Seattle Now & Then: Gethsemane Lutheran

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: Swedish Lutheran (Gethsemane) Church’s second sanctuary at the northeast corner of Ninth Avenue and Steward Street circa 1920, photo by Klaes Lindquist.  (Courtesy, Swedish Club)
THEN: Swedish Lutheran (Gethsemane) Church’s second sanctuary at the northeast corner of Ninth Avenue and Steward Street circa 1920, photo by Klaes Lindquist. (Courtesy, Swedish Club)
NOW: A cross high on the west façade of Gethsemane Lutheran Church’s new home, stands atop five floors of low-income housing and three for the church, including the Rainbow Chapel, the stained-glass lighted chapel at the corner.
NOW: A cross high on the west façade of Gethsemane Lutheran Church’s new home, stands atop five floors of low-income housing and three for the church, including the Rainbow Chapel, the stained-glass lighted chapel at the corner.

Now one hundred and thirty years old, the oldest Lutheran congregation in Seattle has moved only once, and that only eight blocks. It has, however, had four sanctuaries, and in Jean Sherrard’s kitty-corner recording we can see the latest of these with the first three floors serving the congregation and the top five affordable housing. Abutting to the south (right) is the surviving chancel of the third sanctuary, which was dedicated in 1954. The prospect looks east across the intersection of 9th Avenue and Stewart Street. 

Near the lower- left corner the first sanctuary of Swedish Lutheran sits two lots north of the northeast corner of Third Avenue and Pike Street.  The Territorial University sits on Denny Knoll, upper-left, and the extended ridge of Beacon Hill holds most of the horizon.
Near the lower- left corner the first sanctuary of Swedish Lutheran sits two lots north of the northeast corner of Third Avenue and Pike Street. The Territorial University sits on Denny Knoll, upper-left, and the extended ridge of Beacon Hill holds most of the horizon, ca. 1885.

The Swedish Lutherans dedicated their first church in 1885 on the east side of Third Avenue, one lot north of Pike Street.   It was the southern slope of Denny Hill and the neighborhood was then decidedly residential. By 1901, when the congregation moved those eight blocks to this corner, their first location was rapidly turning commercial, and the sale of that property helped finance the changes.

Gethsemane Lutheran on June 4, 1933.
Gethsemane Lutheran on June 4, 1933.

With its first and only move the church avoided the many years of confusion wrought by the Denny Hill Regrade. It did not, however, escape the regrading of Stewart Street. In 1910 the city instructed the church to lower their Gothic sanctuary fourteen feet.  The results of that cutting are shown here (in the featured photo at the top) on both the far right, with an exposed hill, and far left, with the long steep stairway to the front door of the church’s parsonage, home of its then pastor, Martin L. Larson. 

A Times clip from June 8, 1907.
A Times clip from June 8, 1907.

The Steward Street regrade put the growing congregation more emphatically “on the map” when the improved Stewart was linked to Eastlake Avenue, making a joined arterial that was one of the city’s primary routes to the north.  (On a 1916 map of the city’s auto routes, both Stewart and Eastlake are emphasized with a widened dark line and bold lettering.)  The building in 1927 of the city’s Central Stage Terminal (Greyhound Depot), across 9th Avenue from the church, also emphasized the centrality of Gethsemane’s location.  [See the links below and Jean’s added photos there as well for photographs and stories featuring the depot.]

Detail from a 1916 Seattle map.
Detail from a 1916 Seattle map.
A Seattle Times clipping from Oct. 26, 1935 describing Gethsemane's golden anniversary.
A Seattle Times clipping from Oct. 26, 1935 describing Gethsemane’s golden anniversary with a little pastoral counseling to the side.  CLICK TWICE to ENLARGE!

 The 1921 dedication of Gethsemane’s Lutheran Hospice for Girls on Capitol Hill prefigured Mary’s Place, the day shelter for women and children that are also tenants of the new sanctuary. Other “open and affirming” Gethsemane services include the meals programs of Hope Center,   

From May 1, 1928
From May 1, 1928
The Sundsten Trio
The Sundsten Trio
A Seattle Times clip from Nov. 13, 1932, which names the members of the family trio. (Courtesy, John Sundsten)
A Seattle Times clip from Nov. 13, 1932, which names the members of the family trio. (Courtesy, John Sundsten)

The featured photograph of Gethsemane’s second sanctuary at the top was copied from an album of photos taken by Klaes Lindquist, and shared with us by the Swedish Club. It dates from about 1920, a year in which the city directory lists twenty-two Lutheran churches, six of them in Ballard and five, including Gethsemane, here in the greater and then quite Scandi-Cascade Neighborhood.  

Cover to the congregation's centennial histoy.
Cover to the congregation’s centennial history.

WEB EXTRAS

Let me add a few snaps here which illustrate a few of the vast changes underway around 9th and Stewart:

Gethsemane Lutheran on the distant right looking down the 9th Avenue canyon.
Gethsemane Lutheran on the distant left looking down the 9th Avenue canyon.
Jesus of the downtown corridor
Jesus of the downtown corridor
Funny story: about 10 years ago, before its newest structure, Gethsemane Lutheran's statue of Jesus was made of crumbling concrete. My son Noel and his cousin Kalan were climbing around the statue and broke off Jesus's finger! After confessing to the church secretary, they glued it back on with eternal epoxy...
Funny story: about 10 years ago, before its newest structural incarnation, Gethsemane Lutheran’s statue of Jesus was made of crumbling concrete. My son Noel and his cousin Kalan, not numbered amongst the faithful, were clambering around the statue and accidentally broke off Jesus’s finger! After confessing to the church secretary, they glued it back on with eternal epoxy…
Farewell to the Stewart Street Grayhound Station - soon to be replaced with canyon walls.
Farewell to the Stewart Street Greyhound Station – soon to be replaced with canyon walls.
The last 'Bus'
The last ‘Bus’

Anything to add, boys?   Certainly.  More links from Ron Edge and pixs and clips from our robust archives, and all in sympathy to this week’s primary subjects:  Swedes (some of them Lutherans), and this interstitial neighborhood on the fringe of downtown.   First, eleven links to past features, which will include their own links and those theirs . . .  [Nifty “now” Jean.]

THEN: The scene looks north through a skyline of steeples toward the Cascade neighborhood and Lake Union, ca. 1923.

THEN: The home at bottom right looks across Madison Street (out of frame) to Central School. The cleared intersection of Spring Street and Seventh Avenue shows on the right.

THEN: The Ballard Public Library in 1903-4, and here the Swedish Baptist Church at 9th and Pine, 1904-5, were architect Henderson Ryan’s first large contracts after the 20 year old southerner first reached Seattle in 1898.   Later he would also design both the Liberty and Neptune Theatres, the latter still projecting films in the University District. (Photo courtesy Lawton Gowey)

THEN: Werner Lenggenhager's recording of the old St. Vinnie's on Lake Union's southwest shore in the 1950s should remind a few readers of the joys that once were theirs while searching and picking in that exceedingly irregular place.

THEN: As explained in the accompanying story the cut corner in this search-lighted photo of the “first-nighters” lined up for the March 1, 1928 opening of the Seattle Theatre at 9th and Pine was intended. Courtesy Ron Phillips

5th-ave-car-barns-then-mr

THEN:  Built in the mid-1880s at 1522 7th Avenue, the Anthony family home was part of a building boom developing this north end neighborhood then into a community of clapboards.  Here 70 years later it is the lone survivor.  (Photo by Robert O. Shaw)

THEN: Beginning with the Reynolds, three hotels have taken tenancy in this ornate three-story brick block at the northeast corner of Boren Avenue and Pike Street. (Courtesy Lawton Gowey)

THEN:  This detail from the prolific local photographer Asahel Curtis’s photograph of the Smith/Rininger home at the northwest corner of Columbia Street and Summit Avenue dates from the early twentieth century when motorcars, rolling or parked, were still very rare on the streets of Seattle, including these on First Hill.  (Courtesy, Historic Seattle)

======

FOLLOWS – A FEW PAST FEATURES SCANNED FROM CLIPPINGS

First appeared in Pacific, April 12, 1987.
First appeared in Pacific, April 12, 1987.

