Seattle Now & Then: The Arkona at First and Denny

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: In 1913, or near to it, an unnamed photographer recorded this view southeast across the Lower Queen Anne corner of Denny Way and First Avenue North. Out of frame to the left, the northeast corner of this intersection was home then for the Burdett greenhouse and gardens. By its own claim, it offered plants of all sorts, “the largest and most complete stock to choose from in the state.”   Courtesy, the Museum of North Idaho.
THEN: In 1913, or near to it, an unnamed photographer recorded this view southeast across the Lower Queen Anne corner of Denny Way and First Avenue North. Out of frame to the left, the northeast corner of this intersection was home then for the Burdett greenhouse and gardens. (We have include an advertisement for them below.)  By its own claim, Burdett offered plants of all sorts, “the largest and most complete stock to choose from in the state.” Courtesy, the Museum of North Idaho.
NOW: Jean discovered that the lower and larger panel of this correctly chosen window was stuck closed, so instead he extended his camera through a narrow opening to the side of the upper panel and recorded this view, which sees considerably farther south on First Avenue.  Thanks to archivist Julie Keressen at Seattle Municipal Archives for discovering that the part of Denny Way seen here was considerably widened to the south in the early 1920s.  A combination of that widening and Jean’s extended arm open up the view south on First Avenue and into Belltown.
NOW: Jean discovered that the lower and larger panel of this correctly chosen window was stuck closed, so instead he extended his camera through a narrow opening to the side of the upper panel and recorded this view, which sees considerably farther south on First Avenue. Thanks to archivist Julie Keressen at Seattle Municipal Archives for discovering that the part of Denny Way seen here was considerably widened to the south in the early 1920s. A combination of that widening and Jean’s extended arm open up the view south on First Avenue and into Belltown.

While Seattle was building long piers with landmark towers on the central waterfront and first staging Golden Potlatches, the week-long summer festivals that began in 1911, on city streets, an alert and now nameless photographer produced a collection of sharp negatives enamored with schooners, steamers and Potlatch parade floats.

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The window shot at the top, however, is unique for her or him.  From the northwest corner of First Ave. N. and Denny Way, the subject looks southeast from a fourth floor window – perhaps the photographer’s apartment.

This detail pulled from the 1912 Baist Real Estate Map has Denny Way running along the bottom.
This detail pulled from the 1912 Baist Real Estate Map has Denny Way running along the bottom.  The Regent Apartments are show  – although not named – near the map’s lower-left corner at the northwest corner of Denny Way and First Ave. North.  Not counting the fire station (far right, on a site now supporting the Space Needle), there are eleven brick buildings (the red ones) scattered among the wooden ones in these 21 lower Queen Anne blocks. [CLICK TO ENLARGE]

The Regent Apartments were built in 1908.  From the prospect, here at the top, one got an unimpeded view of the razing of Denny Hill for the Denny Regrade until 1910, when the Raymond Apartments, whose rear wall is seen here kitty-corner and beyond the billboards, opened its 37 two-room units to renters.  The Regent was considerably larger with 59 units.  These two apartment houses were part of the earliest brick reconstruction of this “North Seattle” neighborhood that had been swiftly built of wood during Seattle’s first boom decades of the 1880s and 1890s.

The Regent, here renamed the Wm. Daniels apartments, rises above a trolley turning south onto First Avenue from Denny Way.
The Raymond Apartments, here renamed the Wm. Daniels Apartments, rise above a trolley turning west  onto Denny Way from First Avenue.  The reader may decide if the couple, clutching their purses and packages and watching the trolley, are preparing to board it or waiting for it to pass by, allowing them then to cross Denny Way..   The Regent/Arkona Apartments are just off the photo’s border to the left, behind them.
With his back to the Arkona, Lawton Gowey recorded this look down First Avenue on November 2, 1968.  The date is penned on its slide, but not for another of Gowey's cityscapes, the one immediately below.  (It was unlike him not to write a date down.)  We can tell from the distant skyline that the snap below is later than the one above.
With his back to the Arkona, Lawton Gowey recorded this look down First Avenue on November 2, 1968. The date is penned on this slide’s cardboard frame, but not for another of Gowey’s Kodachrome cityscapes, the one immediately below. (It was unlike him not to write down a date.) We can tell from the distant skyline that the snap below is later than the one above.
Ivars sign here still holds to the north facade of the
Ivars sign here still holds to the north facade of the Raymond Apartments.  Included below with the Link named  “Sharred Walls” is a feature on the Raymond – seen from the front.
The sign to Ivar's Fish Bar on Denny Way. The variety of menus was something he introduced with his fire drive-in in a converted Capitol Hill gas station on Broadway Avenue at Thomas Street in the 1950s.
The sign to Ivar’s Fish Bar on Denny Way. The variety of menus was something he introduced in the 1950s with his first drive-in housed in a converted Capitol Hill gas station on Broadway Avenue at Thomas Street..

The Regent’s managers did not promote this view south into the business district but rather that to the west.  A Dec. 15, 1912, classified ad for the Regent reads, “Commanding a view of the Sound and being within easy walking distance of the city, or excellent car service, this building is exceptionally well located.  The apartments are first class and modern in every respect.  Three rooms at $15 and $20.  Four rooms, $27.50 and $30.”

The 25-year-old Regent
The 15-year-old Regent was sold to California investors, and pictured in the January 28, 1923 Sunday Times. [CLICK TO ENLARGE]

In 1925, after the apartments were sold to a San Francisco investor for “a consideration of $110,000,” the name was changed to the Arkona. This was short-lived.  After John and Winifred Paul purchased the Arkona Apartments in 1927 for $150,000, they whimsically changed its name to Pauleze. Winifred died there in 1932, but Paul continued living in and managing their apartment house until 1957, when he too died, but not the punning name.  It remained the Pauleze until the late 1970s, when, for reasons we have not found, the name Arkona Apartments was revived.

Jack Paul's obituary as is appeared in The Seattle Times for Dec. 6, 1957.
Jack Paul’s obituary as is appeared in The Seattle Times for Dec. 6, 1957.

In the mid-1980s, with the help of Dave Osterberg, a friend who was then the development manager for Environmental Works, acting as guide for the transfer, the collection of negatives of which this subject was one, “came home” to Seattle from the Museum of North Idaho.  With a donation to the museum from Ivar Haglund, the negatives were purchased for the University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections.

A page from The Seattle Times for March 10, 1910, which includes an advertisement for The Burdett Company nursery that was across First Ave. North from the Regent's front door.  The detail from the 1912  Baist Map printed above reveals that this business filled most of the block north to John Street.
A page from The Seattle Times for March 10, 1910, which includes an advertisement for The Burdett Company nursery that was directly across First Ave. North from the Regent’s front door. The detail from the 1912 Baist Map printed above reveals that this verdant concern  filled most of the block north to John Street. CLICK TO ENLARGE
An early 20th Century look up First North from Denny Way.  My notes advise "about 1903."  If so then still five years before the construction of the Regent/Ankona.  The long lot on the far right is home for the
An early 20th Century look up First North from Denny Way. My notes advise “about 1903.” If so then still five years before the construction of the Regent/Ankona. The long lot on the far right is home for the Burdett nursery.
Here too we look north on First Avenue North thru Denny Way.  The Ankona is on the left, and here too Lawton has not dated his slide - unless he has and I missed it.  (That seems more likely.)  Here the traffic is two way, but not so in the Gowey slide directly below.
Here too we look north on First Avenue North thru Denny Way. The Ankona is on the left, and here as well Lawton has not dated his slide – unless he has and I missed it. (That seems more likely.) Here the traffic is two way, but not so in the Gowey slide directly below.  Time has passed there. 
With the Ankona on the left and still looking north on one-way First Ave. North with traffic heading north in 1971,
With the Ankona on the left and still looking north on one-way First Ave. North with traffic heading only north in 1971,

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, dear Paul?  At first – and perhaps last – look Ron and I have found a dozen  links to past features, all from within the still brief life of this blog: a few years.   They are packed with Queen Anne – both upper and lower – history.

The first of these twelve includes brief illustrated essays on sever other Seattle apartment houses, including the Raymond, which is the pie-shaped brick apartment at the corner of Warren and First that partially blocks the view from our window above into both the regrade and the central business district.  Following the links I’ll hang a some more images from the neighborhood, either before climbing to nighty-bears, or tomorrow.   Meanwhile there is enough included in the dozen links below to keep one engaged for a long as it once upon a time took one to sit thru “Meet the Press.”

