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Entries Tagged as 'History'

Learn more about historic Queen Anne apartments this Thursday at a free QAHS talk

March 24th, 2015 by Laura Fonda

Victoria AptsThe Queen Anne Historical Society continues its series of free presentations and lectures on historic Queen Anne apartment buildings this Thursday, March 26th. If you have an interest in the history of our neighborhood or how apartments helped shape it, be sure to mark your calendar for this week’s talk.

The meeting will be held at St. Anne Catholic Church (1411 1st Ave W) at 7pm and features Kim Myran, one of the co-authors of the QAHS book, “Queen Anne: Community on the Hill” – a must-read for Queen Anne residents and history buffs alike.

QAHS bookMyran will delve into the “Apartments and Development on the Hill” chapter that focuses on multifamily housing development from 1890 to 1940 – specifically speaking to the building changes, additions, and disappearances since the book’s 1993 publication date.

The book has a variety of essays and chapters on various elements of Queen Anne history. You can order a copy online from the QAHS web site. Highly recommended reading!

Join the QAHS on Thursday, March 26th at 7pm to learn more about the buildings that help shape the character of Queen Anne, both today and through the years. Parking is available in the church lot at W Galer & 1st Ave W or in the St. Anne School’s lot at 101 W. Lee St.

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Queen Anne Historical Society wins 4Culture grant

February 5th, 2015 by Laura Fonda

QAHS logoThanks to its ongoing efforts to preserve the heritage of Queen Anne, the Queen Anne Historical Society has been awarded a grant from 4Culture, King County’s cultural services agency.

After a highly competitive process through 4Culture’s Heritage Sustained Support program, QAHS was named a recipient of an award of $2,000 per year for both this year and next.

4culture logoThe Heritage Sustained Support program recognizes organizations with a two-year history of interpreting heritage and providing programs and experiences to King County residents. QAHS meets these requirements with ease; it’s been active since 1971, has documented our neighborhood’s history in a community archive, and hosted free events including historical presentations and the annual Mt Pleasant Cemetery tour.

According to QAHS President, Michael Herschensohn:

“We are so proud to be recognized in this way by 4Culture. Funding from 4Culture will allow us to carry on important work to preserve Queen Anne’s heritage, while providing an opportunity to extend our footprint in the community.”

4Culture praised QAHS’ work in promoting diverse creative activities, community identity, and history for King County residents and visitors. QAHS President Michael Herschensohn commented on both the role of QAHS and the significance of a supporting organization like 4Culture:

“The Queen Anne Historical Society is uniquely positioned to influence the preservation of the historic character of our neighborhoods. This award acknowledges our successes and provides resources to continue the good work. 4Culture’s grant programs sustain many arts and heritage organizations. King County is lucky to have such a forward looking funding source.”

The Queen Anne Historical Society is an independent non-profit organization and is open to all with an interest in the history of Queen Anne. You can check out membership information and learn more about our neighborhood’s history via QAHS articles and upcoming events.

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Third annual Seattle Stairway Walks Day features popular Southwest Queen Anne route

January 24th, 2015 by Laura Fonda

wilcox wall stairsFor the past two years, Feet First has organized a Seattle Stairway Walks Day that includes a very popular Southwest Queen Anne route. This year, it’s a three-peat as the Queen Anne route is again on the list of stairway walks around Seattle.

Tickets are available online for a suggested donation of $10 (you can give more or less), and since it’s a family-friendly event, kids under 18 are free. Ticket proceeds will help nonprofit Feet First in its efforts to make communities across the state more walkable.

All of the 14 stairway walks begin at 10am and runs (walks) through noon on Saturday, February 7th. Here’s the description for the Southwest Queen Anne Walk:

Southwest Queen Anne Walking Tour
Queen Anne hill can be roughly divided into four distinct quadrants, each with its own look and feel. Southwest Queen Anne is the elegant one. On this route we’ll visit the stately, neo-Gothic Wilcox Wall; climb secluded stairways and cobblestone lanes beneath towering trees and opulent homes; and take in famous, wide-open views across the city.
Walk Leader: John Stewart, Feet First Board Member
Numbers: 2.6 miles: 588 steps down, 477 steps up

QA Stairs ComstockIn the past, the Queen Anne walk has been one of the most popular on the list, selling out quickly. If you’d like to reserve one of the 35 available spots, RSVP online asap.