===

Looking east up Stewart and Olive from the New Washington Hotel at 2nd and Steward, ca. 1909.   Gethsemane Lutheran can be found left-of-center.
Looking east up Stewart and Olive from the New Washington Hotel at 2nd and Steward, ca. 1909. Gethsemane Lutheran, washed in white, can be found left-of-center.
First appeared in Pacific, March 24, 1985 - gosh thirty years ago!
First appeared in Pacific, March 24, 1985 – gosh thirty years ago!  Click to Enlarge.  Note that Gethsemane can be found here as well, but no Westlake as yet cutting through the grid.

===

Another of other depot.  This first appeared in Pacific on July 30, 1998.  Rail fans will find Warren Wing posing in the "now."
Another of the depot. This first appeared in Pacific on July 30, 1998. Rail fans will find Warren Wing posing in the “now.”

===

CONCLUDING WITH MORE LUTHERANS – German ones.

Appeared in Pacific on August 21, 1994.
Zion and Gethsemane, back-to-back.  Appeared in Pacific on August 21, 1994.

Clip-ZION-Lutheran-WEB

 

Seattle Now & Then: Norway Hall

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: The now century-old Norway Hall at the corner of Boren Avenue and Virginia Street opened in 1915, on May 17, Norwegian Independence Day.  (Courtesy, Nordic Heritage Museum)
THEN: The now century-old Norway Hall at the corner of Boren Avenue and Virginia Street opened in 1915, on May 17, Norwegian Independence Day. (Courtesy, Nordic Heritage Museum)
NOW: Since the Sons and Daughters moved on to larger clubhouses, their first Norway Hall has given shelter to the Painter’s Union and dance clubs, including the City Beat Disco in the 1980s and the Timberline in the 1990s, and now as Cornish School’s Raisbeck Hall.
NOW: Since the Sons and Daughters moved on to larger clubhouses, their first Norway Hall has given shelter to the Painter’s Union and dance clubs, including the City Beat Disco in the 1980s and the Timberline in the 1990s, and now as Cornish School’s Raisbeck Hall.

clip-OUR-HOME-NO.-3-postcard-WEB

x-1915-small-januarygroundbreaking-WEB

Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry, aka MOHAI
Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry, aka MOHAI
Daughters of Norway at Norway all with some Sons or suitors in suits or uniforms.
Daughters of Norway at Norway Hall with some Sons or suitors in suits or uniforms.

Once upon a time dragons wagged their long tongues from open jaws on the roof of Norway Hall in Seattle’s Cascade Neighborhood.  The hall’s sponsors, the Daughters and Sons of Norway, respectively the Valkyrien and Leif Erikson Lodges, dedicated their new hall in 1915, on May 17, Norwegian Constitution Day.  

Dennis Andersen, one of our distinguished historians of Northwest architecture, and himself of Norwegian descent, notes that the hall’s architect, the native Norwegian Englehart Sonnichsen, “knew the revival modes of his country very well.” Andersen continues, “In the 1880s and 1890s, as Norway was working toward independence from Sweden, art and architecture trends lifted up traditional folk art forms — some of it rather fanciful.  The dragon-shaped eaves of Sonnichsen’s Norway Hall recall this so-called ‘dragon style’ (dragestil).  It was commonly used on resort hotels, pavilions, and restaurants.”  (And, Andersen notes, on the Andersen family silver.)

For example, on a visit to Norway Christine Anderson photographed an example of traditional stave construction, above.  Below, she has complimented (or repeated) the old with the "new" from 1915.
For example, on a visit to Norway Christine Anderson photographed the traditional stave construction, above. Below, she has complimented (or repeated) the old with the “new” from 1915.
Norway Hall now, a detail photographed by Christine Anderson, Historian for the Leif Erikson Lodge 2-001, Sons of Norway.
Norway Hall now, a detail photographed by Christine Anderson, Historian for the Leif Erikson Lodge 2-001, Sons of Norway.

Here (at the top) on an early photograph of the hall, an unnamed retouch artist has enhanced its surrounds with lawns sown with grass in place of a clutter of other structures (aside from the roof of a modest home across Denny Way behind the trees on the far right). The national flags of Norway and the United States have been rendered to flutter artfully, lifted by a southeasterly breeze.  The painted stones beside the sidewalk, far left, resemble stacks of Norwegian rye bread more than river rocks. 

Although the timing for this portrait of Norway Hall must be estimated from the motorcar park in front of it, in 1915 the hall's location was already surrounded by a developed Cascade Neighborhood, like this one.
Although the timing for this portrait of Norway Hall may be estimated from the motorcar park in front of it – perhaps in the 1920s -, in 1915 the hall’s location was already surrounded by a developed Cascade Neighborhood, like this one.

The architect’s brother, Yngvar, adorned the interior of Norway Hall with murals depicting several sagas of Norse history, including the discovery of Vinland – North America – by the lodge’s namesake, Leif Erikson, nearly 500 years before Christopher Columbus reached The Bahamas.  The U.S. Postal System agreed, issuing a six-cent stamp in 1968, commemorating the Icelandic explorer’s Newfoundland (it is thought) landing.    

While we hope to include the enduring murals as an addendum to this blog, here is one of the "missing murals," also on Norwegian subjects and styles.  Here the artist had leaned his work again the outside wall of, perhaps, his studio for a recording before delivering the mural to the hall.  If he did.  These "missing murals" are also, it seems, mysterious.
While we hope to include later the moved and yet  enduring murals as an addendum to this blog, here is one of the “missing murals,” also on Norwegian subjects and styles. Here the artist leaned his work against the outside wall of, perhaps, his studio for a recording before delivering the art to the hall. If he did. These “missing murals” are also, it seems, mysterious.
Another of the missing murals.
Another of the missing murals.
And another with the same temporary supporting wall.
And another with the same temporary supporting wall.
May these have been for another hall?
We wonder, may these have been for another hall?

Today at 2015 Boren Avenue the Norwegians and their dragons are long gone.  After selling their hall in the late 1940s, the growing Sons and Daughters twice moved to new quarters, first to Lower Queen Anne in 1951 and later in 1986 to Ballard, both times carrying their murals with them.  In the early 1970s the old Norway Hall barely

A TIMES clipping from Nov. 12, 1972 most likely helped save the Hall.
This TIMES clipping from Nov. 12, 1972 most likely helped save the Hall. (Click to ENLARGE)

escaped being razed by a developer, who explained “there is pressure for more parking in the area.”  It was saved, however, and is now Raisbeck Hall, the performing arts venue on Cornish School of the Arts’ main campus.

CLICK TO ENLARGE
CLICK TO ENLARGE

clip-Our-Homes-No.-2-WEB

ABOVE AND BELOW: complimenting clippings from the Oct. 19, 1975 issue of The Seattle Times.
ABOVE:  complimenting clippings from the Oct. 19, 1975 issue of The Seattle Times.  CLICK TO ENLARGE

WEB EXTRAS

Noe å legge til, gutter ? (Anything to add, boys?)

