The Indian Shaker Church on the Tulalip Reservation was erected by church members in 1924 and is among the best preserved examples of Indian Shaker architecture, a tradition peculiar to the Pacific Northwest. The Indian Shaker movement is entirely unrelated to the more widely known Protestant monastic sect of the same name introduced to American by Mother Ann Lee in 1774, instead, the Shakerism displayed in this church was a Messianic and healing sect founded in 1881 by John Slocum, a member of the Squaxin band who lived on a homestead outlying Olympia. Shakerism spread to most of the reservations of Washington and Oregon and spilled over into southern British Columbia and northwestern California within several decades.
The Indian Shaker Church at Tulalip was one of the last to be built on Puget Sound in conformance with sect tradition. Tulalip Shakers acquired a parcel of land and dedicated their church in 1924, in the same year that all Native Americans born in the United States were admitted to full U.S. citizenship. The shaking sect combined Christian elements with native tradition.