All posts by jrsherrard

Just a guy, ya know...

Seattle Now & Then: John Stamets’ Pike Place Market Portrait

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: Most likely many readers will remember – and some can also stand on their proof – when the Market paved its Arcade with new “name tiles” funded by the thousands of preservationist that purchased them. Note the banner promoting the $35 tiles. Stamets recorded this on May 25, 1986 during the Market Street Fair. (Courtesy, University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections, John Stamets Collection, UW38733)
NOW: The larger high-rise changes are to the east, to the far side of First Avenue.

This coming Thursday August 17th, John Stamets’ 1986 panorama looking east on Pike Street from the Pike Place Market, printed here, will be exhibited in the Market from 6:30-8:30 PM near where Jean Sherrard took his contemporary parallel earlier this summer.  A mere thirty-one years separate John’s and Jean’s subjects where Pike Street elbows north into Pike Place. We have chosen this subject in part to honor our brilliant old friend whose civic record of photographic achievements was well chosen and utterly unique.  John Stamets died suddenly on the weekend of June 7-8 2014, near his office and basement laboratory in the University of Washington’s Gould Hall where he had been teaching architectural photography for many years.

The featured photo at the top – looking east from the market’s philanthropic pig – appears on page sixty-five of John’s 1987 book “Portrait Of A Market.”  Although now out of print, you may find a used copy with a little web exploring. All of the book’s seventy-three subjects are pans recorded with his Widelux camera, and each takes its own page.  This leaves room for the often evocative captions authored by Steve Dunnington, whom the book’s publisher, Cathy Hillenbrand of The Real Comet Press, explains is a “journalist and co-owner of the Pike Place Market newsstand.”  Thirty years ago or so,

Four-fifths of the creative star that revealed the wide-angle market in 1987. They are, left-to-right, Ed Marquand, Suzanne Kotz, the publisher Cathy Hillenbrans, and Steve Dunnington, the author and market newsman who wrote the book’s captions. . John Stamets is shown directly below in a market portrait recorded by his friend Skip Kerr.  In the photo, John is pointing with his right toe to his name tile in the market arcade. It dates  from 1986, the time of the book’s production. John’s  Widelux hangs from his neck.
John Stamets by Skip Kerr

you may have bought a publication from him here at the southwest corner of what remains one of Seattle’s most cherished landmarks: the intersection of First Avenue and Pike Street.  On the Thursday afternoon of August 17, both Dunnington and Hillenbrand will be on hand to share in what is also the Market’s 110th Anniversary Celebration.

I first met John Stamets in the 1970s on Capitol Hill, we then both rented apartments on 13th Avenue.  John, a Yale graduate, was then the progressive tabloid Seattle Sun’s last editor and also its last photographer.  Among his many projects that followed were an elaborate colored survey of “Flesh Avenue,” the name sometimes used for First Avenue south of the Market before its gentrification, a masterful collection of portraits of his riders when he was driving a cab, and the oversized record of the business district through its changes in the 1980s and after.  John was also famous for his serendipitous knack for recording the unannounced 1987 collapse of the new construction on the Husky Stadium (he was biking by) and the fall of the Hammering Man at the somewhat new Seattle Art Museum’s entrance in 1991.

John Stamet’s Widelux Negatives as boxed and marked in the UW Library Special Collections.

This coming Thursday’s unique tour begins at 6:30 pm in in the Market Arcade. (Here is a link, www.pikeplacemarket.org/stametsexhibit  hashtag: #StametsExhibit.)  Each of the twenty featured subjects will be attended and interpreted by a member of the sponsoring organizations, including Friends of the Market, the Pike Place Market Preservation and Development Authority, and the King Conservation District.   Later this year, the selected Stamets Market panoramas will be put on permanent exhibit in the Market Commons, part of the new addition on the west side of Western Avenue.

John Stamets by Davis Freeman

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, lads?  Yup Jean and more of the similar, although Ron Edge’s excavations from recent blog contributions (about the market and such) will need to wait on his rising to, we hope, a wet Sunday the 13th.  Meanwhile here follows some old features from the neighborhood.  (Thanks for your stirring Meridian Street block party this Sat. the 12th..  Did you have time to also take some snaps of that joyful congregating of North Green Lake familiars and visiting friends Berangere, our fellow blogger, and her family?)

[Ron is awake, while I am off again to nighty-bears.  The champion of that aka good-night, Bill Burden, is also in town this weekend for visits with Berangere and her family, and tasting Jean’s roasted duck at  the Sherrard’s welcoming banquet on the elegant roof of their garage on Friday last.  So here follows, and just in time, Ron’s links to recent posts.]

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THEN: Mark Tobey, almost certainly Seattle’s historically most celebrated artist, poses in the early 1960s with some Red Delicious apples beside the Sanitary Market in the Pike Place Market. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)

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: A circa 1920 look north along the tiled roofline of the Pike Place Market’s North Arcade, which is fitted into the slender block between Pike Place, on the right, and Western Avenue, on the left. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)

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THEN: Looking south from the Schwabacher Wharf to the Baker Dock and along the Seattle waterfront rebuilt following the city’s Great Fire of June 6, 1889. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)

THEN: Steel beams clutter a freshly regraded Second Avenue during the 1907 construction of the Moore Theatre. The view looks north toward Virginia Street.

THEN: An early-20th-century scene during the Second Avenue Regrade looks east into its intersection with Virginia Avenue. A home is being moved from harm's way, but the hotel on the hill behind it would not survive the regrade's spoiling. Courtesy of Ron Edge.

THEN: The five buildings shown here on the west side of Third Avenue south of Virginia Street have endured with few changes since the ‘then’ photo was snapped in 1936. The exception is the smallest, far-right, the Virginian Tavern now stripped for an open garage at Third’s southwest corner with Virginia Street. The six-story Hardon Hall Apartments, at the center of the five, was renovated in 2006 for low-income housing by the Plymouth Housing Group.

