More from Morphologist John Sundsten on Characteristic Brain Faculties

THE HUMAN BRIAN: the great organ of perception. It’s brains this way and brains that way. Everywhere there are brains. Not every reader of this weblog will want to go further into the reflections of noted Morphologist-Professor John Sundsten.  As with any text in neurology this is not ordinarily easy reading.  However, for this blog only, the good professor has included revealing illustrations and most of them, thank god, are merely analogies.  Our fine anatomical explorer offers heartfelt alternatives for both new age readers and others who hope that modern brain science might offer some relief from both mankind’s anxieties of concern and its frequent stupidity.  (I for one will be studying this for any clues on how to prevent cats from peeing on the furniture.)  This compassionate lecturer also respects the early efforts of Phrenologists and their detailed study of cranial bumps, and again notes several correlations in characteristic faculties between the findings of modern neurology and those bone topographists. Our steadfast professor makes note of some other charming coincidences. You will, we feel certain, be surprised to learn that there are many fine correspondences between the overall shape of Green Lake and a cross-section of a human brain. In appreciation for this gift we will also include a few more Sundsten Snapshots from his walks around the lake.  And we will conclude with a revealing exposition of the morphologist as bird watcher titled “Fourteen Ways of Looking at a Blue Crane.”

For the neurology lessons that follow you may wish to draw a cup of tea – mint perhaps – and find a comfortable chair for you, your laptop and your cat, if you have one.   What follows is mostly Sundsten, unless it obviously is not.  John Sundsten’s own exposed head has been used for this illustration.

[Remember – CLICK to ENLARGE.]

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A recent study of the effect of whole brain Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) with laser guided stimulating technology (GST)* has been proposed. It was suggested that by tracing a laser-guided stimulating magnetic beam around the Chakra patterns affixed to the head, results on behavior and or the relief of medical symptoms might be achieved. One part of the study intends to determine whether laser-guided TMS to the whole brain through the crown Chakra pattern (Skrt … Sahasrara), the round symbol at the top of the head, could expand consciousness, possibly opening awareness into a more spiritual global sense. On the other hand, TMS through the head-placed symbol of the root Chakra (Muladhara), the symbol at the top left, was proposed to test its effect on lower back pain and sciatica.  One Yoga instructor suggested that perhaps the brain itself houses the energies, initially proposed by practitioners to flow through the traditional Chakra sites at various body levels; eg, crown chakra at top of head, and root chakra at base of spine. Thus the investigators would be activating, or releasing such energies directly at deep brain sites, instead of by traditional meditative techniques. (*It will not be necessary to warn readers against trying this guided stimulating technology (GST) at home for it is not yet available – anywhere really.)

Included next for closer inspection are enlargements of examples drawn from the Accordance of Analogous Brain Faculties Matrixes (AABFM).

[Always CLICK to ENLARGE and sometimes CLICK TWICE.]

Hair cells in the Cochlea (auditory receptors) - roof moss.
Hair cells in the Cochlea (auditory receptors) - roof moss.
Banks of Calcarine Fissure (visual cortex) - A Wallingford sunset quartered and joined.
Banks of Calcarine Fissure (visual cortex) - A Wallingford sunset quartered and joined.
BOB: Brain on Blogs - crunched can on 42nd Ave. near Sunnyside Street.
BOB: Brain on Blogs - crunched can on 42nd Ave. near Sunnyside Street.
Septal Nuclei (pleasure center) - Wallingford planter quartered and joined.
Septal Nuclei (pleasure center) - Wallingford planter quartered and joined.
Cerebral Gray Matter - plantings found on Sunsten's front lawn.
Cerebral Gray Matter - plantings found on Sunsten's front lawn.
Synapses - Seeds and leaves on a Wallingford front lawn.
Synapses - Seeds and leaves on a Wallingford front lawn.

Dumb Luck or Fate? Believe it or Not! Many “Faculties of the Brain” as described by the “pseudo-science” Phrenology correlate in temperament and position with brain physiology and anatomy as described by modern science!