THEN:  Louis Rowe’s row of storefronts at the southwest corner of First Ave. (then still named Front Street) and Bell Street appear in both the 1884 Sanborn real estate map and the city’s 1884 birdseye sketch.  Most likely this view dates from 1888-89.  (Courtesy: Ron Edge)

From 1954

THEN: The Dog House at 714 Denny Way was strategically placed at the southern terminus for the Aurora Speedway when it was new in the mid-1930s.  (Photo courtesy of Washington State Archive, Bellevue Community College Branch.)

THEN: Before this the first shovel of the last of Denny Hill was ceremonially dropped to the conveyor belt at Battery Street, an “initial bite of 30,000 cubic yards of material” was carved from the cliff along the east side of 5th Avenue to make room for both the steam shovel and several moveable belts that extended like fingers across the hill.  It was here that they met the elevated and fixed last leg of the conveyor system that ran west on Battery Street to the waterfront.  (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archive)

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Seattle Now & Then: Salmon Bay

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THEN: Captioned Salmon Bay, 1887, this is most likely very near the eastern end of the bay where it was fed by Ross Creek, the Lake Union outlet. (Courtesy, Michael Maslan Vintage Posters and Photographs)
THEN: Captioned Salmon Bay, 1887, this is most likely very near the eastern end of the bay where it was fed by Ross Creek, the Lake Union outlet. (Courtesy, Michael Maslan Vintage Posters and Photographs)
NOW: Beginning in 1903 and continuing even after the 1917 opening of the Lake Washington Ship Canal, both Ross Creek and the Salmon Bay shoreline were extensively reshaped for commerce and recreation.
NOW: Beginning in 1903 and continuing even after the 1917 opening of the Lake Washington Ship Canal, both Ross Creek and the Salmon Bay shoreline were extensively reshaped for commerce and recreation.

This picturesque pioneer snapshot was copied from a family album filled with prints, interpreted with terse captions hand-written on their borders. It reads simply “Salmon Bay, 1887,” a date used on several other photographs protected within the album’s covers.  If correct, then this is a rare early photographic record of Salmon Bay.

Appearing in the same Lowman album, this may be the same sail boat, although this was is not dated.  Aftern knowning this image since Michael Maslan first showed it to me, I did not until this afternoon notice that it is a detail made - in part - from the print that follows.  The negative for both is of course wider, at least to the right.  Still not date, but the subject is identified.  (Courtesy Michael Maslan)
Appearing in the same Lowman album, this may be the same sail boat – named the Pauline –  although this print is not dated. After knowing this image since Michael Maslan first showed it to me more than a quarter-century ago, I did not, until this afternoon, notice that it is a detail made – in part – from the print that follows. The negative for both is of course wider, at least it is wider to the right. Still no date, but the subject is identified. (Courtesy Michael Maslan)

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To the inevitable “where on Salmon Bay?” there are two choices.  The forested hill across the waterway must be either Queen Anne or the part of the Magnolia headland above where the Salmon Bay channel begins out of Shilshole Bay – near Ray’s boathouse.  Both sites would have required James Lowman, the owner of the photo album and probably both the camera and the sailboat, to reach the bay by sailing from the Seattle waterfront around the Magnolia peninsula. The voyage may well have begun at Yesler’s Wharf, which Lowman managed for his uncle, Henry Yesler.

This boat is for rowing on - the album notes - "On the lake."  It does not tell us what lake, although it is almost certainly either Union or Washington.
This boat is for rowing on – the album notes – “On the lake.” It does not tell us what lake, although it is almost certainly either Union or Washington.

 Jean and I chose the Queen Anne site, largely on the evidence of the timber trestle that runs beside the distant shoreline.  It was also in 1887 that the Seattle Lake Shore and Eastern Railroad completed its line from the Seattle waterfront north through Interbay to Salmon Bay, and then east to Lake Union along Ross Creek, the lake’s outlet below the north end of Queen Anne Hill.  In 1887 there may have been some settlers’ docks beside Salmon Bay, but no extended trestles except this one.

Salmon Bay - and Magnolia - as the federal surveyors first drew it in the late 1850s.  Note where the bay is met by the creek near the right border.
Salmon Bay (although named Shilshole) – and Magnolia – as the federal surveyors first drew it in the late 1850s. Note where the bay is met by the creek near the number “13” close to the right border.  In this editing the borders for the first claims in Interbay and the future Ballard have been drawn in.
This helpful map drawn by the U.S. Dept of Commerce about a quarter-century ago, shows the shoreline of Salmon Bay before and after the filling of it behind the Chittenden Locks in 1916.  This is a detail from the larger map that also shows the changes for all of the canal and the lakes too.
This helpful map drawn by the U.S. Dept of Commerce about a quarter-century ago, shows the shoreline of Salmon Bay before and after the filling of it behind the Chittenden Locks in 1916. This is a detail from the larger map that also shows the changes for all of the canal and the lakes too.   CLICK IT!   Note the 8th Avenue railroad bridge  to the right of the shadowed crease in the map.
Looking west up the canal past an unidentified vessel to the railroad's 8th Avenue bridge, which was ordinarily open like the Great Northern bridge west of the Chittenden Locks.
Looking west up the canal past an unidentified vessel to the railroad’s 8th Avenue bridge, which was ordinarily open like the Great Northern bridge west of the Chittenden Locks.
Looking east at the same tug-guided vessel heading for the lakes.
Looking east at the same tug-guided vessel heading for the lakes.
Another look west along the completed canal with the 8th Ave. railroad bridge showing on the left and Ballard beyond it. (Courtesy, MOHAI)
Another look west along the completed canal with the 8th Ave. railroad bridge – here down – seen on the left and steaming Ballard beyond it.  The south entrance to the Fremont Bridge is far right. (Courtesy, MOHAI)
I confess to not having studied this charming waterway with the rigor required to confirm that it is what it claims to be: the outlet for Lake Union heading west to Ballard; that is Ross Creek.  The mill we see on the dim horizon is then one of Ballard's and the little bridge perhaps the first one built for the railroad (first the Seattle Lake Shore and Eastern) in 1887 before it was replaced ultimately with the 8th Ave. bascule.
I confess to not having studied this charming waterway with the rigor required to confirm that it is what it claims to be: the outlet for Lake Union heading west to Ballard; that is Ross Creek. The mill we see on the dim horizon is then one of Ballard’s and the little bridge perhaps the first one built for the railroad (first the Seattle Lake Shore and Eastern) in 1887 before it was replaced ultimately with the 8th Ave. bascule.
The first Army Corp decreed digging of the canal between Fremont and Ballard, and early, 1903.  The creek was "regularized" but the funding insufficient to do much more.  This scene like the one above it (we think) looks west.  (Courtesy, Army Corps of Engineers)
The first Army Corp decreed digging of the canal between Fremont and Ballard, and early, 1903. The creek was “regularized” but the funding insufficient to do much more. This scene like the one above it (we think) looks west. (Courtesy, Army Corps of Engineers)
The shaped ditch looking back at the still low Fremont Bridge with Lake Union dam just beyond, circa 1903.
The shaped ditch, looking back at the still low Fremont Bridge with the Lake Union dam just beyond it, circa 1903. (Courtesy, Army Corps of Engineers)
James Lowman in his "chamber of commerce prime."
James Lowman in his “chamber of commerce prime.”  (Courtesy, The Rainier Club)
Copied from the family album, the Lowman Mansion at the southeast corner of Boren Avenue and Marion Street in 1894. (Courtesy, Michael Maslan)
Copied from the family album, the Lowman Mansion at the southeast corner of Boren Avenue and Marion Street in 1894. (Courtesy, Michael Maslan)
The album's caption names the dogs on the Lowman's front porch but not the women.
The album’s caption names the dogs on the Lowman’s front porch but not the women.
Looking to the northeast towards the Lowman Home from the corner of Boren and Columbia in 1896.
Looking to the northeast towards the Lowman Home from the corner of Boren and Columbia in 1896.  (Courtesy – like all those form the Lowman Album – of Michael Maslan)
A page from the Lowman Family Album.
A page from the Lowman Family Album, FOLLOWED BY SIX MORE.
This illuminated tableau has some classical allusion that is, at least, lost on me, although it surely pleases me.
This illuminated tableau has some classical allusion that is, at least, lost on me, although it surely pleases me and, I suspect, you too.   Lowman was one of the founders of The Seattle Theatre.

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In 1946, after greeting his 89th birthday with a morning visit to his barber, James Lowman returned to his First Hill mansion, The Seattle Times reported, to spend “several hours . . . reminiscing over a volume containing pictures of Seattle’s pioneer residences.  In it is a picture of his home.”  Somewhere between “very likely” and “highly possible,” the album that Lowman lost himself in was the one uncovered by friend Michael Maslan, a collector and dealer in vintage photographs and posters.

