^ "White River Valley Museum website". Retrieved May 2, 2010.
  27. ^ "Auburn Library, King County Library System". December 8, 2016. Archived from the original on January 16, 2020. Retrieved January 24, 2022.
  28. ^ "Good Ol' Days returns to Auburn". Auburn Reporter. August 17, 2011. Retrieved February 17, 2021.
  29. ^ "Muckleshoot Tribe acquiring Emerald Downs". Auburn Reporter. November 13, 2014. Retrieved February 17, 2021.
  30. ^ King County Elections
  31. ^ "South Correctional Entity". South Correctional Entity. Retrieved February 17, 2021.
  32. ^ "About Us / Overview". Retrieved May 20, 2017.
  33. ^ a b "School Directory". Auburn School District. Retrieved February 17, 2021.
  34. ^ "Northern Santa Fe central roundhouse". Archived from the original on July 8, 2012. Retrieved May 2, 2010.
  35. ^ "Welcome to S50 Auburn Municipal Airport near Seattle and Tacoma Washington (WA)". Retrieved May 2, 2010.
  36. ^ "Harrison Maurus, Badass with a Barbell". December 18, 2017.
  37. ^ "Phil Fortunato's Biography". Vote Smart. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  38. ^ "Cam Gigandet". IMDb. Retrieved February 26, 2019.
  39. ^ Aftab, Kaleem (November 26, 2008). "Cam Gigandet". Interview Magazine. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  40. ^ "About Chris". Archived from the original on February 24, 2011. Retrieved September 12, 2013.
  41. ^ Raley, Dan; Reporter, P.-I. (May 31, 2006). "Where Are They Now? Ex-pitcher Kevin Hagen". Retrieved February 26, 2019.
  42. ^ Klaas, Mark (April 7, 2010). "Auburn's young Haugen vows to fight for own identity". Auburn Reporter. Retrieved March 3, 2019.
  43. ^ Stardew Valley developer is an Auburn native - KING 5 Evening, retrieved July 10, 2022, YouTube
  44. ^ "Gordon Hirabayashi portrait in the "Invader" 1935 Auburn High School Yearbook". Retrieved February 26, 2019.
  45. ^ "Chris Lukezic". Retrieved February 26, 2019.
  46. ^ Haglund, David (February 2, 2017). "Evan McMullin Is Trying to Save Democracy". The New Yorker. ISSN 0028-792X. Retrieved February 26, 2019.
  47. ^ "Sir Mix-A-Lot |". Retrieved March 3, 2019.
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  49. ^ "NBA Players: Blair Rasmussen Profile and Basic Stats". Retrieved February 26, 2019.
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  54. ^ "Q&A: Cartoonist grew up in Gig Harbor, lives in Auburn and likes unicorns". The News Tribune. Retrieved March 3, 2019.
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  56. ^ a b c "King County and Local Landmarks List". December 29, 2015. Archived from the original on April 9, 2016.
  57. ^ "Sister City Program". City of Auburn. Archived from the original on August 27, 2015. Retrieved July 28, 2015.