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Phrenology Chart … Real Brain Sites

combatitiveness … amygdala

amativeness … pyriform cortex

alimentiveness … hypothalamus

calculation … parietal lobe

language … superior temporal gyri

conscientiousness … prefrontal lobe

conjugal love  … cingulate gyrus

friendship (pleasure)… septal nuclei

GREEN LAKE SIMILITUDES

Look carefully and you will see both the Thalamus and Hypothalamus on a midline view of a human brain at the left, and also on the Olmsted’s 1910 Green Lake planning map at the right. You can also see intimations of the pineal (pine cone) gland at the left of the brain’s Thalamus in the bulge at the left on the map. Comes to mind something like the Sherlock Holmes case of the “purloined letters” that were not seen because they were exposed on the table for all to see, so here to the right in the center of the Thalamus sits the shining Massa Intermedia. Imagine the wonderful coincidence. On the map it is Duck Island! Quack Quack!!! It seems to shout. There are other comparisons – certainly more subtle – but we leave those to learned readers who will know that the Hypothalamus is functionally involved with what we call the “Four F’s”: Feeding, Fighting, Fleeing and Sex.

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GREEN LAKE on the MIND

Recent details from John Sundsten’s walks around Green Lake.

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There is a dance form called "hooping" referring to artistic movements performed with a hoop. The hoop could be the familiar hula-hoop, or fancy heavier ones crafted for beauty. There are several different styles ranging through such forms as rhythmic gymnastics, hip-hop, freestyle dance, fire dance, and twirling. Hooping is apparently a part of a subculture of dancers who are practicing one of the "flow arts". I happened to witness one such performance on one of my Greenlake walks. I am proposing a new subspecies for these special walkers. Hoopera ambulus, of the Class Hoopingus, Family Flowartica.  js
There is a dance form called "hooping" referring to artistic movements performed with a hoop. The hoop could be the familiar hula-hoop, or fancy heavier ones crafted for beauty. There are several different styles ranging through such forms as rhythmic gymnastics, hip-hop, freestyle dance, fire dance, and twirling. Hooping is apparently a part of a subculture of dancers who are practicing one of the "flow arts". I happened to witness one such performance on one of my Greenlake walks. I am proposing a new subspecies for these special walkers. Hoopera ambulus, of the Class Hoopingus, Family Flowartica. js

BIRD WATCHING, BLUE CRANE & GREEN LAKE BE HERE NOW

With modern digital recreations – also known as “photoshop polishing” – the anatomist bird watcher has crossed the country from corner to corner and transported a Floridian cousin’s Blue Crane (and not a Heron as some might perceive) to the shores of our Green Lake. The testing required for this operation is sampled at the bottom with “Fourteen Ways of Looking at a Blue Crane.” As a vestige or glimmer of the Crane’s southern origins Sunsten has made no fussy effort to conform the lighting on the tall bird’s plumage with that on the Green Lake shore. A good four hours of day light had passed between them.  The gregarious professor was mostly pleased that the bird fit so well in the hole he’d reserved for it.

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MASSA INTERMEDIA REVISITED

The agile professor concludes with another analogy for the Massa Intermedia – the familiar inverted psychotropic mushroom: L’Enfant Magnifique ou Terrible.  Also known here as Duck Island.

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Seattle Now & Then: The Sprague Hotel on Yesler

(Click to enlarge photos)

THEN: The Sprague Hotel at 706 Yesler Way was one of many large structures –hotels, apartments and duplexes, built on First Hill to accommodate the housing needs of the city’s manic years of grown between its Great Fire in 1889 and the First World War. Photo courtesy Lawton Gowey
THEN: The Sprague Hotel at 706 Yesler Way was one of many large structures –hotels, apartments and duplexes, built on First Hill to accommodate the housing needs of the city’s manic years of grown between its Great Fire in 1889 and the First World War. Photo courtesy Lawton Gowey
NOW: With the Seattle Freeway ditch behind and below him Jean Sherrard records a portion of the well designed, maintained and landscaped Yesler Terrace.
NOW: With the Seattle Freeway ditch behind and below him Jean Sherrard records a portion of the well designed, maintained and landscaped Yesler Terrace.