Ja Jean. Med hjelp igjen (og igjen) fra Ron Edge og mer hjelp fra Christine Anderson, historiker for Leiv Eiriksson Lodge 2-001, Sønner av Norge, og også fra Fred Poyner IV, samlinger manager på Nordic Heritage Museum. Vi har lagt ved et par linker og tidligere funksjoner som liksom er knyttet til kjennetegnet Norge Hus første dedikerte i Seattles Cascade Neighborhood 100 år siden, noe som sikkert har noe å gjøre med at vi viser det seg nå. Vi kaster også i noen dansker, men ingen svensker, med vilje. Vi lagrer dem til senere. Vi må også takke Google Translate, for selv om både du og jeg er velfylt med Scandi-gener, verken vi lese eller snakke norsk til godt. Vel, du kan bli med igjen, “Snakk for deg selv Paul.” La de som er kjent med norsk dommer kapasiteten til Googles innsats.

x-Postcard-Norway-flag-1905-WEB

Yes Jean. With help again (and again) from Ron Edge and more help from Christine Anderson, historian for Leif Erikson Lodge 2-001, Sons of Norway, and also from Fred Poyner IV, Collections manager at the Nordic Heritage Museum.   We have attached a few links and past features that somehow relate to the featured Norway House first dedicated in Seattle’s Cascade Neighborhood 100 years ago, which surely has something to do with why we are showing it off now.   We also throw in a few Danes but no Swedes, intentionally. We are saving them for later. We also need to thank Google Translate, for although both you, Jean,  and I are well-stocked with Scandi-genes, we neither read nor speak Norwegian so well.  You might rejoin, “Speak for yourself Paul.” Let those familiar with Norwegian judge the capacities of Google’s efforts.

THEN:  Built in 1888-89 at the northeast corner of Fourth Avenue and Pine Street, the then named Norwegian-Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church marked the southeast corner of Denny Hill.  Eventually the lower land to the east of the church (here behind it) would be filled, in part, with hill dirt scraped and eroded from North Seattle lots to the north and west of this corner.  (Courtesy, Denny Park Lutheran Church)

yesler-way-umpire-day

Then: Photographed from an upper story of the Ford Factory at Fairview Avenue and Valley Street, the evidence of Seattle's explosive boom years can be seen on every shore of Lake Union, ca. 1920. Courtesy of MOHAI

THEN: The scene looks north through a skyline of steeples toward the Cascade neighborhood and Lake Union, ca. 1923.

MINOR-&-THOMAS-P-patch-THEN-mr

=====

snt. Immanuel-Luth-CascadeWEB

First appeared in Pacific, Sept. 11, 1988.
First appeared in Pacific, Sept. 11, 1988. CLICK TO ENLARGE

 ===

FIRST  appeared in Pacific on May 26, 1991.
FIRST appeared in Pacific on May 26, 1991.
Lawton Gowey took this sometime in the 1970s - or I did.  I don't know for sure.  I remember a new paint job on the nine domes and the rest when I lived in the neighborhood in 1977 to 1980.
Lawton Gowey took this sometime in the 1970s – or I did. I don’t know for sure. I remember a new paint job on the nine domes and the rest when I lived in the neighborhood in 1977 to 1980.

===

CAPITOL HILL & The CASCADE PLATEAU from  DENNY HILL

Courtesy, Lawton Gowey, who did not record it, but collected it.
Courtesy, Lawton Gowey, who did not record it, but collected it.
N.P.Railroad photographer, Jay Haynes look northeast from Denny Hill to Capitol Hill with the Cascade Neighborhood plateau below it.   Lenora Street descends on the left from Denny Way.   A decade later Norway Hall was built near where the larger home stands to the right of the pump house.
N.P.Railroad photographer, Jay Haynes looks northeast from Denny Hill to Capitol Hill with the Cascade Neighborhood plateau below it. Lenora Street descends on the left from Denny Way. A decade later Norway Hall was built near where the larger home stands to the right of the pump house.
Another pan from Denny Hill to the northeast.  Stewart Street is on the right and Fourth Avenue at the bottom of the frame.   Lenora Street can be found in this A. Curtis shot as well.  It is left of center, again heading down the hill from the Cascade Plateau to Terry Avenue.   Wallingford is on the far left horizon. (Courtesy, Washington State Museum, Tacoma)
Another pan from Denny Hill to the northeast. Stewart Street is on the right and Fourth Avenue at the bottom of the frame. Lenora Street can be found in this A. Curtis shot as well. It is left of center, again heading down the hill from the Cascade Plateau to Terry Avenue. Wallingford is on the far left horizon. (Courtesy, Washington State Museum, Tacoma)
The dark cedar roof of Norway Hall can be found here very near the center of this ca. 1940 aerial. (We have cropped  it to put it there.)  Westlake is on the left and Fairview, also heading north to the north shore of Lake Union, is right-of-center.
The dark cedar roof of Norway Hall can be found very near the center of this ca. 1940 aerial. (We have cropped it to put it there.) Westlake is on the left and Fairview, also heading north to the north shore of Lake Union, is right-of-center.  Thanks to Ron Edge and his collection of aerials for this one.

===

Finally, for now, Whitewalls somewhere in the Cascade Neighborhood, ca. 1950.  (Courtesy, University of Washington Architectural Library)
Finally, for now, Whitewalls somewhere in the Cascade Neighborhood, ca. 1950. (Courtesy, University of Washington Architectural Library)

Seattle Now & Then: The Louch Grocery on First Avenue

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: Charles Louch’s grocery on First Avenue, north of Union Street, opened in the mid-1880s and soon prospered.  It is possible – perhaps probable – that one of the six characters posing here is Louch – more likely one of the two suited ones on the right than the aproned workers on the left.  (Courtesy RON EDGE)
THEN: Charles Louch’s grocery on First Avenue, north of Union Street, opened in the mid-1880s and soon prospered. It is possible – perhaps probable – that one of the six characters posing here is Louch – more likely one of the two suited ones on the right than the aproned workers on the left. (Courtesy RON EDGE)
NOW: The sidewalk sites of Charles Louch’s storefronts are now held by tenants of the Harold Poll building, which was built in 1910 as the Hancock Building.
NOW: The sidewalk sites of Charles Louch’s storefronts are now held by tenants of the Harold Poll building, which was built in 1910 as the Hancock Building.

Englishman Charles Louch first crossed the Seattle waterfront, it seems, in 1885, and for many reasons, including the “bag of money” he reportedly carried, prospered and stayed for eighteen years.  He returned to England in 1903 with enough American assets to purchase an estate near Southhampton, which he shared with his two single sisters. 

A look directly across Front Street (First Ave.) and the Front Street tracks.  (Courtesy, MOHAI)
A look directly across Front Street (First Ave.) and the Front Street tracks. (Courtesy, MOHAI)
The Louch offerings seen from the front door.  (Courtesy MOHAI)
The Louch offerings seen from the front door. (Courtesy MOHAI)

Louch first opened a stand for “fancy fruits” on the east side of Front Street (First Avenue) but soon expanded his fare to the “cigars, tobacco, groceries and provisions” that are indicated on the sign above his front door located on the third lot north of Union Street. It is these “groceries and provisions” that are first noted in the 1885-86 Polk City Directory, where Louch is listed as one of twenty-two Seattle grocers. 

In the Polk’s citizen section, Louch is recorded as living at the same address, almost surely in the back of the store.  Based on the evidence provided by the 1888 Sanborn real estate map, Louch later installed both a “Sausage Room” and a “Smoke House” in his former living quarters.  Louch’s ‘1888 Brand’ smoked hams were a long-time favorite and not just locally.  During the Alaska Gold Rush, beginning in the late 1890s, many of the hams were shipped north. 

A rare look at the waterfront ca. 1897 with the Hotel York escaping the horizon on the right, at the northwest corner of Pike and Front/First Ave.   The Augustine
A rare look at the waterfront ca. 1897 with the Hotel York escaping the horizon on the right, at the northwest corner of Pike and Front/First Ave. The Louch Augustine & Company waterfront warehouse is on the left.   Pike Street climbs the hill as an irregular path.   (Courtesy Ron Edge) CLICK TO ENLARGE

In 1888 Louch began promoting his hams by distributing to his customers a mounted photograph of his store, as seen from an upper window of a nearby building at Front and Pike.  This second photo featured a panorama of Seattle rising above a roof top  sign reading “Chas Louch” and running at a right angle to Front Street.  Set on the crest of the roof, the corner of that sign is barely seen here above the “cigars and tobacco” sign that faces the street. 