Lowman ritually pouring tea for his wife.
Lowman ritually pouring tea for his wife.

In the early 1980s Mike shared the Lowman album with me for copying and study.  I have often used it in these pages.  Included are pictures of Mary Emery Lowman, whom James married two years after he, we assume, photographed this Salmon Bay scene.  Perhaps Mary is sitting in the sailboat and being courted.  She would have been 24 years old.  Married in 1889, they lived together for a half-century on First Hill, until Mary’s death in 1939.  Still living in his mansion, James died eight year later at age 90.

A friend, most likely, posing in costume and in the album.
A friend, most likely, posing in costume and in the album.
The unintended effects of a double exposure - in the album.  (Courtesy again of Michael Maslan)
The unintended effects of a double exposure – in the album. (Courtesy again of Michael Maslan)

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, Paul?

Jean I hear the pacing of soft pads with retracted claws signaling me to nighty-bears.   It is 3am, but Ron Edge will be up soon – most likely around 5am – and put up, I believe, no less than NINE relevant links.   Early Sunday afternoon I’ll return for proofreading and  with two features printed now long ago in the Times, and one of them also in the second Seattle Now and Then volume.  Both are short essays on two more of Lowman’s nature subjects – Lake Union shorelines – and like our feature at the top, both are dated from or in 1887.

THEN: A Seattle Street and Sewer Department photographer recorded this scene in front of the nearly new City-County Building in 1918.  The view looks west from 4th Avenue along a Jefferson Street vacated in this block except for the municipal trolley tracks.  (Photo courtesy Seattle Municipal Archive)

THEN: Looking east from the roof of the still standing testing lab, the Lock’s Administration Building (from which this photograph was borrowed) appears on the left, and the district engineer’s home, the Cavanaugh House (still standing) on the center horizon. (Photo courtesy Army Corps of Engineers at Chittenden Locks)

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THEN: From the Fremont Bridge, this subject looks northwest across the torrent that followed the washout of the Fremont Dam in the early afternoon of March 13, 1914.  Part of the Bryant Lumber and Shingle Mill appears left-of-center.  The north end of the Stone Way Trestle appears in the upper right corner. (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archives)

FREEMONT CAR BARN ADDENDUM, Aug. 7, 2014

THEN: One of a few photographs recording from different prospects the Fremont trolley car barn on Dec.11, 1936.  North 35th Street, on the right, was originally named Blewett for Edward and Carrie Blewett.  In 1888 the couple, fresh from Fremont, Nebraska, first named and promoted Fremont as a Seattle neighborhood. That year Fremont also got its lumber mill. (Courtesy, Lawton Gowey)
THEN: One of a few photographs recording from different prospects the Fremont trolley car barn on Dec.11, 1936. North 35th Street, on the right, was originally named Blewett for Edward and Carrie Blewett. In 1888 the couple, fresh from Fremont, Nebraska, first named and promoted Fremont as a Seattle neighborhood. That year Fremont also got its lumber mill. (Courtesy, Lawton Gowey)

In response to our last blog feature, the one about the Fremont Car Barn and the rest, an old friend and officer in these trenches, archivist Ernie Dornfield, answered our question regarding what was the use of those ghost-colored solid forms in the otherwise vacant lot between the house on the left of the subject and the car barn beyond both?   Here’s Ernie’s letter plus a “grab” from this computer’s screen of a City Archive photograph that shows one of those “gray things” being installed.   If you follow his advice and access the city clerk’s information service you will find many more and even much more beyond gray concretions.

THE DORNFIELD LETTER – please CLICK TO ENLARGE

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THE ARCHIVES’ ON LINE EXAMPLE – please CLICK

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Seattle Now & Then: The Fremont Trolley Barn

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THEN: One of a few photographs recording from different prospects the Fremont trolley car barn on Dec.11, 1936.  North 35th Street, on the right, was originally named Blewett for Edward and Carrie Blewett.  In 1888 the couple, fresh from Fremont, Nebraska, first named and promoted Fremont as a Seattle neighborhood. That year Fremont also got its lumber mill. (Courtesy, Lawton Gowey)
THEN: One of a few photographs recording from different prospects the Fremont trolley car barn on Dec.11, 1936. North 35th Street, on the right, was originally named Blewett for Edward and Carrie Blewett. In 1888 the couple, fresh from Fremont, Nebraska, first named and promoted Fremont as a Seattle neighborhood. That year Fremont also got its lumber mill. (Courtesy, Lawton Gowey)
NOW: For his “repeat” Jean stepped into the street to reveal, above the Fremont Fair booths at the scene’s center, the northeast corner of the surviving Fremont Car Barn. Since 2006, it has been a factory for Theo Chocolate, where the confectioner prepares “organic and fair-trade” sweets.
NOW: For his “repeat” Jean stepped into the street to reveal, above the Fremont Fair booths at the scene’s center, the northeast corner of the surviving Fremont Car Barn. Since 2006, it has been a factory for Theo Chocolate, where the confectioner prepares “organic and fair-trade” sweets.

The negative for this scene of industrial clutter is marked “Fremont Barn – N.E. Corner, Dec. 11, 1936.”  “Barn” is short for “trolley car barn,” that long and well-windowed brick structure that fills the horizon from N. 35th Street on the right to the interrupting house on the left.  It was photographed without credit, although most likely by an employee of Seattle’s municipal railways. From mid-block, the prospect looks west through the long block on Fremont’s 35th Street between Evanston and Phinney Avenues.

The featured photo was one of a few taken the December day centering on “barn.”  We will follow here with three more.

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The car barn across the canal with B.F.Day primary school on the left horizon.  (Courtesy, Lawton Gowey)
The car barn across the canal with B.F.Day primary school on the left horizon. (Courtesy, Lawton Gowey)

When it was completed in 1905, the ornate barn, along with the B.F. Day School nearby on Fremont Avenue, was one of the few brick structures in this mill town neighborhood. Inside the barn there were accommodations for the trainmen and also three bays for trolley car repairs.  Most of the homes built in the Fremont neighborhood, after 1888 when the lumber mill opened, were modest residences for workers.  In 1936 there were sixteen houses on this long block.  Now, it seems, only six have endured.

Trainmen posing in the open bays.
Trainmen posing in the open bays.

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As can be seen in the primary feature photo at the top, between the home and the barn there was room for both a yard of well-packed trollies, and closer to the photographer, an uncovered storage for stacks of what appear to me to be trolley-car-wide blocks of formed concrete. (Perhaps a reader will know and share their use.) With the help of a 1936 aerial photograph, we can see both the stacks of concrete and count a dozen rows of trollies resting on their tracks – spurs off N. 34th Street – in the yard between the barn and the stacks.  The twelve tracks were all five cars long, and so this parking lot could accommodate a maximum of 60 trolley cars tightly fit like these.

A detail from the 1936 aerial coverage of Seattle.  The trolley barn is far left at the corner of Phinney Ave. N. and N. 34th Street (at the bottom of the detail) with Evanston Ave. N., far right.  The house with its northwest corner showing in the feature photograph, is mid-block on the south side of N. 35th Street between Evanston and Phinney.  Between it and the rows of parked trollies the scattering of white forms - the same as those at the top - appear.  (Courtesy, Ron Edge)
A detail from the 1936 aerial coverage of Seattle. The trolley barn is far left at the corner of Phinney Ave. N. and N. 34th Street (at the bottom of the detail) with Evanston Ave. N., far right. The house, with its northwest corner showing in the feature photograph, is mid-block on the south side of N. 35th Street between Evanston and Phinney. Between it and the rows of parked trollies, the scattering of white forms – the same as those at the top – appear. (Courtesy, Ron Edge)
A similar detail for comparison, this one of the 1929 aerial survey.  (Courtesy, Seattle Engineering Dept. and Ron Edge)
A similar detail for comparison, this one of the 1929 aerial survey. (Courtesy, Seattle Engineering Dept. and Ron Edge)
Also for comparison, the featured photograph from 1936 set beside a detail from the 1912 Baist Real Estate Map.  The trolley is aglow in red.
Also for comparison, the featured photograph from 1936 set beside a detail from the 1912 Baist Real Estate Map. The trolley is aglow in red.