THEN: Sometime between early December 1906 and mid-February 1907 an unnamed photographer with her or his back about two lots north of Pike Street recorded landmarks on the east side of Third Avenue including, in part, the Washington Bar stables, on the right; the Union Stables at the center, a church converted for theatre at Pine Street, and north of Pine up a snow-dusted Denny Hill, the Washington Hotel. (Used courtesy of Ron Edge)

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THEN: Seattle Architect Paul Henderson Ryan designed the Liberty Theatre around the first of many subsequent Wurlitzer organs used for accompanying silent films in theatres “across the land”. The Spanish-clad actor-dancers posed on the stage apron are most likely involved in a promotion for a film – perhaps Don Q, Son of Zorro (1925) or Douglas Fairbanks’ The Gaucho (1929) that also played at the Liberty. (Courtesy Lawton Gowey)

THEN: Looking south from Pine Street down the wide Second Avenue in 1911, then Seattle’s growing retail strip and parade promenade. (courtesy of Jim Westall)

THEN: Where last week the old Washington Hotel looked down from the top of Denny Hill to the 3rd Ave. and Pine St. intersection, on the left, here the New Washington Hotel, left of center and one block west of the razed hotel, towers over the still new Denny Regrade neighborhood in 1917. (Historical photo courtesy of Ron Edge)

THEN: In 1910, a circa date for this look north on First Avenue across Virginia Street, the two corners on the east side of the intersection were still undeveloped – except for signs. The Terminal Sales Building, seen far right in Jean Sherrard’s repeat, did not replace the billboards that crowd the sidewalk in the “then” until 1923. (Seattle Municipal Archive)

THEN: The Pike Place Market’s irregular block shapes and bluff-side topography joined to create a multi-level campus of surprising places, such as this covered curve routing Post Alley up into the Market. Here, in 1966, the “gent’s” entrance to Seattle’s first Municipal Rest Room (1908) is closed with red tape and a sign reading “Toilet room, closed temporarily for repairs.” The Market was then generally very much in need of repair. (by Frank Shaw, courtesy, Mike Veitenhans)

THEN: The 1974 fire at the Municipal Market Building on the west side of Western Avenue did not hasten the demise of the by then half-century old addition of the Pike Place Market. It had already been scheduled for demolition. (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archive)

 

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The Post Alley curve by Frank Shaw, May 1, 1966.

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Seattle Now & Then: The Gatewood School

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THEN: Opened in 1910 to 268 students in grades 1 to 8, school architect Edgar Blair’s Gatewood Elementary School was awarded landmark status by the city in 1988. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)
NOW: Looking south over Myrtle Street and down 44th Ave. S.W., the school’s Tudor-styled face survives with very few changes.

Set five-or-so blocks east of Puget Sound and 200 feet above it, Gatewood Elementary School is also only a half mile west of – and about 320 feet below – the highest point in Seattle. At 522 feet above the tides this elevated area is appropriately called Highpoint, and like the school below it, its two water towers face Myrtle Street.

A borrow from the generous Google Earth looking north over the nighest part of Seattle – somewhere on the alley that drops down the middle of the subject from Myrtle Street and the two municipal water tanks.
A detail of the neighborhood pulled from the 1912 Baist Real Estate Map. Both Gatewood School and the Kenny Home are colored red to indicate or celebrate their brick construction. The namesake additions are both directly north of the school.  

In Jean Sherrard’s “now” Myrtle interrupts the northward extension of 44th Avenue SW, bottom-left.  In the historical photo we can detect the rails and timber ties of the trolley line that spurred the building of both homes and families in this part of West Seattle.  The streetcars began running south from The Junction at Alaska Street

Looking north though the Junction on Sept. 23, 1941.
California Avenue and Myrtle Street looking north on the former and thru the latter where tracks turn west (or left).
Looking north on 47th Avenue SW thru its intersection with Othello Street. We did a now-then on this recently and will include it below with at the second of our “Edge-Links.”  We also published a now-then long ago on the same intersection and will interrupt with it here above a temporary Vashon Welcome Archi that follows it..   Here – in the photo above – the Kenny Home is on the right.

and California Avenue in 1907.  The tracks turned west on Myrtle and soon after passing the school turned south past the Kenney Home (treated in this column for June 19, 2016)  to reach the nearby Fauntleroy neighborhood and its pier for ferry and mosquito fleet connections with all of Puget Sound, most importantly with Vashon Island.

First appeared in PACIFIC on April 9, 2000, and honestly it shakes me so to understand that that is now seventeen years ago. (I need a match to light some incense.)

In spite of the school’s name, no great gate was built to open for admission into these woods.  Rather, the school is named for Carlisle Gatewood, a developer who platted two residential additions nearby: Gatewood Acres and Gatewood Gardens. (You can find them in the Baist Map detail printed above.)  Liking, perhaps, the picturesque qualities of the name, the Seattle School Board kept it for its neighborhood school, which opened in 1910 on the campus’ original 1.67 acres.  The first year’s attendance of 268 students indicates that the school was needed – perhaps desperately.  While the 1922 addition by architect Floyd A. Naramore was later demolished, the original schoolhouse was saved and designated a city landmark in 1988.

Franklin High School another of architect Edgar Blair’s creations.

Certainly, by many tastes, the Tudor-styled Gatewood School is beautiful.  The architect Edgar Blair was 35 when he moved here in 1906. Three years later he succeeded the prolific James Stephen as the official Seattle school architect. Blair also kept busy. As we learn from the repeatedly helpful UW Press tome Shaping Seattle Architecture, he drew the plans for many other schools with which the reader may well be familiar. His more than 35 school designs (originals and additions) include three Seattle high schools, Franklin (1910-11, above),  Ballard (since replaced) and West Seattle.