Perhaps the lens was too small but the Works Progress Administration (WPA) photographer who included the Sprague Hotel in the inventory of likely First Hill structures that would be razed for the building of Yesler Terrace, the Northwest’s first public housing, has cut off the street, Yesler Way, and its sidewalks.  The inventory was done in 1939-40 and by 1941 all of this was gone, including Spruce Street on the left that here still meets Yesler Way at 7th Avenue, which is also out of frame.

The curtains in the windows of the Sprague suggest that at least some of these rooms are still in use.  That they are depression-time cheap is advertised in the sign posted above the second floor on the narrow nose of this pie-shaped hotel.  It reads, “Sprague Hotel $1.50 Week & Up, Hot and Cold Water, Free Bath, Good Service, Housekeeping Rooms.”  Ikeda Taijiro is listed as the hotel’s manager in 1938, but for much of its earlier life an Emil Enquist was in charge.

The windows of the vacant street level storefronts are signed “Cascade Dye Works and Laundry.”  Before the crash of 1929 Ahiko Tsuginosuke is listed there with his dye business but following a few depression years he is gone.  By 1935 the name Cascade has been taken by a laundry on Fairview Avenue in the Cascade Neighborhood.  Early in the 20th Century combination dying and laundry businesses were commonplace – there are more than 150 of them listed in the 1920 city directory.  By 1940 the number has dwindled to less than twenty.

In part, because this often dilapidated “Profanity Hill” part of First Hill was multi-racial so was the public housing that replaced it.  Thanks to the soft-spoken Jesse Epstein, the persistent and brilliant bureaucrat and UW grad from Montana who conceived of and ran the project, Yesler Terrace is thought to be the first integrated public housing project in the country.

WEB EXTRAS

A few steps west on Yesler, looking northwest
A few steps west on Yesler, looking northwest

Additionally, Paul has unearthed a treasure trove of photos of houses recorded before Yesler Terrace.

Some Yesler Terrace Sacrifices

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The structure shown above and the others below are from that part of the First Hill neighborhood that was popularly called “Profanity Hill” by the time they were recorded in 1940. All but two have their own captions written directly on them by the hand of whatever government surveyor/clerk did the work. They follow much the form and even style of lettering used by the depression-time Federal WPA photo-census of all taxable structures in King County. Many of you by now, I’d bet, if you own a home in King County have ordered the WPA picture of it from that survey – most likely from 1937 or 1938. But these are from 1940 and have more to do with preparing to clear the land for the building of Yesler Terrace and completion of much of it for residency by 1943. Perhaps these photographs were taken to help assess the values of the structures destroyed for the building of Seattle’s then first grand example of public housing.

What may surprise you is how worthy some of the structures appear to us now, and how we would like to have the chance to restore them. Perhaps a sample of these Victorian – often Italianate – residences might have been saved as landmarks. They could surely have added some variety to the uniform new neighborhood that was built over their remains. But in 1940 there was less sensitivity for landmarks and heritage than there is now, and by 1943 when Yesler Terrace opened and the country was in the midst of World War Two there was even less. There are more pictures of these razed structures, and many of them, frankly, don’t look quite as worthy of preservation as the ones included in this batch. As time allows we will include some of those later. For comparison we’ll start with an early photograph of one of the Yesler Terrace units when it was new in 1943.

[Click to Enlarge]

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SMITH TOWER COMPARISON

Attached below are two views east into the First Hill (Profanity section) Neighborhood from the top of the Smith Tower.