The store's larger rooftop sign and much of the First Hill horizon from a prospect south of Pike and overlooking Front Street in 1888-9.
The store’s larger rooftop sign and much of the First Hill horizon from a prospect south of Pike and overlooking Front Street in 1888-9.  Rolland Denny’s home is at the northeast corner of Front and Union, lower-right.   This first appeared in Pacific on Oct. 4, 1987 and was later included in one of the three “Seattle Now and Then” books, all of them collections of the features.
The Louch credit can be carefully read in the sign above the ham-burdened wagon.  The original print was poorly fixed.  (Courtesy, MOHAI)
The Louch credit can be carefully read in the sign above the ham-burdened wagon.  The Louch wagon is either in a local parade or making a very big delivery of 1888 hams.  Someday some bright young scholar will figure out what corner this is.  The original print was poorly fixed. (Courtesy, MOHAI)

The city’s great fire of 1889 was also good to Louch and his hams and sausages.   As the fire moved north up the waterfront and Front Street it was stopped less than two blocks south of Louch’s grocery.  About one-half of the 36 groceries listed in the year’s city directory we consumed. Also in 1889 Louch moved into a mansion-sized Beacon Hill home he had built on Othello Avenue overlooking Rainier Valley. 

The Colman building at the southwest corner of Marion and Columbia with the Augustine and Kyer storefront near the middle  of the block and the store's delivery buggies posing in front.  (Courtesy, MOHAI)
The Colman building at the southwest corner of Marion and Columbia with the Augustine and Kyer storefront near the middle of the block and the store’s delivery buggies posing in front. (Courtesy, MOHAI)
The Colman Bldg first appear in Pacific on March 1, 1987.
The Colman Bldg first appear in Pacific on March 1, 1987.  CLICK TO ENLARGE & READ

After partnering in 1889 with M.B. Augustine, a traveling food salesman from Nevada, the ambitious pair moved into the much grander post-fire quarters of the Colman Building, (still at First Avenue and Columbia Street.)  There they became famous for their “upscale” specialty foods and the dozen wagons needed to make free deliveries throughout the city.  After Louch returned to England, Augustine took on a new partner and the company was renamed Augustine and Kyer.  It grew to five locations, with the last one, in the University District, holding on through the Great Depression of the 1930s.    

Christmas inside Augustine & Kyer.  (Courtesy MOHAI)
Christmas inside Augustine & Kyer. (Courtesy MOHAI)
Care for a cookie from Augustine and Kyle's formidable display topped by a happy boy and a happy girl.  (Courtesy MOHAI)
Care for a cookie from Augustine and Kyle’s formidable display topped by a happy boy and a happy girl? (Courtesy MOHAI)

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, boys?  Yes Jean, more of the neighborhood and also a look up Front Street from Pioneer Square, which is the second Edge-Link that Ron has put in place immediately below.   After Ron’s links we’ll pull a few clips from past “now and then” features.  They are also from the neighborhood.  Well Jean, you know this well, for this week it was you who did the scanning of the clips having nearly completed your inventory of all 1700-plus features on the way to publishing later this year another collection – which might even be permitted the cheesy title “100 Best.”

THEN: The driver, lower left, leads his team towards First Avenue up a planked incline on Madison Street.  (Courtesy MOHAI)

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: During the few years of the Klondike Gold Rush, the streets of Seattle’s business district were crowded with outfitters selling well-packed foods and gear to thousands of traveling men heading north to strike it rich – they imagined.  (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)

THEN: The ruins left by Seattle’s Great Fire of June 6, 1889, included a large neighborhood of warehouses and factories built on timber quays over the tides.  Following the fire the quays were soon restored with new capping and planking.  A close look on the far-right will reveal some of this construction on the quays underway.  (Courtesy, Seattle Public Library)

THEN: In this April morning record of the 1975 “Rain or Shine Public Market Paint-in,” above the artists, restoration work has begun with the gutting of the Corner Market Building.  (Photo by Frank Shaw)

 =====

The home next door to the south, the Rolland Denny home at the northeast corner of First and Union.  First appeared in Pacific December 30, 2001.
The home next door to the south, the Rolland Denny home at the northeast corner of First and Union. First appeared in Pacific December 30, 2001.

===

Across Union Street from Rolland, his parents, Arthur and Mary Denny's home at the southeast corner of Front (First) and Union.
Across Union Street from Rolland, his parents, Arthur and Mary Denny’s home at the southeast corner of Front (First) and Union.

===

Looking north on First across Union Street,
Looking north on First across Union Street,  The Rolland Denny home is behind the stylish couple and the Louch storefront up the way.  First appeared in Pacific, April 18, 1993.

===

Z-YMCA-1st-ave-WEB

===

 First appeared in Pacific, March 13, 2005.
Princess Angeline resting and/or posing on the boardwalk west of Front and Pike.  First appeared in Pacific, March 13, 2005.

=====

EIGHT PAGES from the AUGUSTINE & KYER BULLETIN, from 1912.  click to enlarge

A&k-bulliten-jan-1912-web

A-&-K-JUNE-BULLITEN-WEB

A-&-K-AUGUST-BULLITEN-1912-WEB

A&K-BULLITEN-Autumn-1912-WEB

Seattle Now & Then: The Sinking Ship

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN:  In Lawton Gowey’s 1961 pairing, the Smith Tower (1914) was the tallest building in Seattle, and the Pioneer Square landmark Seattle Hotel (1890) had lost most of its top floor.  (by Lawton Gowey)
THEN: In Lawton Gowey’s 1961 pairing, the Smith Tower (1914) was the tallest building in Seattle, and the Pioneer Square landmark Seattle Hotel (1890) had lost most of its top floor. (by Lawton Gowey)
NOW:  The mockingly named “Sinking Ship Garage” replaced the ornate brick Seattle Hotel with a concrete garage capped by a railing of bent pipes that resemble a row of basket handles.
NOW: The mockingly named “Sinking Ship Garage” replaced the ornate brick Seattle Hotel with a concrete garage capped by a railing of bent pipes that resemble a row of basket handles.

Lawton Gowey was a regular visitor to the demolition scene of the Seattle Hotel. His collection of Kodachrome slides records nearly the entire process of the destruction of the 1890 landmark. Gowey dated this slide June 8, 1961. The demolition work began with the interior on the third of April, and here, two months later, most of the top floor is gone.

Rubble dropped from the roof of the Seattle Hotel during the 1949 earthquake.  (Courtesy, Seattle Post-Intelligencer)
Rubble dropped from the roof of the Seattle Hotel during the 1949 earthquake. (Courtesy, Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

The removal of the ornate cornice at the top of the five and one-half story landmark got an early start with the city’s 1949 earthquake. For safety, and probably for economy too, much of it was removed following the quake. Still, the hotel stayed opened until the spring of 1960, when its closure was announced. It was widely assumed that it would soon be razed – not renovated. The same was expected for its then still on the skids Pioneer Square, the city’s most historic neighborhood.

When new in 1890  the future Occidental and finally Seattle Hotel was named the Collins Building for its owner.    Here James Street is to the left and Mill Street (Yesler Way) to the right.
When new in 1890 the future Occidental and finally Seattle Hotel was named the Collins Building for its owner. Here, and in the four photos below,  James Street is to the left and Mill Street (Yesler Way) to the right.

Seattle-Hotel-early-in-its-demolution-too-WEB

Yesler-Way-from-First-AVe-w-S-Hotel-stereoWEB

Lawton Gowey's record of the garage and a few of its neighbors on March 20, 1974.
Lawton Gowey’s record of the garage and a few of its neighbors on March 20, 1974.