Horace Sykes late 1940s panorama of the Olympic Mountains lighted by a winter sunset. We confess that Horace lived in Magnolia not West Seattle. He was a member of the Seattle Camera Club and a sensitive adjuster of fire insurance claims who also lectured on subjects related to fire safety. A few years back we shared a daily feature on this blog that we titled “Our Daily Sykes.” You may search for it and perhaps rediscover Horace Sykes’ splendid embrace of the picturesque during his travels with camera around the American West…

Gatewood is but one part of the undulating neighborhood that looks west across Puget Sound from the long and laid back western side of West Seattle.  The five miles from Duwamish Head to Fauntleroy is worth an unplanned exploration.  Across Puget Sound the string of Olympic Mountains summits with their sunsets are the benchmarks for what is also alluring about the western side of West Seattle.  In 1924 the enduring gift of this panorama inspired a sentimental majority of the West Seattle Commercial Club to profess “We feel that the term West Seattle covering the west side is confusing.”  In its place the business boosters proposed a new “blanket term to cover the entire west side.”  The term, elegiac but short-lived, was “Olympic Hills.”

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, les mecs? Yes Jean more wallowing by Ron and I mostly in West Seattle or on the way to and from it.   But something  is new.  When we select an appropriate feature that was first published in Pacific before we started our weekly printing of this blog, me will now feel free to mix it with any more recent blog feature with which it mixes well.  For instance four inches below we have snuggled the first illustrated writing we did on Sea View Hall, not so long ago on January 23, 2000, hand-in-hand with our recent treatment of the same structure.  We hope you will find that not too much it lifted from the old narrative into the new.   We decided to do it twice because of our love for Clay Eals, our old friend who until recently was the executive director (or some such status-saturated power-title) for the West Seattle Historical Society.   Start clicking.

THEN: The Gatewood Craftsman Lodge was built on a road, in a neighborhood, and near a public school all named for the developer Carlisle Gatewood, who also lived in the neighborhood. The three women posing in the third floor’s open windows are the Clark sisters, Jean, Dorothy and Peggy, members of the family that moved into the home in the late 1930s.

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THEN: Looking into West Seattle’s Junction and north on California Ave. SW to its intersection with SW Alaska Street in 1941. The Hamm Building, is seen above the light-colored car, and the Campbell Building is at right, behind the G.O. Guy Drugs sign.

The above first appeared in Pacific on April 10, 1994.

THEN: Included among the several detailed photos taken for the Bernards of their new and yet rustic Fir Lodge, was this one of the living room with its oversized fireplace and the piano on which Marie, their older daughter, learned to play well enough to concertize. (Courtesy Doris Nelson)

THEN: In 1852 many of Seattle’s first pioneers removed from Alki Point by dugout canoe for the deeper and safer harbor along the east shore of Elliott Bay (our central waterfront). About a half-century later any hope or expectation that the few survivors among these pioneers could readily visit Alki Beach and Point by land were fulfilled with the timber quays and bridges along Spokane Street. (Courtesy Seattle Municipal Archive)

THEN: The Seattle Times in its lengthy coverage of the then new Seattle Steel in the paper’s Magazine Section for Sept. 10, 1905 – the year this photograph was recorded – noted that “the plant itself is a series of strong, substantial, cavernous sheds, built for use, not for beauty.” (Courtesy, MOHAI, the Museum of History and Industry)

THEN: Looking southeast from above Alki Avenue, the Schmitz Park horizon is serrated by the oldest trees in the city. The five duplexes clustered on the right were built 1919-1921 by Ernest and Alberta Conklin. Ernest died in 1924, but Alberta continued to live there until well past 1932, the year this photograph was recorded. (Seattle Municipal Archives.)

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THEN: Built in 1893, West Seattle School kept teaching until ruined by the region’s 1949 earthquake. (Courtesy Michael Maslan)

THEN: The Oregon and Washington Railroad Georgetown Depot was built in 1910 about two blocks north of the Seattle Lighting Company’s Gas Works, far-right. (Courtesy, Frank and Margaret Fickheisen)

THEN: As the caption at the bottom allows, the Juneau Street footbridge opened for pedestrians on March 26,1915. It crossed the main track lines – not spurs – of three railroads and reached east from the Georgetown business district to a sprawling neighborhood of workers’ homes on the gentle slope of the Beacon Hill ridge. (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archives.)

THEN: Part of the pond that here in 1946 filled much of the long block between Massachusetts and Holgate Streets and 8th Avenue S. and Airport Way. (Courtesy, Ron Edge)

THEN: The work of filling the tidelands south of King Street began in 1853 with the chips from Yesler’s sawmill. Here in the neighborhood of 9th Ave. S. (Airport Way) and Holgate Street, the tideland reclaiming and street regrading continue 70 years later in 1923. (Courtesy, Municipal Archive)

THEN: Unemployed men search for anything useful in land being reclaimed with city garbage used for fill on the tideflats. The date is March 6, 1937. The scene looks northwest from what was once near 7th Ave. S. and Forest Street, but is now inside the operations facilities for the Light Rail Division of Sound Transit. The Sears Department Store, now home of Starbucks Coffee Co., appears in the upper-left corner. Courtesy: The Post-Intelligencer Collection at the Museum of History and Industry.

THEN: Sometime before her first move from this brewery courtyard in 1912, Lady Rainier was moved by a freeze to these sensational effects. She did not turn her fountain off. (Courtesy of Frank & Margaret Fickeisen)

THEN: Twenty years ago the Mukai Farm and Garden on Vashon Island was designated a King County Landmark. (Courtesy, Vashon Maury Island Heritage Association)

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First printed in Pacific on July 24, 1988, the then 7th year for “Seattle Now and Then.”