The first dates from ca.1913-14 when the tower was being completed.  The yellow line dropping from the sky over Bellevue ends on the roof of the Sprague Hotel, the structure featured at the top.  The blocks to the right or south of Yesler Way are still being developed following the completion of what is called the “Jackson Street Regrade” but actually involved many more streets and avenues.  Second only to the Denny Regrade this one, along 9th Avenue and between Jackson and Weller (roughly) dropped the spine or crest of the ridge that includes Capitol, First, Beacon and the rest as far south as Renton, about 90 feet below the old grade.  Far right is the nearly new 12th Avenue Bridge over the also new Dearborn Cut.   If you click to enlarge this panorama you will find many other still familiar landmarks.  Or you can go searching for the structures that appear in the collected thumbnails views just above.  Their location is – with one exception – more than hinted with their internal captions.

Our copy of the second image has been dated ca. 1954 – by someone.  Here you can see the fairly regular dapple of the still young Yesler Terrace community that took the place of the old neighborhood.  The “best part” of this pan is the most ephemeral part – the shadow of the Smith Tower.  Note how the western side of First Hill,  which is barren in the earlier view is now held against the rains by a second growth of “weed trees” mostly.   The old flatiron city hall – police station, later named the 400 Yesler Building is evident bottom-left in both views and survives.   (It occurs to me only now to put up a post-freeway view, and I might find one in the Gowey or Bradley collections even before Jean’s next visit to the top of the Smith Tower.  Keep watching.)

[Click these TWICE or even THRICE and they will continue to enlarge.]

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BLOGADDENDUM from Ron Edge

The helpful Ron Edge sends just now – Sunday Afternoon Nov. 29, 2009 – a Pacific Aerial that puts the Smith Tower views to First Hill in perspective.   The print is dated August 11, 1950.  The northern reach of Yesler Terrace can be seen near the base of Harborview Hospital.  The rows of typical Yesler Terrace housing units reach north of Jefferson Street to the bluff above James Street.   Columbia Street is far left.  [We will continue to keep our eyes open for a more recent view of the neighborhood from the top of the Smith Tower – or Jean will get one first.]

CLICK to ENLARGE

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Two on the Pike Place Public Market from HELIX – Spring of 1969

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We enter again now into the archival world of Ron Edge’s clippings. While scanning the complete opera of Helix (ultimately for this blog-web site and my own planned “Helix Redux” project) Ron came upon two illustrated features printed in the spring of 1969 and so in the seed-patch of saving the Pike Place Market from ruin by the bulldozing-financial means of the ironically named “Urban Renewal.” We know, of course, that the Market was saved. Here, first, is Victor Steinbrueck describing that salvation while still stirring the faithful. Here, second, is then Helix photographer Paul Temple’s “Faces of the Market” centerfold (and more) pictorial, published two weeks following Steinbrueck’s rallying April essay. Framed between the two Helix features is a reflection on them by Paul Dunn, who – he explains at the bottom – recently retired from his 13-years as President of Friends of the Market. Paul is also quoted in the “now-then” feature that follows this Helix business.

[ remember - click TWICE to enlarge]

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Two Helix features are printed here: above and below. Both are from the spring of 1969. The last paragraphs of the first feature (above) disclose that Victor Steinbrueck wrote this summary of the campaign to save the Pike Place Public Market when it was still a work-in-progress. There, besides Victor, are also noted Ibsen Nelson, and Fred Bassetti, the remaining two of the three principle, prominent Friends of the Market – the “Founders.” All three were noted architects and each had respect and standing in both the business and academic communities. Bassetti was (and still is) an eloquent wordsmith.  Steinbrueck first and then Nelson too have passed.

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Of note on how little some things change, is the reference in the article to a comparison of money to be spent (wisely) on the Pike Place Market and not on “ball teams and domed stadiums”.  The article reveals some Friends’ advance thinking as they refer to citizen legal action and a “referendum”. In fact, in December of 1970 an injunctive writ of mandamus was filed, which legally stopped the bulldozers giving Friends time to mount the Initiative campaign, which did save the Market.