In 1936 the municipal system ran 410 often-dilapidated electric trolleys over its worn 224 miles of tracks.  Leslie Blanchard, Seattle’s trolley historian, described 1936 as “the beginning of one of the most violent and spectacular political free-for-alls ever witnessed in the city of Seattle.”  The fight was over whether to keep to the tracks and fix-up the system or convert it entirely to rubber, with busses and trackless trollies.  Of course, the latter won, and between 1940 and 1942 the tracks were pulled up and the trollies scrapped.  The Fremont Barn was then purchased by the army for wartime storage.

The parks cars were hosed from towers.
The parks cars were hosed from towers.

Friday the eleventh of December 1936 is well remembered on both the sentimental and scandalous sides of world history. While the photographer for this Fremont scene was, perhaps, having breakfast, His Royal Highness, the Duke of Windsor, explained to the British Empire by radio from Windsor Castle, that the burden of being king was a “heavy responsibility too great to bear without the help and support of the woman I love.”  The trouble, of course, was that “that American woman,” Mrs. Wallace Simpson, was already married.

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, Paul?

JEAN, as our readers may suspect, we often return to Fremont.  Still this week for Ron “EDGE-LINKS” we will restrain ourselves and include only a half-dozen or so.  In this conspiracy, for reasons we will make clear below, we have an eye out for the blog you did years ago recording (with whatever Nikon you had at the time)  one of the Fremont Solstice Day parades.   We will not fail in this.  In our several years of producing dorpatsherrardlomont it has been easily the most viewed – or goggled – post we have put up.  This shaking of hits has more to do with hirsute than heritage  Following the links we will chain a few Fremont strays to this barn.  First, the reader is encourage to click on the seven pictured links below.  They all include Fremont features and more.   Of the seven we have put at the bottom the recent feature on they day the Fremont Dam broke in 1914.

THEN: The rear end of the derailed trolley on N. 35th Street appears right-of-center a few feet east of Albion Place N. and the curved track from which the unrestrained car jumped on the morning of August 21, 1903. (Courtesy, Fremont Historical Society)

Built for the manufacture of a fantastic engine that did not make it beyond its model, the Fremont factory’s second owner, Carlos Flohr, used it to build vacuum chambers for protecting telescope lenses.  Thirty feet across and made from stainless steel the lens holders were often mistaken for flying saucers.  (photo courtesy Kvichak marine Industries.)

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THEN: From the Fremont Bridge, this subject looks northwest across the torrent that followed the washout of the Fremont Dam in the early afternoon of March 13, 1914.  Part of the Bryant Lumber and Shingle Mill appears left-of-center.  The north end of the Stone Way Trestle appears in the upper right corner. (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archives)

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The Fremont Car Barn on Sept. 23, 1919.  Over the bays the private company name has been replaced with the public name.  (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archive)
The Fremont Car Barn on Sept. 23, 1919. Over the bays the private company name has been replaced with the public name. (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archive)
Lawton Gowey's May 27, 1968 recording of the barn when it was still used for storage.
Lawton Gowey’s May 27, 1968 recording of the barn when it was still used for storage.
The barn during a recent Fremont Fair.  I recorded this but have lost the year - for now.
The barn during a recent Fremont Fair. I recorded this but have lost the year – for now.
The text the hung from the oldest of the three photos above with its printing in The Seattle Times Pacific Magazine for January 31, 1988.
The text the hung from the oldest of the three photos above with its printing in The Seattle Times Pacific Magazine for January 31, 1988.

 

Seattle Now & Then: When the Circus Came to Town

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: In the first years of the twentieth century, visiting circuses most often used these future Seattle Center acres to raise their big tops.  After 1911 the favored circus site was moved to the then freshly-cleared Denny Regrade neighborhood (Courtesy, Mike Cirelli)
THEN: In the first years of the twentieth century, visiting circuses most often used these future Seattle Center acres to raise their big tops. After 1911 the favored circus site was moved to the then freshly-cleared Denny Regrade neighborhood (Courtesy, Mike Cirelli)
NOW: In a service “pit” west of the north bleachers of the High School Memorial Stadium, Jean stands at least near the prospect of the historical photographer
NOW: In a service “pit” west of the north bleachers of the High School Memorial Stadium, Jean stands at least near the prospect of the historical photographer

After calls for help and hours of research on line and off, this subject still puzzles me.  The prospect is easy enough to describe, and I soon will.  Rather it is the subject: seven women sitting on handsome horses who have been trained to stay balanced on those odd pedestals. Who are they – the women and the horses?  That the riders are dressed up in the style of the time – ca. 1910 – we can corroborate by comparing them to the tiny pedestrians, far left, walking west beside Republican Street. They are draped the same.

The Roslyn Hotel, 1930, southeast corner of 5th Ave. and Republican Street. (Courtesy, Seattle Times)
The Roslyn Hotel, 1930, southeast corner of 5th Ave. and Republican Street. (Courtesy, Seattle Times)
The first Seattle Times listed classified for the Roslyn Hotel,
The first Seattle Times listed classified for the Roslyn Hotel, ;Feb. 3, 1909.
Another Times classified for the Roslyn Hotel, this one from Oct. 17, 1927, indicates that in the eighteen years that separates them inflation has, it seems, little effect.  In two more years with the Great Depression, lodgings at the hotel may well have depressed as well.
Another Times classified for the Roslyn Hotel, this one from Oct. 17, 1927, indicates that in the eighteen years that separates them inflation has, it seems, had little effect. In two more years with the Great Depression, week-long lodgings at the hotel may well have depressed as well.

This prospect can be figured within a half-block.  Looking east, Capitol Hill is on the horizon, and the three-story structure above the posing line of equestriennes is the Roslyn Hotel at the southeast corner of Republican and Fifth Avenue.  A Roslyn classified first appeared in The Times for Feb. 3, 1909, promising “elegant furnished rooms, electric lights, steam heat, hot and cold water in every room, absolutely the best in Seattle: rates $3 to $5 dollars per week; only 50 cents extra for two persons in the same room.”

A Seattle Times clip from March 1, 1932.
A Seattle Times clip from March 1, 1932.

The hotel’s sign is centered along its rooftop cornice, just above rider number two – from the left – one of the three riders in white and mounted on dark horses.  A friend, the writer-collector Stephan Lundgren, first alerted me to the “gray scale rhythm” of this tableau. It alternates women in white on dark mounts with women in black on white ones (in black and white photography). Lundgren concludes, “That’s not random, those are costumes.”  The novelist is pleased that the one dappled steed, third from the left, syncopates the otherwise regular rhythm of the line.

Getting situated, the Troy Laundry, far left, was near the northwest corner of 4th Ave. N. and Republican Street.  So the unnamed circus big tops are between Republican and Mercer Streets and at least west of 4th Avenue.  (Courtesy, Lawton Gowey)
Getting situated, the Troy Laundry, far left, was near the northwest corner of 4th Ave. N. and Republican Street. So the unnamed circus big tops are between Republican and Mercer Streets and at least west of 4th Avenue. (Courtesy, Lawton Gowey)
Looking west on Republican Street from near Hob Hill Avenue.  The two story frame building top-center, sat at the northwest corner of 3rd Ave. N. and Republican.  We have dated this too, circa 1912.   The Photographer was Max Loudon.
Looking west on Republican Street from near Hob Hill Avenue. The two story frame building top-center, sat at the northwest corner of 3rd Ave. N. and Republican. We have dated this too, circa 1912. The Photographer was Max Loudon.
Looking north from what is now the northeast corner of the Seattle Center Buildling (aka Food Circus or Armory), so Nob Hill Ave. is on the right and Third Ave. N. on the left.   This is another unidentified circus at the "old grounds" on the future Seattle Center.
Looking north from what is now the northeast corner of the Seattle Center Building (aka Food Circus or Armory), so Nob Hill Ave. is on the right and Third Ave. N. on the left. This is another unidentified circus at the “old grounds” on the future Seattle Center.
Years later, looking north on 3rd Ave. N. from its southeast corner with Harrison Street, and showing the commercial box, again, far left, at the northwest corner of 3rd and Republican.  The public works photo was recorded on Jan. 9, 1928 as early evidence of work on the new Civic Auditorium.  Some of the same homes on the north side of Mercer Street, included in the subject above this one, appear here as well.  (Courtesy, Municipal Archives.)
Years later, looking north on 3rd Ave. N. from its southeast corner with Harrison Street, and showing the commercial box, again, far left, at the northwest corner of 3rd and Republican. This public works photo was recorded on Jan. 9, 1928 as early evidence of work on the new Civic Auditorium, far-right. Some of the same homes on the north side of Mercer Street, included in the subject above this one, appear here as well. (Courtesy, Municipal Archives.)