Seattle Now & Then: The Blyth Barn on Squak Slough

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THEN: Looking north over Squak Slough (aka the Sammamish River) and the Blyth farm ca. 1900. The barn stood near what is now the tee for the 18th hole of the Wayne Golf Course.
NOW: Left-to-right, knowledgeable Squak Slough historians Dean Jowers, Margaret Turcott, and Sue Kienast, pose for Jean with their backs to the narrowed waterway. Pilings for the Waynita Way bridge appear on the right.

When first glimpsed, this week’s “then” charmed me with a classical restraint that is softly repeated, upside down, in Squak Slough.  Especially satisfying are the comely barn, the blooming fruit tree and the saw-tooth horizon strung with surviving fir trees that for reasons only known to sawyers were earlier rejected by the clear-cutting lumber jacks. We are also puzzled why the unnamed photographer chose to have the farmhouse roof rise above and seemingly out of the barn.  They seem to be attached, but, of course, are not.

Although minimal, the caption penned on the negative is, of course, most helpful.  It gives the indigenous name for the waterway we are now more likely to call the Sammamish River.  Wondering where on the slough/river and by whom this farm was built, Jean and I sought expert help by first printing this Sunday’s photo in our blog dorpatsherrardlomont.  Dean Jowers, a Redmond Historical Society volunteer, read the posting and took the challenge. With a print-out of this farm-scape in hand the retired operations manager, with a talent for details and spatial relations, hiked the fourteen miles that the slough courses between the two big lakes: Sammamish and Washington.  In the beginning of his search, Jowers confesses, “I started at the wrong end of the river and was first wrong three times.” But then with the help of a 1919 topographical map, he found the horizon line.  It registered the slight dent – or slump – above the farmhouse seen in the featured photograph at the top.

The Acme, one of the shallow steamers that moved passengers and goods on Slough. Note the familiar barn just above the two men on the steamer’s bow, and the familiar farmhouse on the left.

In Jean’s repeat, Dean Jowers poses for the “now” with, left-to-right, Margret Turcott and Sue Kienast, both energetic members of the Bothell Historical Society. They confirm Jowers’ research. This a little more than two miles above the Slough’s outflow into Lake Washington.  The “then” photo was taken years before Lake Washington was lowered nine feet in 1916 with the building of the ship canal. In spite of the drop, the slough is still slow moving.

This is John & Christina Blyth’s Farm.  At the urging of her brother Mattias Bargquist, the thirty-three year old Christina emigrated from Sweden in 1884. She soon met her future husband John Blyth, who was her brother’s friend and “next door” neighbor across the Slough. Perhaps there was some romantic maneuvering and conjugal conspiring involved in this meeting, for John accompanied Mattias on the lake steamer that first delivered Christina from Seattle to their farms facing across the Slough.  John soon married Christina in their family home on March 11, 1885.  Margaret Turcott tells this and other Blyth and Bothell stories well in her new book titled “Bothell” to be published this coming August.  Dean Jowers suggests that the bridge showing on the right was built by these intertwined families for their friendly visits.

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, fellahs?  Yes Jean, we will not disappoint you.   Like candidates in a voters guide or totem figures on a pole we will stack below some features, old and older, that might lead one directly or eventually to the little river that runs between Bothell and Redmond.

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THEN: With great clouds overhead and a landscape 45 years shorter than now, one vehicle – a pickup heading east – gets this part of State Route 520 to itself on a weekday afternoon. (courtesy Lawton Gowey)

THEN: With his or her back to the east shore of Lake Sammamish an unidentified photographer recorded this Monohon scene in about 1909, the date suggested by the Eastside Heritage Center, by whose courtesy we use this historical record.

https://sherrlock.files.wordpress.com/2010/11/xassoct-poultry-ext-then11.jpg?w=1080&h=795

THEN: This panorama could have used a tower (or drone) to better survey the size of the June 1, 191l, crowd gathered in Fremont/Ross to celebrate the beginning of construction on the Lake Washington Ship Canal. (Courtesy, Museum of History & Industry)

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

THEN: Far-left, Playland’s Acroplane, a carni’ flight-simulator, stands admired by future pilots in 1932. Behind them sprawls the amusement park’s fated Fun House. (Courtesy, Ron Edge)

THEN: Julia and Richard Ballinger owned a “gas-powered” rowboat to reach their summer home on their namesake Lake Ballinger. This 1911 view looks east from near the tracks of the Seattle-Everett Interurban. (Courtesy, Ron Edge)

THEN: From studying both aerial and tax photos, Redmond historian Tom Hitzroth figures that the bell tower on the roof of Brown’s Garage was removed between 1936 and 1938. (Most likely it was used to alert the town’s volunteer fire department.) By then Mayor Bill Brown had sold his garage while keeping his mayoral chair. (Courtesy, Redmond Historical Society)

THEN: Redmond reaped its first bank in 1911 at the pioneer corner of Cleveland Avenue and Leary Way. (Courtesy, Kirkland Historical Society)

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Seattle Now & Then: ‘The City is More Than Human’

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THEN: Ballard dairy farmer Jess Jensen poses with four of his milch cows on 8th Avenue Northwest, near its intersection with NW 58th Street. The subject looks north.
NOW: Holding his book “The City Is More Than Human,” historian Frederick L. Brown, poses for Jean Sherrard in the traffic on 8th Avenue NW. Brown only seems to be in danger. The cars behind him have been stopped by the traffic light at NW 58th Street.

Here stands historian Fred Brown holding his new book and farmer Jess Jensen holding the roped reins attached to his four cows. The two-legged animals pose near one another and the intersection of NW 58th Street and 8th Avenue NW, although across about a century of time.  Before Ballard’s 1907 annexation into Seattle, 58th was named Times Street (not knowing other or better, I propose that it was named for this newspaper). Resting comfortably at the base of Phinney ridge, Eighth Avenue, then called Division Street, served as Ballard’s eastern border.