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Victor Steinbrueck’s op-ed article lays out a preferred course of action, a planning team, virtually free to the city, which was a reasonable request. It was a version of the petition signed by 53,000 citizens (almost 25% of the registered voters in Seattle), which the City Council rejected by a 9 – 0 vote. This piece, published by the then two-year old Helix, Seattle’s own “Underground Press” weekly tabloid, is an indication that Friends of the Market and other preservation advocates were moving from civil and decorous petitioning (such a daffodil marches through the streets) to action in the courts and on the ballot.

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To “repeat” the historical view featured at the top of that first Helix article, I will attach the one picture I took before the batteries died in my camera. It is about as good as it will get. Ed Newbold’s shop and the Newsstand sit astride the exact space, but no windows can be seen so I avoided it. I mean my shot is NOT quite an exact repeat of the “Then.” I’ll explain that in the caption below.

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The second Helix feature, a pictorial on the Market, attached below with its shorter essay adds more props to the stage for those important days. Big things were happening in the Queen City. First another review of those times. March and April 1969 were critical months for the Market and its Friends. I repeat, and think about it! Petitions with 53,000 citizen signatures had been presented to the City Council, which rejected the request to NOT approve urban renewal scheme 23 – unanimously. (The political arrogance of those nine council members. The city had 500,000, plus souls, at the most only 200,000 were old enough or willing to vote. That was over 30% of the electorate telling this city body what to do.  And it would not!)

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Public hearings before the City Council were scheduled between March 19 and April 25 (the latter date is when the first of these two Helix articles came out. The pictorial was published two week later.) Victor Steinbrueck organized supporters and rallied others to pack the Council Chambers and sign to speak. This is how Market historian Alice Shorett described the scene: “Twelve sessions were held on ten separate days, thirty three hours and thirty minutes of testimony were recorded (By the way, the City Clerk, Municipal Records staff have dug up those hearing tapes and they can be listened to in City Hall.) Eighty documents were submitted. Phalanges of partisans – pro-renewal people mostly in business suits and pro-Market forces a motley crew carrying banners (“Beware of Plastic Markets”) and daffodils – applauded their champions.

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A lot of good it did. The City Council passed the resolution for final approval of the $2 million first year HUD urban renewal money on August 11, 1969. Victor refers to “litigation” and “referendum” in the first Helix piece from April 25. Both came to pass: the litigation to stop the bulldozers while Friends could write the Initiative and gain the signatures for the ballot approval.

The rest is, as they say, history.   Heady times in the old town then.

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Now to conclude, I’ll return to that first Helix feature and how I chose my prospect for repeating the photograph from the spring of 1969. First I’ll identify the general location. The unattributed photo (Helix photographer Paul Temple probably snapped it as he did those in the second pictorial feature.) of a farmer selling vegetables from a day table is most likely what we now call Economy Row. The support column is not from the Main Arcade. Rather it is the area between First Avenue and the Market sign, which has been open to the weather since the sidewalk was covered (and coveted) by the Goodwins in the 1920’s.  The first protection was with awnings and later a full glazed wall was added. It is seen here. The vacant stall I recorded on Economy Row is not the exact spot our 1969 farmer is selling from. The reason is that Ed Newbold’s Wildlife Picture shop and the First and Pike Newsstand block all the windows, columns and other identifying details. The day stalls lasted on Economy Row through much of the 1970’s, but finally gave way to more regular merchants in divided spaces with some permanence. The farmers were never fond of the space because it was open to winds and shoppers didn’t seem to care to linger. The glazed wall of sixteen square windows, plus swinging four panels, made the area more comfortable, but management could never keep enough farmers to make the space pay. For a time, before the newsstand expanded into the row, Dickie Yokoyama ran a high stall on weekends selling produce. That didn’t work out either.

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My picture is of the vacated Bedalia Bakery. The post on the right is the same kind as in the “Then” picture, so are the light fixtures and all the windows. What is gone are the low farmer tables.

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Sorry this is so long.  I didn’t, as Mark Twain used to say, have time to write a short caption.

