Fife, Washington

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Fife is a city in Pierce County, Washington, United States. The population was 4,784 at the 2000 census.



In 1940, it was described as " a valley crossroads in the midst of a thickly settled berry growing and truck-gardening district is represented by a string of markets, taverns, shops, and a large, balloon-roofed dance hall along the highway." The 1940 population was 135. (Washington - A guide to the Evergreen State, WPA American Guide Series, Washington State Historical Society, 1941). Fife was officially incorporated on February 11, 1957.

It is a small city located east of Tacoma and consists primarily of businesses such as car dealerships and other highwayside businesses. Fife Heights, located on a hill beyond the incorporated bounds of the city, is a primarily residential area.

Due to the increased traffic volume traveling from Puyallup and Tacoma, Fife felt the need to establish itself as autonomous community, not just as an intermediate area between Interstate 5 (I-5) and State Route 167.

Fife is named for William J. Fife, a prominent Tacoma lawyer, Yukon prospector, once head of the Washington National Guard, and a Lieutenant Colonel in the field during the Philippine Insurrection. [3]


Fife is located at 47°14′4″N 122°21′35″W / 47.23444°N 122.35972°W / 47.23444; -122.35972 (47.234439, -122.359690).[4]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.7 square miles (14.7 km²), of which, 5.6 square miles (14.4 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.2 km²) of it (1.59%) is water.

Fife is also a tideflat community, residing in the low, flat area extending from the Port of Tacoma. This means the water table occurs only 10–15 feet below ground in some parts. Consequently, during the day as the tide rises and falls in the Puget Sound, so do parts of land slightly rise and fall.

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