Citizen response, however, was surprising. In an attempt to save the hotel, a local cadre of preservationists quickly formed. Although that battle was lost, the enthusiasts for local heritage won the war by saving the neighborhood. The city’s new Department of Community Development, the DCD, formed the Pioneer Square Historic District in 1970.

The Logan Building at the northeast corner of Fifth Avenue and Union Street.
The Logan Building at the northeast corner of Fifth Avenue and Union Street.  Seattle’s first Glass Curtain modern.
A model for a National Bank of Commerce designed by Mandeville and Berge, architects for the "Sinking Ship Garage."
A model for a National Bank of Commerce designed by Mandeville and Berge, architects for the “Sinking Ship Garage.”  Pulled from the Seattle Times for Feb. 26, 1967.

By this time the four-floor parking lot that was built on the hotel’s flatiron footprint was commonly called the “Sinking Ship Garage.” It is still one of our best local jokes. The garage’s architect-engineers, Gilbert Mandeville and Gudmund Berge, were fresh off their 1959 success as local consultants for the Logan Building at Fifth Avenue and Union Street, the city’s first glass curtain box. Here, in Pioneer Square, they added what they and its owners considered a compliment to the historic neighborhood: a basket-handle shaped railing made of pipe, a kind of undulating cornice, that ran along the top of the concrete garage.

The garage's basket handles aligned with those on the Interurban Building at the southeast corner of Yesler Way and Occidental Avenue.
The garage’s basket handles aligned with those on the Interurban Building at the southeast corner of Yesler Way and Occidental Avenue.
Two more sympathies for the bent pipes on top of the Sinking Ship: the windows in the Mutual Life Building, left-center, and the Pioneer Building, upper -right.  Courtesy Lawton Gowey, April 21, 1976
Two more sympathies for the bent pipes on top of the Sinking Ship: the windows in the Mutual Life Building, left-center, and the Pioneer Building, upper -right. Courtesy Lawton Gowey, April 21, 1976

Lawton Gowey loved the Smith Tower. His juxtaposition of the well-wrought tower, the injured hotel, and the wrecker’s crane is at once elegant and ambivalent.

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, lads?  Golly Jean, yes.  Ron Edge has put up two links to past features.  Both are rich with references to this triangle.  Following that are few more relevant clips cut from past Pacifics.

THEN: Seen here in 1887 through the intersection of Second Avenue and Yesler Way, the Occidental Hotel was then easily the most distinguished in Seattle.  (Courtesy Museum of History and Industry)

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)

=====

Pergola-1-hub-left

Appeared first in Pacific for Sept. 26, 1982
Appeared first in Pacific for Sept. 26, 1982  [Click TWICE to ENLARGE]
===

Occidental-Hotel-left-WEB

Appeared in Pacific first on November 20, 1983.
Appeared in Pacific first on November 20, 1983.  [Click TWICE  to enlarge]
=====

First appeared in Pacific on July 13, 1986.
First appeared in Pacific on July 13, 1986.

=====

Appeared first as a Historylink demonstration in Pacific on July 19, 1998.  I will add that the founding of Historylink still feels novel to me, and the notion or evidence again that we first did all that in the late 1990s has an uncanny edge for me.  And nostalgic.
Appeared first as a Historylink demonstration in Pacific on July 19, 1998. I will add that the founding of Historylink still feels novel, and the notion or evidence again that we first started all that in the late 1990s has an uncanny edge for me. And nostalgic.  [Click twice to enlarge]
=====

First appeared in Pacific, Oct. 31, 1999
First appeared in Pacific, Oct. 31, 1999

====

First appeared in Pacific, June 6, 2004
First appeared in Pacific, June 6, 2004

=====

Circa 1984, looking west from near Second Ave. along the south facade of the Pioneer Square Garage, AKA the "Sinking Ship."  That's all folks!
Circa 1984, looking west from near Second Ave. along the south facade of the Pioneer Square Garage, AKA the “Sinking Ship.” That’s all folks!

Seattle Now & Then: Klondike Fever on First

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: During the few years of the Klondike Gold Rush, the streets of Seattle’s business district were crowded with outfitters selling well-packed foods and gear to thousands of traveling men heading north to strike it rich – they imagined.  (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)
THEN: During the few years of the Klondike Gold Rush, the streets of Seattle’s business district were crowded with outfitters selling well-packed foods and gear to thousands of traveling men heading north to strike it rich – they imagined. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)
NOW: The Henry M. Jackson Federal Building filled the block in 1974
NOW: The Henry M. Jackson Federal Building filled the block in 1974

Beginning in 1897 and continuing into the twentieth century, Seattle was in the golden grip of “Klondike Fever,” a hysteria promoted by the Chamber of Commerce and its agent Erastus Brainard, perhaps the highest of hucksters in our history.  Through every publication he could charm, Brainerd linked the gold fields of the North, waiting to be gathered by shovel and/or pan, with Seattle. “To speak of one is to speak of the other.”

A Rainier Club portrait of Erastus
A Rainier Club portrait of Erastus Brainerd by Ed. Curtis.  (Courtesy, Rainier Club)

Here two teams and their drivers pose on the northbound tracks and cable slot of the Front Street Cable Railway. The equine posers are backed by an array of businesses with signs that are both freshly painted and ambitious.  For instance, add a Thedinga Hardware to a

Clipped from The Times for Sept. 16, 1897.
Clipped from The Times for Sept. 16, 1897.

Columbia Grocery and you get an Alaska Outfitters.  Business district streets were lined with similar opportunists. The likely date is 1898, a year after the instantly famous steamer Portland arrived on the waterfront with its “ton of gold.” 

The Portland in port in 1897, having returned with its "ton of gold" to the Schwabacher Wharf
The Portland in port in 1897, having returned with its “ton of gold” to the Schwabacker Wharf with the Pike Street dock to the far (north) side.

 This plenitude of miners’ supplies filled many of the sidewalks on Front (First Avenue) and Commercial Streets (First Avenue S.): mostly bags stuffed, for example, with evaporated foods, boots, pots, picks, slabs of bacon, lentils, and several variations on corn (corn meal, pop corn and corn cob pipes at 35 cents a dozen).  Some of this piling of sacks can be seen on the far left and also behind the wagons.  Two blocks south at Columbia Street, the sidewalk in front of the Toklas Singerman Department Store was piled ten-feet high, eleven-feet wide, and eighty-feet long.  Throughout the district many sidewalk trees were sacrificed for sacks.

TIMES clip from March 9, 1998
TIMES clip from March 9, 1998

Next door to the south (right) of the Alaska Outfitters, the Yukon Supply Company claims to “sell only the best goods manufactured.”  H.H. Peterson, the manager, explained to a Seattle Times reporter, “The city is full of strangers intending on purchasing an outfit for the North, and supplying for a long journey and longer stay is something new to them.”  Ready to enable, Peterson would know that by far most of those he outfitted would return from the Yukon, or the Klondike, not enriched but exhausted.

One of the early trials of the Klondike rush was the need to build a boat on south shore of Lake Bennett before continuing on to the Klondike River.
One of the early trials of the Klondike rush was the need to build a boat on the south shore of Lake Bennett before continuing on to the Klondike River.

Far left in the featured photo at the top, a “Frederick, Nelson & Munro” sign tops the rear wall of that still fondly remembered department store, then at the northwest corner of Madison Street and Second Avenue. Silas Munro was the third partner, but not for long. Imagining that the gold fever would soon cool, Munro sold out to his partners and purchased this southeast corner of First Avenue and Madison Street.  Both Thedinga Hardware and Columbia Grocery were evicted when their leases ran out at the end of June 1901, and Munro built in place of these single-story storefronts the five-story Palace Hotel.