The pedestrians, far left, in the featured photograph at the top, are almost certainly either headed for a circus or leaving one.  But which circus and when?  Two experts (and past subjects of this feature) might have helped, but both died years ago.  Michael Sporrer knew circus history hereabouts in great detail, and it was the historian Mike Cirelli who first shared this photograph with me.  At that time, without much study, Cirelli knew where it was but not yet, very well, who or what it was.

Two from The Times on the Norris and Rowe circus during their May, 1909 visit to the "old grounds."
Two from The Times on the Norris and Rowe circus during their May, 1909 visit to the “old grounds.”

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After studying the Seattle Times for the years 1909 thru 1913 – I used The Seattle Public Library’s access to the newspaper’s archive – I conclude that in those years there were three “big top” circuses that set up their train loads of animals, performers, canvas, and feed.  The biggest, Barnum and Bailey, “The Greatest Show on Earth,” performed on this site in 1910, 1912 and 1914.  The other two were the Sells-Floto Circus, last here in 1913 for its fourteenth annual Seattle engagement, and the Norris and Rowe Circus, which last performed on these grounds in 1909.

From The Seattle Times, May 29, 1910
From The Seattle Times, May 29, 1910
A Seattle Times clip on the June 1, 1913 visit of the Sells-Floto Circus to Seattle.
A Seattle Times clip on the June 1, 1913 visit of the Sells-Floto Circus to Seattle.
The Seattle Times clip dated May 22, 1909.
The Seattle Times clip dated May 22, 1909.

Although the smallest of the three, Norris and Rowe came on two trains to these “old circus grounds at Fourth Ave. and Republican Street” with “herds of elephants, camels, and llamas, two rings and an elevated stage, one four-mile hippodrome track, acres of tents and seats for all.”  In 1909 the trains also transported 600 persons and 500 ponies and horses, including, perhaps, these fourteen.

A Times feature on the Ringling Brothers Circus for their visit in   .  This circus survived.  I remember it visiting Spokane in the 1940s.
A Times feature on the Ringling Brothers Circus for their visit in 1912 . This circus survived. I remember it visiting Spokane in the 1940s with its “freak show,” “menageries of wild and exotic animals,” three rings of performance, and the clowns, certainly .

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, Paul?  We love to answer “yes” Jean.  Ron’s links to other relevant features will go up first.   Since we did that Golden Anniversary reporting on Seattle Center in 2012 we are well stocked with features from ground-sixty-two, but will only feature two of the twenty-plus “Fair and Festival” offerings from 2012.  One could key-word the others.   We have included here four other features that relate – two of them about circuses.

[A Prompt Reminder: The next SIX photographs are LINKS TO DISCOVERIES, if you TAP THEM.]

 MORE ABOUT HORSES

An encore for one of the 498 Kodachrome slide by Horace Sykes that we ran one-a-day until we reached 498 (or near it) when we decided to stop short of 500, giving us an opportunity later to return.   Here Horace is somewhere in the Palouse in the 1940s, most likely.
An encore for one of the Kodachrome slide by Horace Sykes that we ran one-a-day until we reached 498 (or near it) when we decided to stop short of 500, giving us an opportunity later to return. Here Horace is somewhere in the Palouse in the 1940s, most likely.
Still in the Palouse, here for the 1909 horseshow on the main street of Waitsburg.  Compliments of the local historical society, Jean and I used this in our book of a few years back, "Washington Then and Now."  Below is Jean's repeat.   For the fuller story, please consult the book itself.
Still in the Palouse, here for the 1909 horseshow on the main street of Waitsburg. Compliments of the local historical society, Jean and I used this in our book of a few years back, “Washington Then and Now.” Below is Jean’s repeat. For the fuller story, please consult the book itself.

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h-Brown_-Indian-Horse-Signs-FenceWEB

A motorcar saved by horses.  This, I believe, is a popular MOHAI print and the subject is somewhere on the road to Stevens Pass still years before it reached the pass.
A motorcar saved by horses. This, I believe (or imagine), is a popular MOHAI print and the subject is somewhere on the road to Stevens Pass still years before it reached the pass.
The photo above was mailed to me in 1991 with the letter attached below.
The photo above was mailed to me in 1991 with the letter attached below.

h-Fire-wagon-mock-horse-LETTERWEb

From the Lowman Album (Courtesy of Mike Maslan) used here many times before, an evocative look into a tranquil equestrian scene, and a fitting illustration for the clipping printed below.
From the Lowman Album (Courtesy of Mike Maslan) used here many times before, an evocative look into a tranquil equestrian scene, with dog, and a fitting illustration for the clipping printed below.  CLICK BOTH TO ENLARGE
Most like another EDGE CLIPPING, this instruction on how to handle a horse was printed first in the Puget Sound Dispatch for December 18, 1871.  CLICK TO ENLARGE
Most like another EDGE CLIPPING, this instruction on how to handle a horse was printed first in the Puget Sound Dispatch for December 18, 1871. CLICK TO ENLARGE

 

In the rich beastiary of comparing individuals to animals they may resemble, I am often compared to a bear and sometimes to a Neandrethal.  The Swedish artist Charlotte Hellekant is one of my favorite contraltos and also, surely, in this like a very fine horse.
In the rich bestiary of comparing individuals to animals they may resemble, I am often compared to a bear and sometimes to a Neandrethal. I look up to Jean less as an animal than as a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. The Swedish artist Charlotte Hellekant is one of my favorite contraltos and also, surely, a very fine horse.
A mountain that to some resembles a horse, a white one.
A mountain that to some resembles a horse, a white one.
HIS MARK
HIS MARK & MOTO

Seattle Now & Then: The “Finest Fruit”

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: Local candy-maker A.W. Piper was celebrated here for his crème cakes and wedding cakes and also his cartoons.  This sketch is of the 1882 lynching from the Maple trees beside Henry and Sara Yesler’s home on James Street.  Piper’s bakery was nearby (Courtesy, Ron Edge)
THEN: Local candy-maker A.W. Piper was celebrated here for his crème cakes and wedding cakes and also his cartoons. This sketch is of the 1882 lynching from the Maple trees beside Henry and Sara Yesler’s home on James Street. Piper’s bakery was nearby (Courtesy, MOHAI)
NOW: Jean took his repeats looking across James Street from both the open roof of the “Sinking Ship Garage” and from one of its screen-protected windows.  Although somewhat high, we chose the former
NOW: Jean took his repeats looking across James Street from both the open roof of the “Sinking Ship Garage” and from one of its screen-protected windows. Although somewhat high, we chose the former

If you are inclined to write a history of Seattle then you must include the three bodies hanging here between two of Henry and Sara Yesler’s maples on the early afternoon of January 18, 1882. The trees were planted in 1859; and they appear first as saplings in the earliest extant photo of Seattle, which was recorded that year. By 1882, the shade trees were stout enough to lynch James Sullivan and William Howard from a stanchion prepared for them between two of the Maples.

Yesler's home at the center with James Street to the right of it, typically dated 1860.
Yesler’s home at the center with James Street to the right of it, typically dated 1860.  The forest at the top encroaches on 5th Avenue.
Months after the lynching Henry and Sara Yesler pose in front of the home at the northeast corner of Front (First Ave.) and James Street on July 4, 1883.  The hanging trees are on the right.
A year and a half  after the lynching Henry and Sara Yesler pose in front of their home at the northeast corner of Front (First Ave.) and James Street on July 4, 1883. The hanging trees are on the right.  [Courtesy;, Northwest Collection, U.W. Libraries.)
Henry liked to whittle.
Henry liked to whittle.

As ordered by the judge, the accused couple expected to be returned to jail when their preliminary trail in Yesler’s Hall at First Ave. and Cherry Street was completed. Instead the vigilantes in attendance covered Territorial Supreme Court Judge Roger Sherman Green with a hood, bound the guards, and dragged like the devil the doomed couple up the alley to James Street. There the leafless maples suddenly exposed their terrifying landscape to Sullivan and Howard. Soon after being violently pulled from court – in a few pounding heart beats – these two prime suspects of the daylight killing the day before of a young clerk named George B. Reynolds, were lifeless and their swinging corpses played with.

A map of Seattle in 1882 idealized by it's real estate.
A map of Seattle in 1882 idealized by it’s real estate. (CLICK to ENLARGE)
Watklin's 1882 panorama of Seattle from Beacon Hill, as it is framed and explained on a page of Prosch's picture album of pioneer Seattle preserved in the University of Washington's Northwest Collection.
Watklin’s 1882 panorama of Seattle from Beacon Hill, as it is framed and explained on a page of Prosch’s picture album of pioneer Seattle preserved in the University of Washington’s Northwest Collection.   Below is a detail pulled from this pan, which includes a fat red arrow indicating the location of the 1882 lynching.