Jesse and Kjerstine Jensen were Danish immigrants who built their home in Ballard in the 1890s. Like most of Ballard’s first flood of citizens, Jesse easily found hard but sustaining work with a lumber mill on Salmon Bay.  He signed on with one of the largest, the Ballard Stimson Mill.  Soon, however, the couple built their Ballard farm, raising primarily chickens, pigs and cows.  Kjerstine handled the business of the farm.  The milk was both sterile and popular, selling at a nickel a quart.  Anna, the couple’s daughter, recalled “My mother sold quite a lots of chickens, young fryers.  They’d come and get them and she’d kill them (the chickens) right while they (the customers) were there (waiting).”

If Fred and Jesse could have bridged the century here at the corner, the historian might have first asked the farmer for the names of his cows. Surely they all had them. While paging through his book and pausing at page 58 where this snapshot of Jensen and his bovine quartet is printed, the historian Brown would not have missed the chance for asking the builder-farmer for the photo’s date.  Perhaps it was 1907 or soon after.  One of the first freedoms lost that year with Ballard’s annexation into Seattle was a cow’s liberty to wander the neighborhood.  Here Jesse has his milch cows roped.  Perhaps they are regulated, posing together not in Ballard but in Seattle. Whichever. Brown notes that the Eighth Avenue in the snapshot is still more an inviting pasture for the couple’s cows than a paved arterial.

While I do not know where this familiar cow was being milked, I have used the photo in another blog story about a Moclips mystery (One can probably keyword it.) And here we use it again for a “familiar scene” in Ballard.

Brown clarifies the telling title of his book, The City is More Than Human, with a subtitle, An Animal History of Seattle.  For now, I cannot think of a good analogy for his history except to note that once you have read The City Is More Than Human, you may feel that you have been talking with its subjects: beavers, cougars, cattle, cows, horses, dogs, cats, pigs, chickens and salmon.

The Auckland Dairy, not in Ballard but across Salmon Bay up the ridge in Magnolia. (Courtesy, the Magnolia Historical Society)
Julia Zaunder with the family cow on the side lawn of their Belltown Home on First Ave. North.
Several pets on the front steps of the Lowman Home at the southeast corner of Marion Street and Boren Avenue ca. 1890. (Courtesy, Michael Maslan)
Caged poultry on a ride.

If you have pets, children with pets, back yard chickens (properly cared for, they are allowed), or an active good will for animals, you may well want to read this book.  Author Brown suggests that it may both help you “see how animals fit into history” and also spur you to “consider how to live amongst animals today.” (To note its own pedigree, Brown’s book is published by the University of Washington Press with the assistance of a grant from the Weyerhaeuser Environmental Books Endowment.)

You will find this portrait of Morris the Cat on the facing page to Fred Brown’s Fourth Chapter, titled “Dogs and Cats Loving Pets in Urban Homes.” Morris, of course, was also a publicist, which reminds us to credit his portrait to The Gary Tolam Collection at the Museum of History and Industry, aka MOHAI.

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, dawgs? YUP JEAN links galore or more of the same, we mean features, old and not-so-old that touch on this week’s subject and its Ballard home.

THEN: With his or her back to the original Ballard business district, an unnamed photographer looks southeast on Leary Way, most likely in 1936.

THEN: This look west from the West Woodland neighborhood toward Ballard comes by way of the Museum of History and Industry, with some help from both Ron Edge and West Woodland historian Susan Pierce.

THEN: This panorama could have used a tower (or drone) to better survey the size of the June 1, 191l, crowd gathered in Fremont/Ross to celebrate the beginning of construction on the Lake Washington Ship Canal. (Courtesy, Museum of History & Industry)

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

THEN: Ballard’s short-lived fire station at the southwest corner of Broadway (NW Market Street) and Burke Avenue (Russell Ave. NW) circa 1903. Looking northwest the view includes, above the horses, a glimpse of Sypher’s Hall, a rentable venue for playful and/or political events. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)

THEN: James Lee, for many years an official photographer for Seattle’s public works department, looks south over Ballard’s Salmon Bay a century ago. Queen Anne Hill marks the horizon, with a glimpse of Magnolia on the far right. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)

THEN: Captioned Salmon Bay, 1887, this is most likely very near the eastern end of the bay where it was fed by Ross Creek, the Lake Union outlet. (Courtesy, Michael Maslan Vintage Posters and Photographs)

THEN: A circa 1908 look northeast through the terminus of the Loyal Electric Street Railway line at the corner of now Northwest 85th Street, 32nd Ave. Northwest, and Loyal Way Northwest. (Courtesy, the Museum of History and Industry)

THEN: Ballard photographer Fred Peterson looks south-southeast on Ballard Avenue on February 3rd or 4th, 1916. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)

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THEN: If I have counted correctly this ca. 1930 Fremont Baptist Orchestra is appointed with three cellos, eleven violins and violas, two saxophones, two clarinets, one coronet, one oboe, one flute and two members who seem to be hiding their instruments. (courtesy Fremont Baptist Church)

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

THEN: Looking west from the southwest corner of 6th Ave. N. and Mercer St. to the trolley barn and yards for the (renamed in 1919) Seattle Municipal Railway in 1936. (Courtesy Lawton Gowey)

THEN: Like violence in a classic Greek play, the carnage suggested by this 1934 crash scene on the then new Aurora speedway was kept off stage, either behind the city’s official photographer, or in the county morgue. (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archive.)

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

Then: The thousands of skaters on Green Lake in this late January 1916 view could not have known that the skating would soon be over, one of the victims of the Big Snow of 1916. Courtesy Fairlook Antiques

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

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

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

Temporarily untended the Good Shepherd orchard awaits its fate, ca. 1978.