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Paul Dunn,

fessdunn@aol.com

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I asked Paul Dunn to follow his mark with a brief description of his place now as retiring archon for Friends of the Market, and also about what is next up with his pithy-witty column Post Ally Passages.

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I have been replaced by Ed Singler as President of Friends of the Market after a 13 year run.  On my departure the Friends gave me a fine-bronzed plaque and gift certificates to Maximillien, Champagne, Pink Door and Matt’s in the Market. The plaque is not edible.  I have been writing a column, Post Alley Passages, in the Pike Place Market News (www/pikeplacemarketnews.com), first begun in 1989, and picked up again in 2003. December’s subject is Market bookstores – a place to find perfect gifts, titled, The Pike Place Book Market. The Market News Archives carry all past columns and can be read online.

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Happy Thanksgiving.

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Paul Dunn,

 

P.S. Click TWICE to Enlarge.

 

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Seattle Now & Then: Friends of the Market

(click to enlarge photos)

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THEN: Depression-time customers examine the eggs and plucked hens in the Market’s North Arcade. (Courtesy Seattle Public Library)
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NOW: By counting pillars Jean Sherrard figures he is pretty close to the prospect of the historical photographer. Friends of the Market president Paul Dunn agrees. (photo by Jean Sherrard)

In 1964, or about thirty years after this depression Pike Place Market scene was photographed, architect-activist Victor Steinbrueck and others formed “Friends of the Market.” The group meant to do what it’s name decreed: save the market then from the forces of Urban Renewal – people often with good intentions but half-blinded by progress – that might have razed the market for parking lots and more offices.

“Seattle’s finest institution” was founded by farmers – and the city council – in 1907 as a way to distribute fresh goods directly from “producer to you” and so around the then dreaded “middle man.”  The market forum grew like zucchini and by 1911 vendors and farmers were already being picked through the market master’s daily lottery to lay their plucked hens, brussels sprouts and sometimes fancy needle work on these tables in the North Arcade that reached almost as far as Virginia Street.

I asked Paul Dunn, an old friend and the current president of Friends of the Market, about this depression-time photo.  Paul readily replied, “The Market was a valued destination in the Depression.  Women in hats shop for values directly from the producer, here poultry farmers with chickens and eggs. The Western view windows, the dangling light fixtures, the columns with ornamental capitals, and the two rows of theater lights are prominent still.  Today these same daytables support producers of crafts. The overhead lights are on a lower bar, the ceiling is repaired and painted, the theater lights are brighter, and the concrete floor is covered with memorial tiles. The spirit of the Goodwins, the market’s early managers, to embellish the Market as theater is still around.”

You should know that Friends of the Market is steadfast as an open membership advocate for the Pike Place Farmers Market.  It also conducts educational and historical programs. If you are interested, contact President Dunn at Friends of the Market, 85 Pike St. #92 Seattle, WA 98101.  Or call Paul at (206) 587 5767.

The Leland Hotel at the Pike Place Public Market and the covered arcades beyond it, in a "tax photo" recorded in the late 1930s.  Courtesy, Muncipal Archive.
The Leland Hotel at the Pike Place Public Market and the covered arcades beyond it, in a "tax photo" recorded in the late 1930s. Courtesy, Municipal Archive.

WEB EXTRA – FARMERS & FAMILIES

This now-then feature appeared first in The Seattle Sunday Times Pacific Northwest Magazine on Aug. 6, 2006.