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During his 1882 visit to Seattle, Watkins also used the King Street Coal Wharf to record a panorama of what was by then the largest city in Washington Territory.  In this one of the panels from his pan, the location of lynching is
During his 1882 visit to Seattle, Watkins also used the King Street Coal Wharf to record a panorama of what was by then the largest city in Washington Territory. In this one of the panels from his pan, the location of lynching is below the top of the pile driver stationed right-of-center.  The entire pan is printed next.
Most - perhaps all - of Watkin's 1882 pan of Seattle and its waterfront, taken from the King Street Coal Wharf.
Most – perhaps all – of Watkin’s 1882 pan of Seattle and its waterfront, taken from the King Street Coal Wharf. [CLICK TO ENLARGE]
Watkins was visiting from California.  Peterson, the photographer of this look up the waterfront, also from the King Street coal wharf, had a studio in Seattle.  Most of its was portrait work, but his art for cityscape was hereabouts the best of the time.   This is tentatively dated ca. 1882.  The wharf building commotion in the Watkin's pan has as yet not begun.
Watkins was visiting from California. Peterson, the photographer of this look up the waterfront, also from the King Street coal wharf, had a studio in Seattle. Most of its was portrait work, but his art for cityscape was hereabouts the best of the time. This is tentatively dated ca. 1882. The wharf building commotion in the Watkin’s pan has as yet not begun. (Click to ENLARGE)

In a few minutes more, the by now hungry mob pulled from jail a third suspect, a “loafer” named Benjamin Paynes, who was accused of shooting a popular policeman named David Sires weeks before. For a while the hanging bodies of the three were raised and lowered over and over and in time to the mob’s chanting, “Heave Ho! Heave Ho!” Children who had climbed the trees to cut pieces of rope from the cooling bodies tied them to their suspenders or, for the girls, to the pigtails of their braided hair. It was, we are told, for “show and tell” in school.

In July, 1886 the Yesler's moved up James Street to their mansion facing Third Avenue, a sided at the corner with Jefferson by an orchard large enough for lots of apple sauce and branches enough for crimes and punishments, although none were used so.  Sara died in 1887 and Henry in 1892.
In July, 1886 the Yesler’s moved up James Street to their mansion facing Third Avenue.  It was sided at the corner with Jefferson by an orchard large enough for lots of apple sauce and branches for crimes and punishments, although none were used so. Sara died in 1887 and Henry in 1892.

Although there were several photographers in town, none of them took the opportunity to record – or expose – a lynching. Who would want such a photograph? Judging from the local popularity of these killings of accused killers, probably plenty. A few weeks following the stringing, Henry Yesler was quoted in Harpers Weekly, “That was the first fruit them trees ever bore, but it was the finest.” It was Seattle’s first really bad nation-wide publicity.

Right to left, Yesler, Gatzert and Maddocks, made a Christmas tradition out of carrying together greeting cards to their friends in town, and probably getting their fill of seasonal snaps in return.  Below is a portrait of a younger Henry - a Henry who looks fit for wrestling with Puget Sound's first steam saw mill.
Right to left, Yesler, Gatzert and Maddocks, made a Christmas tradition out of carrying together greeting cards to their friends in town, and probably getting their fill of seasonal snaps in return. Below is a portrait of a younger Henry – a Henry who looks fit for wrestling with Puget Sound’s first steam saw mill.

Yesler,-Henry-Portrait-proc-WEB

In Andrew William Piper’s cartoon of the event, the easily identified Henry stands in the foreground busy with his favorite pastime: whittling wood. The cartoonist Piper was a popular confectioner who loved dancing and singing with his wife and eleven children. He was also a practical joker and the first socialist elected to the Seattle City Council. We don’t know if Piper also joined the local chorus of acclaim for the hangings. Judge Green more than objected. Once free of his hood, he rushed to the lynching and tried to cut the ropes, but failed.

The Finest Fruit THEN mr

On the far right of his cartoon, the cartoonist-confectionaire Piper has included the sign of the Chronicle, a newspaper located in the alley behind the Yesler back yard.   It was up this alley that the victims were rushed to their lynching.   Printed next is a transcript from an 1883 issue of the Chronicle, which describes a resplendent new saloon in the basement of the new Yesler-Leary Building at the northwest corner of Front (First Ave.) and Yesler Way and so also at the foot of James Street.

An excerpt from the
An excerpt from the August 23, 1883 issue of the Chronicle.
The Yesler-Leary building at the northwest corner of Yesler and Front.   Like the rest of the neighborhood, including the Yesler's hanging trees, it was destroyed during the "Great Fire" of 1889.
The Yesler-Leary building at the northwest corner of Yesler and Front. Like the rest of the neighborhood, including the Yesler’s hanging trees, it was destroyed during the “Great Fire” of 1889.
Twenty-six years later, the lynching block on James Street, between First and Second Avenues in 1908.  The photo was recorded from the Collins Building on the southeast corner of Second Ave. and James Street.  The Collins survives and well too.  On the left is the northeast corner of the Seattle Hotel.  It was destroyed in the early 1960s for the "Sinking Ship Garage."  The side below the Pioneer Building, right-of-center, where they lynching was done in 1882, is here crowded with locals and tourists in town for the 1908 visit of the Great White Fleet.
Twenty-six years later, the lynching block on James Street, between First and Second Avenues in 1908. The photo was recorded from the Collins Building on the southeast corner of Second Ave. and James Street. The Collins survives and well too. On the left is the northeast corner of the Seattle Hotel. It was destroyed in the early 1960s for the “Sinking Ship Garage.” The side below the Pioneer Building, right-of-center, where they lynching was done in 1882, is here crowded with locals and tourists in town for the 1908 visit of the Great White Fleet.  A few of the dreadnoughts can be seen in Elliott Bay.

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, Paul?  Yes Jean, and most of it, again, links to past features related to the place and/or the subject.    Most of extras – if one takes the opportunity to click and read – will be the several links that Ron Edge will be soon putting up directly below this exposition.  Then, after the links, we will probably continue on with a few more features – if we can find them tomorrow (Saturday) night when we get to them.   We should add that we do not encourage lynching of any sort, or for that matter capital punishment.   It is all cruel, pathetic and even useless.  Yes – or No! – we do not agree with the wood whittler Henry Yeslers.  We have imprisoned within quote marks our title “finest fruit” borrowed from him.

 

Then: Looking north from Pioneer Place (square) into the uptown of what was easily the largest town in Washington Territory. This is judged by the 3218 votes cast in the November election of 1884, about one fourth of them by the newly but temporarily enfranchised women.Tacoma, in spite of being then into its second year as the terminus for the transcontinental Northern Pacific Railroad, cast 1663 votes, which took third place behind Walla Walla's 1950 registered votes.

THEN: For the first twenty years of his more than 40 years selling tinware and other selected hardware, Zilba Mile's shop looked south across Yesler Way down First Ave. S, then known as Commercial Street.

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a1878-birdseye-web

THEN: With the clue of the ornate Pergola on the right, we may readily figure that we are in Pioneer Square looking south across Yesler Way.

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NIGHTY-BEARS SKUFFLE

It has reached that nighty-bears (copyright) moment before we are finished, this time with lynching related extras.  Until we return in the morning - or sometime tomorrow - to continuing dressing our figures, here is a James Street related skirmish I photographed in the early 1980s.  This, we hope, will momentarily satisfy the urges for sensational news we may have nurtured within.
Again, we have  reached that nighty-bears (copyright) moment before we are finished, this time with lynching-related extras. Until we return in the morning – or sometime tomorrow – to continue dressing our figures, here is a James Street related skirmish I photographed in the early 1980s. This, we hope, will momentarily satisfy the urges for sensational news we may have nurtured.   The 1882 lynchings were a few feet behind me, a century earlier.

 

 

Seattle Now & Then: A Brooklyn Home Taken for the Cleaners

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: When it was built in 1902, this box home, with classic Ionic pillars at the porch, was set above the northwest corner of the freshly graded Brooklyn Avenue and 47th Street in the University District.  (Courtesy, John Cooper)
THEN: When it was built in 1902, this box home, with classic Ionic pillars at the porch, was set above the northwest corner of the freshly graded Brooklyn Avenue and 47th Street in the University District. (Courtesy, John Cooper)
NOW: For customer parking, the grade at the corner was lowered for Carson Cleaners, which has occupied the corner since 1962, almost as long as the residence it replaced.
NOW: For customer parking, the grade at the corner was lowered for Carson Cleaners, which has occupied the corner since 1962, almost as long as the residence it replaced.