This rare glimpse of the rapid Ravenna Creek’s fall through Cowen Park was photographed not long before the stream that had had “topped off” Green Lake into Lake Washington’s Union Bay for thousands of years was shut off in 1911. (Photo courtesy of Jim Westall)

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MISC-INTERSPECIES ILLUSTRATED

Another (see above) from the Loman Album: a scene from First Hill, ca. 1890.
Looking East on John Street from near Aurora (before the speedway), from the Brown Family  collection, ca. 1905. .
One of the many Pike Market pigs, photographed by Jean Sherrard.
Another “Moclips Cow
In its time the hip confectionaire Pig-N-Whistle at 1009 2nd Avenue.

Mercer School, Lower Queen-Anne, can you find the cow?
Another Belltown Cow
Another Moclips, it seems,  milker
Wallingford Watch Dog, 4500 block on Bagley, Sept. 27, 2006
Ballard fish trap
Ballard fish preparation

 

Seattle Now & Then: Margaret Denny’s First Hill Home

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: The Margaret and Mary Ann Denny home spent its waning years, first in 1925 as The Chateau with rentable “accommodations for particular people in the most beautiful residence on First Hill,” followed in 1926-27 as The Hospitality Club, advertised as “for young business girls and students.”
NOW: Architect Earl W. Morrison’s Marlborough House assumed the corner in 1928. In an advertisement from January 24, the hotel’s management was already confident that “To live at Marlborough House is a mark of social distinction.” They were right.

While I do not know the exact date for this portrait of Margaret Denny’s First Hill home, it can be compared to another and similar photograph that appeared in the “Real Estate and Business News” section of The Seattle Times for July 1, 1901.  The newspaper’s caption reads, in part, “The accompanying halftone is a representation of the new Denny Home … one of the most sightly spots in the city.” I think in this instance “sightly” means both “good to look at” and “good to see from.” Understandably, the latter connotation was used repeatedly for promoting the Marlborough House Apartments, seen in Jean Sherrard’s repeat, which succeeded the Denny home in 1928.  From the Marlborough’s ten stories one could take in panoramas of both the Cascade and Olympic Mountains and the continued proliferation of other First Hill apartments as they more often than not replaced single-family homes, some of them near-mansions similar to the Denny Home.

A clip from The Times for July 7, 1901

The Times’ caption for its 1901 halftone continues, “The building was erected according to designs prepared by architects Charles Herbert Bebb and Louis Leonard Mendel … It is of brick and is of the Elizabethan Gothic style of architecture.” In their essay on Bebb and Mendel in “Shaping Seattle Architecture,” a UW Press book, architectural historians David A. Rash and Dennis A. Andersen credit Bebb and Mendel with building “the most prominent architectural practice in Seattle during the first decade and a half of the 20th Century.”  First Hill was increasingly dappled with their creations. In the spring of 1900 The Times credited Bebb with drawing Margaret Denny’s new home, adding that it was “perhaps the handsomest dwelling commenced this year.”

The footprint for Margaret Lenora Denny’s home appears near the center of this detail from the 1912 Baist Real Estate Map. It sits on lots 1 and 4 of block 116 of her parents, Arthur and Mary Denny’s Broadway Addition at the Northeast corner of Boren Avenue and University Street. For some unknown reason it has been marked by an earlier hand with a penciled “X” as has the kitty-corner kit at the northwest corner.  On lots 5 and 8, sits Margaret’s brother Orion Denny’s home, another Tudor.  Immediately below we join an illustrated clip on this neighbor.   North across University Street on Lot 9 of Block 115 rests the banker Backus’ brick home that we feature at the bottom of this little history.  
Like Margaret Denny’s home, her brother Orion Denny’s residence at 1204 Boren was designed by the architects Bebb and Mendel. They sat back-to-back on the east side of Boren Avenue between Seneca and University streets.

Both the featured photograph at the top and The Times halftone look to the northwest corner of Margaret Denny’s home.  Addressed at 1220 Boren Avenue, it rests on Lots 1 and 4 of Block 116 in Denny’s Broadway Addition – the southeast corner of University Street and Boren Avenue.  Arthur Denny, Margaret’s father and a Seattle patriarch, named the former street in the 1850s. He hoped to build a university – and did – in the early 1860s:  the University of Washington.  Boren Street was named for the family name of Mary Ann Denny and her brother Carson.  Arthur and Mary Ann Denny are most often described as the “Founders of Seattle” and their six children – younger daughter Margaret Lenora included – helped promote them as such. In 1901, two years after Arthur’s death, Mary Ann accompanied Margaret to their new First Hill home.  The industrious daughter, an astute business woman, at the time was collecting rent then from several renters, including The Seattle Times for the new plant it was building on Denny property downtown at Second Avenue and Union Street.

Margaret Lenora* Denny *namesake for the Seattle street.
A Times report from Nov. 2, 1930 on a tea scheduled for apartments in the Marlborough House.

Mother Mary Ann Denny died late in 1910.  The funeral was held on the first day of January 1911, here in their First Hill home.  Four years later the 68-year-old `Margaret Lenora Denny drowned in the Duwamish River with three others, after the chauffeured car they were riding in plunged into the river from the bridge at Allentown.

At the southwest corner of Boren and University, the Sunset Club was across Boren from Margaret Denny’s home.

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, amigos? Si  For his Edge Links we conspired to include 25 links that related to the neighborhood.  Twenty-sixth concludes the list not for any relevant to the Denny Home but for the sad stroke that recently closes Wallingford’s Guild 45 Theatre.

THEN: Looking east on University Street towards Ninth Avenue, ca. 1925, with the Normandie Apartments on the left.

BOREN-&-University-Denny-&-Ainsworth-Homes-THEN-mr

The northeast corner of University Street and Boren Avenue, across University from the Denny Home on the southeast corner.  Note that this subject is a rough continuation of the one above it.