THEN: The Pike Place Market started out in the summer of 1907 as a city-supported place where farmers could sell their produce directly to homemakers.  Since then the Market culture has developed many more attractions including crafts, performers, restaurants, and the human delights that are only delivered by milling and moving crowds.   {Photo Courtesy Old Seattle Paperworks in the Pike Place Market, lower level.)
THEN: The Pike Place Market started out in the summer of 1907 as a city-supported place where farmers could sell their produce directly to homemakers. Since then the Market culture has developed many more attractions including crafts, performers, restaurants, and the human delights that are only delivered by milling and moving crowds. {Photo Courtesy Old Seattle Paperworks in the Pike Place Market, lower level.)
NOW: around Rachel during the summer of 2006
NOW: around Rachel during the summer of 2006

A century ago Seattle, although barely over fifty, was already a metropolis with a population surging towards 200,000.   Consequently, now our community’s centennials are multiplying.  This view of boxes, sacks and rows of wagons and customers is offered as an early marker for the coming100th birthday of one of Seattle’s greatest institutions, the Pike Place Public Market.

Both the “then” and “now” look east from the inside angle of this L-shaped landmark.  The contemporary view also looks over the rump of Rachel, the Market’s famous brass piggy bank, which when empty is 200 pounds lighter than her namesake 750 pound Rachel, the 1985 winner of the Island County Fair.   Since she was introduced to the Market in 1986 Rachel has contributed about $8,000 a year to its supporting Market Foundation.  Most of this largess has been dropped through the slot in her back as small coins.

Next year – the Centennial Year 2007 – the Market Foundation, and the Friends of the Market, and many other vital players in the closely-packed universe that is the Market will be helping and coaxing us to celebrate what local architect Fred Bassetti famously described in the mid-1960s as “An honest place in a phony time.”  And while it may be argued that the times have gotten even phonier the market has held onto much of its candor.

The historical view may date from the Market’s first year, 1907.  If not, then the postcard photographer Otto Frasch recorded it soon after.   It is a scene revealing the original purpose of the Public Market:  “farmers and families” meeting directly and with no “middleman” between them.

More Green Lake Morphology with John Sundsten Ph.D.

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Happily we return now with more landscapes by our friend the distinguished morphologist John Sundsten. This time he mixes Green Lake scenes with an example or two from his midbrain research as an Emeritus Assoc. Prof in the Department of Biological Structure at the University of Washington (We write it out for those reading this in Wisconsin.) As he explains in his brief and poetic introduction, John frequently walks the circle around Green Lake here in Seattle. Although he is older than I, he is Finnish and so both in fine shape and generally better looking than the rest of us over seventy. Ask any Italian and they will tell you that the Finno-Ugrics are generally the handsomest people on the globe, and the Fins return those sentiments with a strong attraction to Italians. At the bottom of this montage of John’s photographs, we have included one of his cross-sections of the midbrain, for which John offers a helpful analogy, that Jean has illustrated this lovely fall Sunday afternoon from the 45th Street I-5 Overpass.

Two examples of inspiring Green Lake morphology
Two examples of inspiring Green Lake morphology
When John Sundsten sees ducks in a row or two rows he also sees patterns of synapses and sub-arachnoid spaces filled with gray and white matter in great splendor.
When John Sundsten sees ducks in a row or two rows he also sees patterns of synapses and sub-arachnoid spaces filled with gray and white matter in great splendor.

Here follows John’s introduction, followed by more examples from his Green Lake walks and concluded with a slice of his research.

These views around Green Lake were made in the last couple of months or so (August-November). In my more or less daily walks around Green Lake there are always new things appearing to me, whether clusters or mounds of landscaped trees, or loner trees angled in strange ways, or unusual unnamed trees, or treetops against an endless sky, or tree branches arching into space, or tree bark crackling or peeling or canyoned, or stones left as solid reminders, or changing foliage moving in slow time, or long views of the other side mirrored in the water,  or lazy-sometimes-busy birds eating or claiming rights, or lakeside details of ferns and other growing things crowding each other. And every day it is different in color and tone, with unknown expectations like the initial wonder in a love affair.

[Remember – CLICK to enlarge.]