The original print of this “real photo postcard” is bordered with the scribbled message that I have cropped away: “Remember me to any old class mates you happen to see.”  The postcard shows another message as well, one that is most helpful, while still mildly mutilating the postcard’s face. It appears in the gray sky between the two homes. Although barely readable, you may decipher “Brooklyn Ave” written there.  The postcard also shows a dimly drawn line leading to the street number 4703, nailed to the top of the front porch.

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A detail pulled from the 1908 Baist Real Estate map with the intersection of Brooklyn Ave. and 47th Street right-of-center.
A detail pulled from the 1908 Baist Real Estate map with the intersection of Brooklyn Ave. and 47th Street right-of-center.
"Void" from some other but us dear reader.  This is, of course, the tax card generated by the Works Progress Administration in the late 1930s for its inventory of every taxable property in King County.  Many unregistered structures were found in the tax-enriching process.  (Courtesy, Washington State Archive, Bellevue branch)
“Void” for some others  but not us dear reader. This is, of course, one of the thousands of  tax cards generated by the Works Progress Administration in the late 1930s for its inventory of every taxable property in King County. Many unregistered structures were found in this tax-enriching process. (Courtesy, Washington State Archive, Bellevue branch)

This then is 4703 Brooklyn Avenue in the University District, an identification I corroborated with a photograph of the same house attached to its assessor’s “tax card,” held in the Puget Sound Branch of the Washington State Archives in Bellevue.  The tax records have the classic box built in 1902, a year in which the neighborhood was still as likely called Brooklyn as the University District.  Brooklyn was the name given to it in 1890 by super-developer James Moore. He chose the name because his addition “looked across the water” to Seattle proper like the New York borough of the same name that looks across the East River to Manhattan.  Brooklyn Avenue, its intended main street, was the first one graded in the addition, and it was at this intersection that Moore constructed a water tower.

A paid promotion for the then new Brooklyn addition placed in The Seattle Press for Dec. 1, 1890.
A paid promotion for the then new Brooklyn addition placed in The Seattle Press for Dec. 1, 1890.
Amos T. Winsor's obituary for Aug. 21, 1947
Amos T. Winsor’s obituary for Aug. 21, 1947

The owners of this classic box were Amos and Alice Winsor.  In his 1947 obituary (above) Amos is credited with having lived in the district for forty-four years and “built many of the early buildings on the University of Washington Campus, including Science (renamed Parrington) Hall.”  Included among the Winsor family’s many celebrations held in their home was their daughter Olivia Rachel’s marriage to a Brooklyn neighbor, Vilas Richard Rathbun, on April 16,

April 17,1913 Wedding report for
April 17,1913 Wedding report for Olive Rachel Winsor and Vilas Richard Rathbun, and another below for April twentieth.

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Olive and her husband Vilas have moved in with her parents at 4703 Brooklyn Avenue.
Olive and her new husband Vilas have moved in with her parents at 4703 Brooklyn Avenue.  The Seattle Time’s piece appears on December, 12, 1914.  Vilas’ parents live nearby on 15th Avenue.
By at most ten years more, part of the Winsor home has been divided into a rented apartment.
By at most ten years more, a sizable part of the Winsor home has been divided into a rented apartment.

1913.  They were, The Times reported, “Surrounded by about fifty relatives and intimate friends.”  The ceremony was conducted by Horace Mason, the progressive pastor of University Congregational Church.  From both the congregation’s and the addition’s beginnings in 1890, the Congregationalists were effective at promoting the Brooklyn Community Club, the principal campaigner for neighborhood improvements.

University Congregational Church at the northeast corner of Brooklyn Ave. and 43rd Street.
University Congregational Church at the northeast corner of Brooklyn Ave. and 43rd Street.

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Inside the Methodist sanctuary.
Inside the Congregationalist  sanctuary.
University Congregational's second sanctuary at the northeast corner of 43rd Street and Brooklyn Avenue appears bottom-right in this look southeast across the "Ave" and part of the UW campus from the Meany Hotel.
University Congregational’s second sanctuary at the northeast corner of 43rd Street and Brooklyn Avenue appears bottom-right in this look southeast across the “Ave” (at the center) and part of the UW campus (on the left) from the Meany Hotel.   The Methodists are on the left and the Post Office to this side of them.

In the “now” photograph, the by now half-century old plant of Carson Cleaners replaced the Winsor home in 1962.  Bob Carson tells how his parents, Roy and Doris, were persuaded by the corner’s new owner, Helen Rickert, of Helen Rickert Gown Shop on the “Ave”, to open a cleaners at the corner.  Richert was a fan, consistently pleased with how the Carsons handled her gowns and dresses in the cleaners Lake City shop.  The Carsons agreed to the move and brought their modern corner sign with them. Bob half apologizes for the condition of the now also half-century old sign and reader board.  “It needs to be repainted, but our lease is up in December and I’m retiring.”  For Bob we add both our “congratulations” and a “whoopee.”

The property's tax card continued.
The property’s tax card extended to show the big changes of 1962.  .

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, Paul?  Surely Jean, with Ron’s help we have three links added that are well-appointed with University District features, although most of them stick to “The Ave.” or University Way, AKA, thru its now 124 years, as 14th Avenue and Columbus Street.   But then Brooklyn was first named Broadway.

[CLICK & DISCOVER]

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On Oct. 18, 1925 The Seattle Times reached University Way with its series on Seattle's neighborhood.
On Oct. 18, 1925 The Seattle Times reached University Way with its series on Seattle’s neighborhood. [CLICK to ENLARGE]
We have shared this north end map before.  This detail shows that in the late 1890s the neighborhoods north of Lake Union included Fremont, Edgewater, Latona, and Brooklyn.  The last was not abandoned until well into the 20th century.  Now it is always University District.   But then Latona, Edgewater and Ross, far left, as hardly heard either.
We have shared this north end detail from a Seattle map before.  It shows that in the late 1890s the neighborhoods on the north shore of Lake Union included Fremont, Edgewater, Latona, and Brooklyn. This last was not abandoned until well into the 20th century. Now it is always University District.  Latona, Edgewater and Ross, far left, are hardly heard either.

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NOW THEN & MAYBE

NOW it has come to what we sometimes affectionately call Nighty-Bears, the wee-morning hour when we climb the stairs to what this night after a few hot days will be an warm bed.   I am eager to retire, somewhat drained by a pursuit this afternoon of a few more sides for this week’s subject, the broad way of Brooklyn Ave.  THEN after a late breakfast I’ll return and put up the “other sides” we, again, have prepared but for now not plopped because we are pooped.   Nighty-Bears then, but  with something entirely different at the temporary bottom: an unidentified “painted lady.”  She is for me an exciting intimation of all the joyful work that is expected ahead while shaping MOFA: the Museum of Forsaken Art.   And this place, below, if not forsaken is, at least, forgotten.  I do not remember where or when I recorded it’s rhythms and tenderly abused symmetry, but almost certainly not on Brooklyn, not even MAYBE.

z. Northwest-Painted-Lady-WEB

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BROOKLYN AVE. CONTINUES after breakfast, SUNDAY JULY 13, 2014, 12:45 PM

Unlike most corners, the intersection of Brooklyn and 47th has kept its gas.  Here at the northeast corner and next kitty-corner too.  Both are late 1930s tax photos, dutifully labeled. (Courtesy, Wash Start Archives)
Unlike many corners, the intersection of Brooklyn and 47th has kept its gas – here at the northeast corner and next below kitty-corner too, and  now with an enlarged Baptist sanctuary behind the station.   Both are late 1930s tax photos, dutifully labeled. (Courtesy, Wash Start Archives)

1. Brookly-Ave-47TH-NEc-Chevron-now-July-12,2014-WEB

2. Brooklyn-&-47th-swC-Union-76-7-14-2004-WEB

2. Mobilgas-4557-Brooklyn--CA-1938

Along with Fringies and Hippies, Urban Renewal - or studies and plans for such - came to the University District.  This slide came to me from the district's then acting mayor, Cal McCune, a tall, broad-shouldered, thoughtful friend.  It was part of a survey of the district concerned primarily with its parking.  The view looks north on Brooklyn Ave. from the Meany  Hotel and shows in the foreground the "residents" to the sides of 47th and Brookllyn, including the cleaners, the two service stations and the Episcopalians.  University Heights school is above-center.
Along with Fringies and Hippies, Urban Renewal – or studies and plans for such – came to the University District in the 1960s. This slide came to me from the district’s then acting mayor, Calmar McCune, a tall, broad-shouldered, thoughtful friend. It was part of a survey of the district concerned primarily with its parking. The view looks north on Brooklyn Ave. from the Meany Hotel and shows in the foreground the “residents” to the sides of 47th and Brooklyn, including Carson Cleaners, the two service stations and the Christ parish Episcopalians. University Heights school is above-center.
University Heights, looking northwest from the intersection of 50th and University Way, then still named 14th Avenue.
University Heights, looking northwest from the intersection of 50th and University Way, then still named 14th Avenue.