Silas Munro confirms his ownership of the storefronts shown in the featured photo at the top.  The new brevity is clipped from The Times July 4, 1901.
Silas Munro confirms his ownership of the storefronts shown in the featured photo at the top. This news brevity is clipped from The Times July 4, 1901.   The business news  at the bottom about the Pacific Meat Co. and the Kellogg Mill Co. is a bonus.

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, lads?  Ron Edge has two packed links to contributed directly below.   Both are of the same east side of First Ave. between Madison and Marion.  We encourage our readers to explore them and their own links – some which may be repeated – and so on (and on).    We will also slip in some clips from past features having to do with outfitting for the “traveling  men” or the neighborhood on Front Street (First Ave.) around Marion Street or near it.

THEN: Looking south on First Avenue from its northwest corner with Madison Street, circa 1905.  (Courtesy Museum of History and Industry)

THEN:  Lawton Gowey’s afternoon look south on the east side of First Avenue from Madison Street during the “spring of love” in 1967.  All three structures – notably the Rivoli Theatre at Madison St. on the left and the Stevens Hotel at Marion – were then slated for destruction.

=======

SOME CLIPS of OTHER FEATURES

Appeared first  in Pacific, Feb. 10, 1991.
Appeared first in Pacific, Feb. 10, 1991.

===

Fast service, and some of it light.  Note the offered Aluminum   .  First appeared in Pacific, July 30, 2005.
Fast service, and some of it light. Note the sign advertising “Portable Aluminum  Houses.” . First appeared in Pacific, July 30, 2005.

===

The S.S. Ohio at the Schwabacher Wharf preparing to steam off to Nome, Alaska.   (Courtesy, Jim Faber)
The S.S. Ohio at the Schwabacker Wharf preparing to steam off to Nome, Alaska. (Courtesy, Jim Faber)
First appeared in Pacific on August 29, 2004 and soon after in Jean and my book, Washington Then and Now, of which, please note, we still have a few hardbound copies.
First appeared in Pacific on August 29, 2004 and soon after in Jean’s and my book, Washington Then and Now, of which, please note, we still have a few hardbound copies.

===

First appeared in Pacific, July 1, 1990.  CLICK to ENLARGE
First appeared in Pacific, July 1, 1990. CLICK to ENLARGE

===

Yesler-Klondike-OUtfits-Yesler-and-3-WEB

There is a journalism convention embraced in larger pulps that the authors of features do not title them.  The title is the most commercial part, an alarm for the consumer, and so requires a special marketing sensitivity, which the author cannot be trusted to have or care about.
There is a journalism convention embraced by larger and more professional  pulps that the authors of features do not title them. The title is the most commercial part, a sensational cue for the consumer, and so requires a special marketing sensitivity, which the author cannot be trusted to have or care for.  First appeared in Pacific, Jan. 22, 1989.

===

Marc Cutler poses in front of the Richards Building in Bellingham, 2004, and as he confides, he "aint dead yet."
Marc Cutler poses in front of the Richards Building in Bellingham, 2004, and as he confides, 11 year later he still  “aint dead yet.”

RICHARDS-BLDG-sign

The earliest gold rush hereabouts was to the Fraser River in British Columbia.  Many of the argonauts trekked thru Whatcom (Bellingham) on their way to the gold fields, which were a spectacular failure except for the merchants of Bellingham.
The earliest gold rush hereabouts was to the Fraser River in British Columbia. Many of the argonauts trekked thru Whatcom (Bellingham) on their way to the gold fields, which were a spectacular failure except for the merchants of Whatcom/Bellingham.

===

Frye Opera House, ca. 1887.   At the northeast corner of Marion and Front (First Ave.) it was one of the grander victims of the city's Great Fire of June 6, 1889.
Frye Opera House, ca. 1887. At the northeast corner of Marion and Front (First Ave.) it was one of the grander victims of the city’s Great Fire of June 6, 1889.
Lawton Gowey record of the same corner (at First and Marion) during the 1967/8 construction of the SeaFirst Tower and before the razing of the Hotels Stevens for construction of the Federal Building.
Lawton Gowey’s record of the same corner (at First and Marion) during the 1967/8 construction of the SeaFirst Tower and before the razing of the Hotels Stevens for construction of the Federal Building.

====

Alaskan Painter Sydney Lawrence's landscape of his home territory - one of many hundreds.
Alaskan Painter Sydney Laurence’s landscape of some unidentified part of Alaska – one of many hundreds.  Born in Brooklyn in 1865, Laurence settled with his first wife in the artists’ colony of St. Ives, Cornwall form 1889 to 1898.  He won an award in the Paris Salon in 1904, about the time he left his family for Alaska.  He died in Anchorage in 1940.   His work is still popular and dear.  Sydney struck it rich in Alaska, with his smaller paintings now selling in auction for around ten thousand and the larger ones for more than two hundred thousand.  This Laurence was captured on slide by Horace Sykes, without comment on its size or who owns it.

Seattle Now & Then: Steps to the Harbor

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: Following the city’s Great Fire of 1889, a trestle was built on University Street, between Front Street (First Avenue) and Railroad Avenue (Alaskan Way).  By the time Lawton Gowey photographed what remained of the timber trestle in 1982, it had been shortened and would soon be razed for the Harbor Steps seen in Jean Sherrard’s repeat.  (Courtesy Lawton Gowey)
THEN: Following the city’s Great Fire of 1889, a trestle was built on University Street, between Front Street (First Avenue) and Railroad Avenue (Alaskan Way). By the time Lawton Gowey photographed what remained of the timber trestle in 1982, it had been shortened and would soon be razed for the Harbor Steps seen in Jean Sherrard’s repeat. (Courtesy Lawton Gowey)
NOW: The Harbor Steps, which now join the city to its waterfront via University Street, is perhaps our best example of what might be once the Alaskan Way Viaduct is removed.
NOW: The Harbor Steps, which now join the city to its waterfront via University Street, is perhaps our best example of what might be once the Alaskan Way Viaduct is removed.

I imagine that many Pacific readers will recognize Lawton Gowey’s not so old “then.”  Without comparing Jean Sherrard’s repeat, they may remember the location of this stubby trestle from the times they chose Western Avenue to escape the congestion of other downtown avenues.  That was a handy avoidance strategy, which had begun already in the 1890s when Western was planked, supported then on its own offshore trestle. 

A detail from the 1908 Baist Real Estate Map, showing the two blocks on University Street where the viaduct for wagons built after the Great Fire of 1889 reaches Railroad Avenue from First Avenue.
A detail from the 1908 Baist Real Estate Map, showing the two blocks on University Street where the viaduct for wagons built after the Great Fire of 1889 reaches Railroad Avenue from First Avenue.

Here at University Street a timbered ramp that crossed above Western between Front Street (First Avenue) and Railroad Avenue (Alaskan Way) was built soon after the Great Fire of 1889.  Plans to rebuild it in steel were never fulfilled, and so all its many repairs kept to wood.  Gowey had studied the history of this bridge and many others Seattle subjects. He kept track of the changes in our cityscape.  He was not a typical urban photographer; his interests were not so picturesque.  These interests, I believe, explain this photo of the somewhat dilapidated trestle on University Street, and the scar where it had been cut short years earlier.  Late in the 1930s the city’s engineers recommended removing the ramp’s center pier over Western Ave.  That claim stopped all traffic on the ramp; only pedestrians could still reach Western Avenue by the stairway shown. 