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The above is a transverse cross section (imagine one of a stack of poker chips) through a part of the human brain called the midbrain. The neuron cell bodies are stained a cresyl violet color. Unstained (more or less) zones are where the nerve fibers (axons) are packed together. The polygons encircle various neuron components found at this level. The midbrain does many things but perhaps most important is that it is essential for the maintenance of consciousness. One of the other things it does is to regulate  movement (along with many other structures). Note the very dense accumulation of stained neurons at the bottom of the figure. Some of these form the Substantia Nigra, which cells project to basal ganglia in the forebrain. When no longer functioning properly (a loss of a neurotransmitter, dopamine),  Parkinson’s disease results. Most of the non-staining regions are axons packed together, traveling through to other destinations. Imagine you are on the overpass at 45th and I-5, and you are looking through this section of the brain. The nerve tracts are like the freeway traffic; a lot of it is going to Everett (the forebrain) and a lot is going to Tacoma (the pons, medulla and spinal cord).

Below and by way of analogy only is 1-5 looking south from the 45th Street overpass on Sunday Nov. 15, 2009.  (by Jean Sherrard)

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Seattle Now & Then: North Edgewater

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THEN: The Edgewater plat (1889) and neighborhood was named for Chicago’s Edgewater Beach, which was developed as an exclusive Chicago suburb in the mid-1880s. This view looks northeast from the rear of the Swedish Immanuel Church at the northeast corner of 40th Street and Whitman Avenue. It dates from 1907 or 08. The southeast corner of Lincoln High School, which opened in 1907, is just evident on the far left Wallingford horizon. (Photo courtesy of Dan Kerlee)
NOW: Too get around some trees Jean Sherrard moved a few feet east of Oakes’ prospect, but he too took his photograph from the rear of a church. (now by Jean Sherrard)
NOW: Too get around some trees Jean Sherrard moved a few feet east of Oakes’ prospect, but he too took his photograph from the rear of a church. (now by Jean Sherrard)

Postcard photographer M. L. Oakes has captioned his subject “Edgewater looking N.E.” and yet many, perhaps most, of those now living in these blocks will, I’d bet, have no inkling that they live in Edgewater.  Some will put themselves in Fremont, others in Wallingford.  Only a few will prefer Freeford or Wallingmont.  In spite of this confusion, we thank Oakes, for it is rare indeed to find a historic glimpse into any part of old and now largely forgotten Edgewater, especially this extended part of it north of 40th Street.

Woodland Park Avenue is in the foreground, and you can make out the Green Lake trolley tracks running to either side of the darker strip of weeds allowed to grow in the middle of the avenue.   Near the scene’s center, 41st Street climbs into Wallingford east from Stone Way, which can also be glimpsed center-left, and a portion of the intervening, and appropriately named, Midvale Avenue is evident center-right.  Not more than ten years before Oakes recorded this subject a trout stream flowed through this vale south to Lake Union.

The Edgewood neighborhood was first platted at the north shore of Lake Union in June 1889, soon after Seattle’s “great fire.”  Perhaps the partners in this platting, north shore farmer William Ashworth and one time Seattle Mayor Corliss P. Stone, figured that fire-frightened citizens combined with the flood of immigrants, would bring home builders to the north shore of Lake Union.  Whatever, they were right.  It helped that since 1887 one could easily get here on the Seattle Lake Shore and Eastern Railroad’s commuter service. Also the electric trolleys that first reached Fremont in 1890 over a Westlake trestle continued north to Green Lake, here along Woodland Park Ave.

The home on the right is not among the many homes In Oakes’ view that survive a century later, but the large box, far left, did make it.  It was built in 1906, 39 feet wide, and by the mid-1930s another symmetrical 24 feet was added at the rear.  Within then were five apartments, one of them with five rooms.

WEB EXTRAS

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An odd church roof stands between Jean and Aurora

Jean turned his camera to the southeast and took a couple more shots through a veritable mare’s nest of wires, combined below into a panorama.

The rest of the view
The rest of the view

In our next blog post (see below), Paul offers a detailed examination of photographer Oakes’ somewhat narrower southeasterly view.

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And near the end of a long and fruitful day, Paul pauses to admire a spectacular tomato bruschetta at his beloved Ivar’s.