Tumwater is a city in Thurston County, Washington, United States. It lies near where the Deschutes River enters Budd Inlet, the southernmost point of Puget Sound. The population was 12,698 at the 2000 census. Thurston County, which includes the cities of Lacey, Olympia and Tumwater, has a population of 224,100.
The name was changed to Tumwater borrowing from a Chinook Jargon phrase tumtum chuck meaning "waterfall" or "rapids" (literally "heartbeat water"). Tumwater was officially incorporated on November 12, 1875.
From 1896-2003, Tumwater was well known regionally as the home of the Olympia Brewing Company. The Olympia Brewing Company began producing beer in 1896 at a site along the Deschutes River and continued until Prohibition. After Prohibition ended, a new brewery was erected just upstream from the original site. This brewery was eventually purchased by SABMiller and closed on July 1, 2003.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 10.1 square miles (26.1 km²), of which, 9.9 square miles (25.8 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.3 km²) of it (1.29%) is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 12,698 people, 5,659 households, and 3,253 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,276.1 people per square mile (492.7/km²). There were 5,953 housing units at an average density of 598.2/sq mi (231.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 88.41% White, 1.39% African American, 1.24% Native American, 3.90% Asian, 0.36% Pacific Islander, 1.50% from other races, and 3.21% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.08% of the population.
There were 5,659 households out of which 28.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.5% were married couples living together, 12.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 42.5% were non-families. 33.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.20 and the average family size was 2.82.
In the city the population was spread out with 23.2% under the age of 18, 10.9% from 18 to 24, 29.5% from 25 to 44, 23.0% from 45 to 64, and 13.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 89.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.5 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $43,329, and the median income for a family was $54,156. Males had a median income of $41,778 versus $32,044 for females. The per capita income for the city was $25,080. About 4.3% of families and 8.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.5% of those under age 18 and 5.2% of those age 65 or over.