A clip from The Seattle  Times on May 11, 1938.
A clip from The Seattle Times on May 11, 1938.
A mid-20's aerial that is "bordered" by two viaducts, the one between the Pike Place Market and the Pike Street Pier, on the left, and, on the right, the still standing timber trestle between First Ave. and the Waterfront, on the right.
A mid-20’s aerial that is “bordered” by two viaducts, the one between the Pike Place Market and the Pike Street Pier, on the left, and, on the right, two blocks south on the right, the here still standing timber trestle between First Ave. and the Waterfront on University Street..  CLICK TO ENLARGE

I met Lawton Gowey early in 1982, the year he took this photo.  By then Lawton was recognized as a local authority on the history of public transportation, and I went to him for help.  He honed his interest in the 1930s, when he explored Seattle with his father and the family camera.  Later, working downtown as accountant for the Seattle Water Department, he had ready access to many of the city’s archives.  With his camera he continued to explore.  Some of his

Lawton-Gowey-Water-Dept-Card-WEB

Tempus Puget for Nov. 1, 1960, makes note of Lawton Gowey's contribution to a book on the Seattle-Tacoma Interurban.  November 4, 1960.
In his Tempus Puget for Nov. 4, 1960, Time’s columnist Lenny Anderson makes note of Lawton Gowey’s contribution to a book on the Seattle-Tacoma Interurban.
The Seattle Times report on Lawton Gowey and Ted Carlson's lecture on Seattle's streetcar history.   November, 27, 1982
The Seattle Times report on Lawton Gowey and Ted Carlson’s lecture on Seattle’s streetcar history. November, 27, 1982
The SeaFirst tower seen over the wrecked of the Stevens Hotel, in the forground, and the Burke Building, still half-standing on the right, for the construction of the Federal Office Bldg (Named for Henry Jackson) in the 1970s. The Empire Building
The SeaFirst tower seen over the wrecked of the Stevens Hotel, in the forground, and the Burke Building, still half-standing on the right, for the construction of the Federal Office Bldg (Named for Henry Jackson) in the 1970s. The Empire Building, with the Olympic National Life sign on the roof, later gave Seattle its first implosion spectacle.

subjects, such as the construction of the SeaFirst Building in the late 1960s, he tracked from his office in the City Light Building and other prospects as well.  He used his lunch hours to explore and record changes in the Central Business District and on the waterfront.  His collection includes the many shots he took over time and in all directions from the Smith Tower observatory.   We’ll insert here two looks up a freezing Third Avenue photographed by Lawton from the Seattle City Light (and water) Building on the west side of 3rd between Madison and Spring Streets.

The fine snow of December 31, 1968.  I remember it - a walk with about four others from the Helix Office north across the snowbound University Bridge to one or another coffee shop in the district.  I had an uncanny talent that day for hitting my targets with the snowballs I threw.  Honest.
The fine snow of December 31, 1968. I remember it – a walk with about four others from the Helix Office north across the snowbound University Bridge to one or another coffee shop in the University District. I had an uncanny talent that day for hitting sekeced targets with my snowballs. Honest.
A lighter snow (that I do not remember) about a month later on January 27, 1969, again from the City Light Building.
A lighter snow (that I do not remember) about a month later on January 27, 1969, again from the City Light Building.

Lawton Gowey died of a heart attack in the spring of 1983 at the mere age of sixty-one.  In the little time Lawton and I had to nurture our friendship, we shared many interests, including repeat photography, London history, and the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. This last fondness was also fortunate for both Bach and the members of Bethany Presbyterian Church.  Beginning in 1954 Lawton, was both organist and choir director for that Queen Anne Hill singing congregation. 

Lawton Gowey's 1968 pan of the city from Beacon Hill.  The SeaFirst building is approaching its topping-off.   It is barely a year since the full-freeway's dedication.  Correction.  Not quite full.  Note the ramp to nowhere at the bottom.  It would remain so for comedic years to come.
Lawton Gowey’s 1968 pan of the city from Beacon Hill. The SeaFirst building is approaching its topping-off. It is barely a year since the full-freeway’s dedication. Correction. Not quite full. Note the ramp to nowhere at the bottom. It would remain so for comedic years to come.
Lawton Gowey captures the Virginia V and the Goodtime II, nearby, on Nov. 17, 1982.
Lawton Gowey captures the Virginia V and the Goodtime II, nearby, on Nov. 17, 1982.
Lawton with camera and beside a friend below the Pike Street Hill Climb, and the then newly opened Waterfront Trolley, which was later mysteriously sent on vacation for, in part (or I believe) the needs of SAM's sculpture garden at the foot of Broad Street, home for the trolley's parking and maintenance.
Lawton, on the right, with camera and joined by  a friend below the Pike Street Hill Climb, and the then newly opened Waterfront Trolley, which was later mysteriously sent on vacation for, in part (or I believe) the needs of SAM’s sculpture garden at the foot of Broad Street, home then for the trolley’s parking and maintenance garage.

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, Paul?   Yessir.  Ron has put up four former features.  Startlingly, or predictable for those who remember the week past, the first if last week’s feature, which was also on University Street and near the waterfront.   The other three edge-links stay near the neighborhood, and predictably, as is our way, some of the images will appear again and again but in different sets or contexts.  This week’s fairly recent (from 1982) photograph is another by Lawton Gowey, and I’ll introduce a portrait or two of Lawton and a clip or two too.   Contrarily, I may take some of them and insert it in the above – the main or featured text.  Next week we return to  another touchstone – Pioneer Square.

THEN: The ruins left by Seattle’s Great Fire of June 6, 1889, included a large neighborhood of warehouses and factories built on timber quays over the tides.  Following the fire the quays were soon restored with new capping and planking.  A close look on the far-right will reveal some of this construction on the quays underway.  (Courtesy, Seattle Public Library)

THEN: Looking west from First Avenue down the University Street viaduct to the waterfront, ca. 1905.  Post Office teams and their drivers pose beside the Arlington Hotel, which was then also headquarters for mail delivery in Seattle.  (Courtesy, Gary Gaffner)

=======

Harbor Steps construction, April 1994.
Harbor Steps construction, April 1994.   Here I used my architectural “correction” lens, which I later sent off to Berangere in Paris, where by now buildings require little correction.   The photo below was photographed on the same spring day at the one above.

Harbor-Steps-construct-April-94-WEB-------------------------

Sometime later (I've lost the date) with young Italian Cypresses (I believe) potted beside the Step's fountain.
Sometime later (I’ve lost the date) with young Italian Cypresses (I believe) potted beside the Step’s fountain.
. . . and later still.  The Cypresses have grown and the sculpted symbol for Pi, has arrived.   For trees and art this undated record may be compared to Jean's near the top.
. . . and later still. The Cypresses have grown and the sculpted symbol for Pi, has arrived. For trees and art this undated record may be compared to Jean’s near the top.

 

 

Seattle Now & Then: Seattle Fire Ruins Redux

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: The ruins left by Seattle’s Great Fire of June 6, 1889, included a large neighborhood of warehouses and factories built on timber quays over the tides.  Following the fire the quays were soon restored with new capping and planking.  A close look on the far-right will reveal some of this construction on the quays underway.  (Courtesy, Seattle Public Library)
THEN: The ruins left by Seattle’s Great Fire of June 6, 1889, included a large neighborhood of warehouses and factories built on timber quays over the tides. Following the fire the quays were soon restored with new capping and planking. A close look on the far-right will reveal some of this construction on the quays underway. (Courtesy, Seattle Public Library)
NOW: Nearly completed before the Great Fire, the Gilmore Building’s foundation served as a firewall, stopping the spread of the Great Fire to the north.  Soon renamed the Arlington Hotel, and later the Bay Building, the structure was razed in 1974 for development of Harbor Steps.
NOW: Nearly completed before the Great Fire, the Gilmore Building’s foundation served as a firewall, stopping the spread of the Great Fire to the north. Soon renamed the Arlington Hotel, and later the Bay Building, the structure was razed in 1974 for development of Harbor Steps.

Of the few photographs taken during the city’s Great Fire of June 6, 1889, and the hundreds more recording the ruins, this one is not typical.  Positioned far north of the more sensational ruins around Pioneer Square, the photographer looks south from the Front Street (First Avenue) boardwalk about sixty feet south of University Street. Although no caption accompanies the original print, the photographer would have surely known that “where the fire was stopped” would have been an appropriate description for it.