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: Built quickly in the winter of 1906-07, the Prince Rupert Hotel faced Boren Avenue from the third lot north of Pike Street. About fifty-five years later it was razed for the I-5 Freeway. (Courtesy Lawton Gowey)

THEN: Built in the early twentieth century at the northeast corner of Jefferson Street and Boren Avenue, Bertha and Frank Gardner’s residence was large but not a mansion, as were many big homes on First Hill. (Courtesy Washington State Museum, Tacoma)

THEN: Looking north-northeast from a low knoll at the southwest corner of Seneca Street and Seventh Avenue, circa 1916. By 1925, a commercial automobile garage filled the vacant lot in the foreground. [Courtesy, Ron Edge]

THEN: Built in 1909-10 on one of First Hill’s steepest slopes, the dark brick Normandie Apartments' three wings, when seen from the sky, resemble a bird in flight. (Lawton Gowey)

THEN: Built in 1887, the Minor-Collins Home at the northeast corner of Minor Avenue and Cherry Street was one of the grandest and longest surviving pioneer mansions on First Hill. (Courtesy Historic Seattle)

THEN: First Hill’s distinguished Old Colony Apartments at 615 Boren Avenue, 1910.

THEN: The Perry Apartments is nearly new in “postcard artist” M. L. Oakes look at them south on Boren to where it intersects with Madison Street. (Courtesy John Cooper)

THEN: Of the three largest Seattle roofs – the Alki Point Natatorium, a grandstand section of the U.W.’s Denny Field, and the St. James Cathedral dome - that crashed under the weight of the “Northwest Blizzard” in February 1916, the last was the grandest and probably loudest. It fell “with a crashing roar that was heard many blocks distant.” (Courtesy Catholic Archdiocese.)

THEN: Completed in 1900, the Graham mansion on First Hill at the southwest corner of 9th Avenue and Columbia Street is getting some roof repairs in this 1937 photo looking south across Columbia Street. It was razed in the 1966 for a parking lot by its last owner and neighbor, the Catholic archdiocese.

THEN: At the northwest corner of Columbia Street and Boren Avenue, two of the more ordinary housing stock on First Hill in the 1890s. (Courtesy MOHAI)

sorrento-late-construction-WEB

THEN: An early view of Virginia Mason Hospital, which opened in the fall of 1920 at the northwest corner of Terry Avenue and Spring Street. In 1980 for its anniversary, the clinic-hospital could make the proud statement that it had “spanned sixty years and four city blocks.” Courtesy Lawton Gowey

THEN:

THEN: The brand new N&K Packard dealership at Belmont and Pike in 1909. Thanks to both antique car expert Fred Cruger for identifying as Packards the cars on show here, and to collector Ron Edge for finding them listed at this corner in a 1909 Post-Intelligencer. (Courtesy Museum of History and Industry.)

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)

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https://sherrlock.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/seattle-hight-school-lk-no-thru-pike-on-harvard-mr-then1.jpg?w=1110&h=684

THEN: Revelers pose on the Masonic Temple stage for “A Night in Old Alexandria,” the Seattle Fine Art Societies annual costume ball for 1921. (Pic courtesy of Arthur “Link” Lingenbrink)

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Moth, with thanks to Nabokov…

Perhaps you came for the Now & Then, which, never fear, is just below. But a couple of days ago, I came across a moth the size of a mouse, in its final hours, resting in a doorway. What a gift of watchful shadow and light.

Leslie Howells fingers provide size reference

Click to enlarge to full size:

“…And its wings…[were] developed to the limit set for them by God… There on the wall…was a great Attacus moth like those that fly birdlike around lamps in the Indian dusk. And then those thick wings, with a glazy eyespot on each and a purplish bloom dusting their hooked foretip, took a full breath under the impulse of tender, ravishing, almost human happiness.” –from ‘Christmas’ by Vladimir Nabokov

Seattle Now & Then: A Fifth Avenue Regrade, 1911

(click to enlarge photos)

THEN: Beginning in 1876, Seattle’s downtown streets were all regraded, starting on First Avenue (aka Front Street). Here, thirty-five years later in 1911, the cutting has reached Fifth Avenue at Cherry Street. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry)
NOW: For his “repeat” Jean Sherrard had two choices: to use his twenty-five foot extender pole to lift his camera closer to the elevation of the historical photographer, or to record Fifth Avenue looking north through its intersection with Cherry Street from the new grade made in 1911. He chose the latter.

This public works photograph looks into a regrade trench marked on its sides by the claws of the two steam shovels shaping the pit. The teams with their wagons wait patiently to be rattled while being filled with Ice Age droppings.  From another photo, also recorded on February 20, 1911, we know that at least two more wagons are here out-of-frame to the right. All are pointed north down the center of

The highest assigned number, “20128” – of the three surviving shots (either taken on February 20, 1911 or less likely developed then) of work on the 5th Avenue Regrade as it enters the intersection with Cherry Street.   A sign for the Crawford House is posted above the sidewalk, upper-right.  We will attach below The Times Classified section on “Spirit Mediuims” below.  Marked with yellow, we find Professor Ali Baba (hmm sounds familiar) from Bombay India, available for readings at the Crawford House, aka Bombay West.  (Courtesy MOHAI)
A Classified for an impressive handful of “spirit mediums” including Ali Baba and his readings in the Crawford House at the southeast corner of Fifth Avenue and Cherry Street in 1911.

Fifth Avenue at its new grade.  Ultimately, of course, Fifth Avenue will be hard-paved – it is in the contract – but not for the comfort of horses.  They prefer the mud.  After a wagon’s turn comes up and it is filled, its team will turn left (west) down the freshly dug cut on Cherry Street to the paved avenues below, proceeding to make its assigned delivery, perhaps on the tideflats.  The teams will try not to slip.

The same corner a little later and still looking north thru Cherry on 5th. Note that the residence on top has been lifted to blocks for moving to a new but not indicated location. Copies from The Times for March 30, 1911.

