McGraw Square was acquired by the City in 1911 "for a public square" and designated as a Landmark in 1985.  Since 2011, it has been managed and maintained by Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT).  For event permitting of McGraw Square, please contact SDOT at  or 206-684-5267.

McGraw Square is named for John H. McGraw (1850-1910), who came to Seattle in 1876, initially going into the hotel business but was later hired as 1 of 4 City policemen. He became City Marshall then Chief of Police in 1880, only to be elected Sheriff of King County 1882-1890. McGraw was elected the second Governor of the State of Washington and served from 1893-1897. (Edited from the files of Don Sherwood, 1916-1981, Park Historian.)