Another look at the Gilmore Block's fire-stopping foundation, looking south from the Front Street (First Ave.) boardwalk above it.
Another look at the Gilmore Block’s fire-stopping foundation, looking south from the Front Street (First Ave.) boardwalk above it.  The still-smoldering ruins suggest that this is the earlier of the two scenes.

The most obvious ruin here (in the featured “then” photo but also in a smaller part in the photo directly above) is the north façade of the Northwest Cracker Company’s brick quarters, standing, somewhat, behind the leaning power pole.  Johan Haglund (“keep clam” Ivar’s father) worked there.  On the day of the fire, Haglund and his co-workers left before the destruction reached the cracker factory, which was located one lot south of the southwest corner of Front and Seneca.  Like many others, Haglund wound up on First Hill watching through the night as more than thirty blocks of Seattle were destroyed.

Looking southeast and
Looking southeast to “front st. from docks” with the cracker factory’s brick ruin right-of-center.  Left of center is a short bridge on Front Street built in 1876 over what was left of the Seneca Street ravine, which was once a native cemetery.  Repair on the docks is underway, lower-right,   The Stetson-Post ” terrace homes (or apartments) at the northeast corner of Marion and Second Avenue appear far right breaking the horizon.

To the north side of the cracker factory and Seneca Street, the fire’s rubble is mixed with generators of the Seattle Electric Light Company, which shared the northwest corner of Front and Seneca Streets with Puget Sound Ice Company.  In the featured “then” photo at the top, the scorched tree that rises to the scene’s center is a puzzle.  The leaves on its crown were, it seems, merely scorched and not consumed.  Perhaps it was this defiant tree that was most appealing to the photographer.  Or was it, perhaps, the new foundation for the Gilmore Block (lower-right), on which construction had recently begun. It was that foundation that stopped the fire’s northerly advance along the shoreline.  Off shore bucket brigades successfully doused the fire on Railroad Avenue where (here just out of frame to the right) its two railroad trestles crossed open water.

A detail from the 1888 Sanborn real estate map, which shows the development than along the waterfront and Front Street at the foot of University Street.  The footprint for the cracker factory is sketched bottom-center, and the two trestles south of the Schwabacher dock are show off shore.  It was there that the off-shore advance of the fire was stopped by a bucket brigade of more than two hundred volunteers.
A detail from the 1888 Sanborn real estate map, which shows the development then along the waterfront and Front Street at the foot of University Street. The footprint for the cracker factory is sketched bottom-center, and the two trestles south of the Schwabacher dock are shown off shore. It was there that the  advance of the fire was stopped by a bucket brigade of more than two hundred volunteers.  Work on the Gilmore foundation has not yet begun in the ’88 map.
Looking down
Looking south to the city from a building on the west side of Front Street between Pike and Union Streets before the fire in 1888.  From this prospect, the open water and two trestles from which the off-shore fire was stopped appear on the far right.  Beacon Hill is on the horizon.   The dark dock reaching far into Elliott Bay is the King Street Coal Bunkers.  The  cluster of small warehouses grouped to the far side of Henry Yesler’s mill pond, stand on his namesake dock.
The fire ruins looking south
The fire ruins looking south over Union Street.  Arthur and Mary Denny’s home is far-left.  First floor planking on the Gilmore Dock, at the southwest corner of Front and University, is underway.  Both Front Street and its bay-side sidewalk have been repaired and the Front Street cable railway is again operating.  Gilmore’s waterfront warehouse is also going up on the far right.  Its west facade will face Railroad Avenue which is also being repaired with new pilings and planks.

On June 10th, or four days after the fire, The Post-Intelligencer reported that “slabs and sawdust are still burning and sending clouds of smoke over the town.”  The following day the paper noted that “photos of the fire are already being sold on the street.” 

1889 ruins along Front Street looking north from near the foot of Cherry Street.  The central tower of the Stetson-Post terraced apartments appear on the top-right corner.
1889 ruins along Front Street looking north from near the foot of Cherry Street. The central tower of the Stetson-Post terraced apartments appear near the photograph’s top-right corner.

WEB EXTRAS…

…Extras, read all about it! Paul?

Jean, count them, Ron Edge has put up six links with past features that for the most part relate to the Great Fire of June 6, 1889, especially the waterfront north of Columbia Street.    Those are followed by a few more older features pulled as scanned Times clippings from our archive of the same.

THEN: Looking west from First Avenue down the University Street viaduct to the waterfront, ca. 1905.  Post Office teams and their drivers pose beside the Arlington Hotel, which was then also headquarters for mail delivery in Seattle.  (Courtesy, Gary Gaffner)

THEN: The Hotel York at the northwest corner of Pike Street and First Avenue supplied beds on the American Plan for travelers and rooms for traveling hucksters. (Courtesy Lawton Gowey)

THEN: The driver, lower left, leads his team towards First Avenue up a planked incline on Madison Street.  (Courtesy MOHAI)

=======

The central waterfront in 1890 photographed from the King Street coal dock.  The Gilmore Block is at the center of the scene with its corner tower still under construction.  The foundation for the Denny Hotel marks the horizon on Denny Hill.
The central waterfront in 1890 photographed from the King Street coal dock. The Gilmore Block is at the center of the scene with its corner tower still under construction. The foundation for the Denny Hotel marks the horizon on Denny Hill.  Yesler’s Wharf is far right.  Only a few post-fire tents can  found. The Hotel York at the northwest corner of Pike and Front (First Ave.) shows its south facade on the far left.

=====

First appeared in Pacific,
First appeared in Pacific August 30, 1998.

=====

First appeared in Pacific, Nov. 12, 2000.
First appeared in Pacific, Nov. 12, 2000.

=====

The day after.
The day after. DOUBLE-CLICK to ENLARGE

=====

The Gilmore Block, aka Arlington Hotel, aka Bay Building at the southwest corner of University Street and First Avenue.
The Gilmore Block, aka Arlington Hotel, aka Bay Building at the southwest corner of University Street and First Avenue.
Anders Wilse's look out of a back window in the Arlington and and Over the University Street viaduct to the Schwabacher and Post Street wharves in the late 1890s.
Anders Wilse’s look out of a back window in the Arlington Hotel over the University Street viaduct to the Schwabacher and Post Street wharves in the late 1890s.

=====

THE GARDEN OF ALLAH

A performance at the Garden of Allah on a lower floor of First Avenue in the Bay Building.
A performance at the Garden of Allah on a lower floor of First Avenue in the Bay Building.
First appeared in Pacific, February 1, 1998
First appeared in Pacific, February 1, 1998
Frank Shaw's record of the Bay Building ruins, not from fire by the Harbor Steps developers urge to eventually construct the so-named development that has taken its place.  The last of the top portion of the University Street viaduct is seen on the left.  Shaw took this on March 11, 1975.
Frank Shaw’s record of the Bay Building ruins, not from fire by the Harbor Steps planners urge to eventually construct the so-named development that has taken its place. The last of the top (east) portion of the University Street viaduct is seen on the left. Shaw took this on March 11, 1975.
A Daily Intelligencer report on the condition of the same block published on January, 18, 1880.  (Courtesy, Ron Edge)
A Daily Intelligencer report on the condition of Front Street in the block north of University Street,  published on January, 18, 1880. (Courtesy, Ron Edge)

====

THE FIRE TRAVELS NORTH

DOUBLE-CLICK TO ENLARGE

The part of the Post-Intelligencer's report on the June 6, 1889 fire printed the day after.  These inches described the fire's advance north along Front Street from the site of its ignition at the foot of Madison Street.
Part of the Post-Intelligencer’s report on the June 6, 1889 fire printed the day after. These column inches described the fire’s advance north along Front Street from the site of the fire’s ignition at the foot of Madison Street.

###

 

 

 

Now & Then here and now

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 102 other followers