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I snapped both the above and below records of the north facade of the Kincade Apartments and coin-op laundromat that has been there for as long as I remember the neighborhood.  The bottom record I made in the heat of yesterday's late afternoon, but I neither remember when I took the photo on top nor why.   The place was important to me and my bag of soiled clothes, and I got their in the Toyoto on the right.  And on top Safeco and the Meany Hotel look down like like chums.
I snapped both the above and below records of the north facade of the Kincade Apartments and coin-op laundromat that has been there for as long as I remember the neighborhood. The bottom record I made in the heat of yesterday’s late afternoon, but I neither remember when I took the photo on top nor why. The place was important to me and my bag of soiled clothes, and I got their in the Toyoto on the right.  On top Safeco and the Meany Hotel look down like like chums.

4. BOOKLYLN-AVE-Wash-N'-Shop-ca4520-Now-7-12-2014-web

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Mid-block on the east side of Brooklyn Ave. between 45th and 47th streets, the Kincade Apartments, circa 1925.
Mid-block on the east side of Brooklyn Ave. between 45th and 47th streets, the Kincade Apartments, circa 1925.

6. Brooklyn-Ave-ca-4516-apt-NOW-WEB=====

The Evelyn Apartments north and across Brooklyn Ave. from the Kincade Apartments.
The Evelyn Apartments north of and across Brooklyn Ave. from the Kincade Apartments.

8. Evelyn Apts. Brooklyn-Brick-mid-block-ca-4523-now-WEB

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THE OUTRAGEOUS TACO CO., THEN & NOW

Another slide from Mayor Cal's district survey in the late 1960s.
Another slide from Mayor Cal’s district survey in the late 1960s.

7B - Brooklyn-Outrageous-Taco-detail-now-Juy-12,-14-WEB

North on Brooklyn from the cleaners at 47rh.
North on Brooklyn from Carson Cleaners at 47rh.

7a. Brooklyn-Ave.-outrageous-taco-w.a.-now-WEB

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Organized in 1890 the First Church of Brooklyn, with help from its "mother" Plymouth Congregational Church, built this chapel on the west side of Brooklyn Avenue, mid-block between 41st and 42nd Streets.  Thru its first years it was both a church and civic center, and much of  the first neighborhood activism was conspired within it.  In 1910 the congregation moved into its new sanctuary at 43rd and Brooklyn - featured above - with its new name, the University Congregational Church.
Organized in 1890 the first Church of Brooklyn, with help from its “mother” Plymouth Congregational Church, built this chapel on the west side of Brooklyn Avenue, mid-block between 41st and 42nd Streets. Thru its first years it was both a church and civic center, and much of the first neighborhood activism was conspired within it. In 1910 the congregation moved into its new sanctuary at 43rd and Brooklyn – featured above – with its new name, the University Congregational Church.  Queen Anne Hill is on the left horizon.
The embarrassingly plain and sensationally named - for hormone-driven students - Maverick Apartments take the place and more of the community's first church.
The embarrassingly plain and sensationally named – for the more impetuous and hormone-driven students? – Maverick Apartments take the place and more of the community’s first church.

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The Super AP Market the east side of Brooklyn Ave. and north of the Congregationalist's 1910 sanctuary, were not so super, but still long-lived, that is, I remember it.   This view looks to the northwest and shows, top-center, the General Insurance Building - formally the Brooklyn Building, and later the Safeco Building with the big sign on the roof, and since 1973 the home of its 22 story tower and now embraced in the University of Washington's neighborhood hegemony.  The depression-time tax photo also gives a glimpse of the Meany Hotel, upper-right, at the northwest corner of 45th Street and Brooklyn Avenue.
The Super AP Market on the east side of Brooklyn Ave. and north of the Congregationalist’s 1910 sanctuary, were not so super, but still long-lived, that is, I remember it. This view looks to the northwest and shows, top-center, the General Insurance Building – formally the Brooklyn Building, and later the Safeco Building with the big reader-board sign on the roof (see below), and since 1973 the home of its 22 story tower, a tower now embraced in the University of Washington’s neighborhood hegemony. The depression-time tax photo also gives a glimpse of the Meany Hotel, upper-right, at the northwest corner of 45th Street and Brooklyn Avenue.
Work-in-progress on the district's station for the underground rapid transit.
Work-in-progress on the district’s station for the underground rapid transit.
The back of the Safeco roof-top sign seen from the Meany Hotel, ca. 1969.  I remember the message of its reader-board, "Big Brother is Watching."
The back of the Safeco roof-top sign seen from the Meany Hotel, ca. 1969. I remember a message on its reader-board, “Big Brother is Watching.”
The Meany Hotel in 2002.
The Meany Hotel in 2002 with its then and short-lived new name, University Tower.
Handsome, statuesque, professorial, and a good poser, Ed Meany was often painted ad photographed.  The artist here is unknown - by me, at least.  Nor do I remember the painting.
Handsome, statuesque, professorial, and a good poser, the hotel’s namesake  Ed Meany was often painted ad photographed. The artist here is unknown – by me, at least. Nor do I remember the painting. [Courtesy, MOHAI]
Edmond Meany at the 1931 inauguration banquet for the opening of his namesake hotel.   (Courtesy, U.W.Libraries)
Edmond Meany at the 1931 inauguration banquet for the opening of his namesake hotel. (Courtesy, U.W.Libraries)
By comparison, it is the Golden Anniversary of my 1964 visit to the Meany Hotel with Joyce Gammel.   On our first date after dinner at the Space Needle ($10 dollars we spent on dinner and wine!) we stopped at the Meany  and improvised a photography studio with a table lamp in the lobby.  That evening was encouraging.  We spent the next seven months together, until her death from a blood cancer in June of 1965.  Ten years more and she may have survived with chemo.  Although Joyce had some of that cocktail in '64 it was crude by comparison and considerably more painful too.  Below is a charcoal of Joyce drawn by my painting mentor then, Herman Keys.
By comparison, here are two portraits of Joyce Gammel.  it is the Golden Anniversary of my 1964 visit to the Meany Hotel with Joyce  on our first date. After dinner at the Space Needle ($10 dollars we spent on dinner and wine!) we stopped at the Meany and improvised a photography studio with a table lamp in the lobby. That evening was encouraging. We spent the next seven months together, until Joyce’s death from a blood cancer in June of 1965. Ten years more and she may have survived with chemo. Although Joyce had some of that cocktail even in ’64 it was crude by comparison and considerably more painful too. Below is a charcoal of Joyce drawn by my painting mentor then, Herman Keys.

5,-Joyce-Gammel-painting-WEB

5. meany-main-then-WEB

First appeared in Pacific, April 20, 2003.
First appeared in Pacific, April 20, 2003.

5. Meany-Hall-Now-WEB

The Safeco Tower newly signed with the University's glowing banner snapped from the car window on Roosevelt after leaving Trader Joes on Dec. 6, 2008.
The Safeco Tower renewed or transformed with the University’s glowing banner snapped from the car window on Roosevelt after leaving Trader Joes on Dec. 6, 2008.
Forty-Fifth Street as the "Gateway to Wallingford . . . and Ballard" seen looking west from Brooklyn Avenue on Dec. 22, 1948, photographed either by Lawton Gowey or Robert Bradley.   The latter's slides are often mixed in with the former's collection.
Forty-Fifth Street as the “Gateway to Wallingford . . . and Ballard” seen looking west from Brooklyn Avenue on Dec. 22, 1948, photographed either by Horace Sykes, or Lawton Gowey or Robert Bradley. The last’s  slides are often mixed in with the Syke’s collection, which were inherited by Gowey and then given to me.

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ANOTHER BROOKLYN

3. Brooklyn-bldg-University-&-3rd-then-WEB

Lawton Gowey's glowing record of the Brooklyn Building on August 25, 1976.
Lawton Gowey’s glowing record of the Brooklyn Building at the southeast corner of University Street ad Second Avenue on August 25, 1976.

 

 

Now & Then here and now

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