We can estimate the speed of this digging with a photograph published in The Seattle Times on March 30, 1911, “printed” above.  It aims in the same angle as the featured photo from the west side of Fifth Avenue, but The Times photographer has moved on and followed the shovels’ work to the north side of Cherry Street.  The stately home, near Columbia Street, seen in the featured photo at the top  in the clear light just to the left of the shovel’s exhaust also appears in The Times published photo, where it is, however, set on blocks preparing for removal to some friendlier lot.  The helpful Times caption also offers some context and statistics for this regradeThe Fifth Avenue Regrade reached from Washington Street to Madison Street and moved 190,00 cubic yards of earth at 49 cents a yard. (We may, again, sympathize with the horses.) The contracts for grading, sewerage, water mains, walks, lights and (to the horses potential distress) paving, came to $270,000.

The third surviving shot of the regrading at Fifth Avenue and Cherry Street. This looks south on Fifth and over Cherry.

Later in November, 1911, the work was stalled when the contractors Marks, Russell and Gallagher (their name is signed on each steam-shovel below the operator’s window) stopped digging until the city agreed to indemnify them from any further slides that might damage buildings along what was left of the Fifth Avenue Regrade.  By then seven structures had been wrecked, most of them near Yesler Way. (The THIRD of the Edge Links that follow this little essay will open another feature that concentrates on the Fifth Avenue slides at Yesler that accompanied the regrading of Fifth Avenue nearer its start.)

Public works watching was a popular pastime during the early 20th-century regrading years.  A line of regrade watchers seen in the featured photo on the right stand on or near Cherry Street. Soon, however, these spectators will have their platform upset when the shovels continue their clawing to the east (right) as far as Sixth Avenue where Cherry Street reaches a natural steppe, or plateau, that paused First Hill’s climbing for one block, as far as Seventh Avenue.

Above: A Times clip reporting on two renters fall into the regrade ditch while trying to move furniture from the Leland Hotel at 511 Cherry Street.  
The Leland Hotel’s footprint appears in red far left on the south side of Cherry Street, east of Fifth Avenue and next to the alley.  This detail is from the 1912 Baist Real Estate Map.   CLICK TO ENLARGE.

In this block between Fifth and Sixth Avenues the regraders exposed but did not upset the Kneeland House (aka the Leland Hotel), a red brick hostelry at 511 Cherry Street.  It was three-stories high with thirty-six rooms and set on the south side of the street just west of the alley.  The cutting on Cherry left the hotel about thirty feet higher, and with this difference came a tragedy.  On the fifteenth of November, renter Ella Johnson, with her helper Nettie Herserma, when lowering furniture from the hotel into the new cut, the hotel’s railing gave way. The women were delivered to the Wayside Hospital in the Bonney Watson hearse, which doubled as an ambulance when not busy with “loved ones.”  Struggling with a broken back, Johnson died, while Herserma recovered.

[from The Times for Sept. 21, 1912.  ASK HEAVY DAMAGES – Judgment for $100,000 for the death of Mrs. Ella J. Johnston was asked in the superior court yesterday afternoon against George Nicholls, owner of a building at 511 Cherry Street, which Mrs. Johnston rented.  On November 15 last a porch rail gave way beneath her weight and she was precipitated thirty feet to the ground, sustaining a broken back, from which injury she died later.  James T. Lawler, administrator of the estate, brought one suit for $50,000, and the three minor children of Mrs. Johnston joined in another for a similar amount.]

WEB EXTRAS

Anything to add, mates?  Many relevant links Jean – most either from the neighborhood or of other street regrades.   Note, again, there is more on the Fifth Avenue regrade in the third of the twenty-seven  “Edge Links” stacked immediately below.

THEN: The clerk in the city's old Engineering Vault attends to its records. Now one of many thousands of images in the Seattle Municipal Archives, this negative is dated Jan. 30, 1936. (Check out www.cityofseattle.net/cityarchives/ to see more.)

THEN: Seattle’s new – in 1910-11 – cluster-ball street lighting standards stand tall in this ca. 191l look north on Third Avenue from Seneca Street. (Courtesy, Museum of History and Industry.)

THEN: Looking north from Yesler Way over the Fifth Avenue regrade in 1911. Note the Yesler Way Cable rails and slot at the bottom. (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archive)

THEN: A winter of 1918 inspection of some captured scales on Terrace Street. The view looks east from near 4th Avenue. (Courtesy City Municipal Archives)

THEN: This “real photo postcard” was sold on stands throughout the city. It was what it claimed to be; that is, its gray tones were real. If you studied them with magnification the grays did not turn into little black dots of varying sizes. (Courtesy, David Chapman and otfrasch.com)

THEN: The city's regrading forces reached Sixth Avenue and Marion Street in 1914. A municipal photographer recorded this view on June 24. Soon after, the two structures left high here were lowered to the street. (Courtesy, Seattle Municipal Archives)

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 address written on the photograph is incorrect. This is 717 E. Washington Street and not 723 Yesler Way. We, too, were surprised. (Courtesy Seattle Municipal Archive)

THEN: Harborview Hospital takes the horizon in this 1940 recording. That year, a hospital report noted that "the backwash of the depression" had overwhelmed the hospital's outpatient service for "the country's indigents who must return periodically for treatment." Built in 1931 to treat 100 cases a day, in 1939 the hospital "tries bravely to accommodate 700 to 800 visits a day."

THEN: Friends of the Market president, architect Victor Steinbrueck, leads a cadre of Friends marching for Market preservation in front of the Seattle City Hall most likely on March 18, 1971. (Photo by Tom Brownell from the Post-Intelligencer collection at MOHAI)

THEN: Looking north from Columbia Street over the construction pit for the Central Building. On the left is a rough section of the Third Avenue Regrade in the spring of 1907. (Courtesy, MOHAI)

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

THEN: Pioneer mailman Dutch Ned poses on his horse on Cherry Street. The ca. 1880 view looks east over First Avenue when it was still named Front Street. (Courtesy: The Museum of History and Industry, aka MOHAI)

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