If you’d like to explore other neighborhoods, check out the full list here.

Love to walk and want to share our neighborhood with others? You can volunteer to become a neighborhood ambassador or a Feet First member, and lead future Queen Anne walks. Get out and get walking!

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QAHS presents free talk on Queen Anne apartments and women developers this Thursday

January 19th, 2015 by Laura Fonda

Do you live in one of Queen Anne’s historic apartment buildings or just admire them from the exterior? Or, are you interested in the history of women developers on Queen Anne. If yes to one or more of these questions, mark your calendars.

QAHS Diana JamesThe Queen Anne Historical Society (QAHS) continues its exploration of Queen Anne apartment buildings with a free talk this Thursday, January 22nd. Bringing in an expert in the field, QAHS hosts Diana James, historian and author of “Shared Walls: Seattle Apartment Buildings, 1900-1939”.

James will focus her talk, Women Developers in Seattle, on women apartment developers who made their mark on our neighborhood between 1900 and 1930.

The free event will be held at the Queen Anne Christian Church, 1316 3rd Ave W, and begins at 7pm. Light refreshments will be served after the talk.

All are welcome to attend the talk and learn more about the history of Queen Anne, and the role that women developers played in the evolution of apartment dwelling in our neighborhood.

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Queen Anne Historical Society hosts a free talk on Queen Anne apartments this Thursday

November 18th, 2014 by Laura Fonda

Narada Apartments

Narada Apartments,
photo courtesy of Queen Anne Historical Society

Walking around Queen Anne you can spot all shapes and sizes of apartment buildings – big, small, brick, or wood – some prominently featured along main arterials, others tucked into quiet spots in the neighborhood. If you’ve ever been intrigued by these various apartment buildings, this Thursday’s event is the Queen Anne Historical Society meeting for you.

QAHS is hosting a free talk at 7pm this Thursday, November 20th, entitled “Apartment Buildings and their Changing Impacts on Neighborhood Character” by Mimi Sheridan. According to QAHS, Sheridan’s master’s thesis is the “go-to source of information about the apartment buildings on Queen Anne’s south slope” – and she’s considered one of the most well-regarded preservation historians in Seattle. Plus, the event is free and light refreshments will be served.

QA Masonic Lodge

The meeting venue is also of note – it’ll be held at the historic Queen Anne Masonic Lodge #242 at 1608 4th Ave W.

One of the first buildings on Queen Anne, the structure dates back to c. 1905. It hasn’t always been a Masonic Lodge. As a former telephone exchange, the site hosted telephone operators who helped connect Queen Anne residents via the new-fangled technology of the day.

Clubhouse Interior

The Clubhouse Interior
Photo courtesy of The Clubhouse

The Masonic Lodge has undergone a rebranding as it opened its doors for events. “The Clubhouse on Queen Anne” can be rented for events, even providing catering and alcohol service for your events. The photos on its web site showcase a rich-but-cozy interior that you wouldn’t guess existed from the pale blue exterior.

Learn more about the apartments that contribute to Queen Anne’s character this Thursday and step back in time, all are welcome!

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Two Seattle Center buildings approved for historic landmark status

October 21st, 2014 by Laura Fonda

International Fountain MOHAI

International Fountain Pavilion, photo courtesy of MOHAI

The Seattle City Council has approved the historic designation of the Seattle Center’s Northwest Rooms and International Fountain Pavilion. Both buildings were designed by architect Paul Thiry for the 1962 World’s Fair.

These two newest Seattle Center landmark buildings join others such as the Space Needle, the Seattle Center House (aka the Armory), and the Monorail. A complete overview of the Seattle Center campus and the buildings that are either landmarks or pending landmark status is available as a pdf.

Northwest Rooms Ken Prichard

Northwest Rooms, photo courtesy of Ken Prichard

The Seattle Department of Neighborhoods Historic Preservation Program is responsible for the designation and protection of over 400 historic structures, sites, objects, and vessels.

You can learn more about landmark designation and also search the full list of city landmarks online.

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Fionia Apartments nominated for Seattle Landmark status

August 2nd, 2014 by Laura Fonda

Fionia EntranceBuilt in 1922 at 109 John Street, between 1st Ave N and Warren Ave N, the Fionia Apartments has been nominated for Seattle Landmark status. The Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board put together the nomination for the property owners, which details the building’s history and recommendation for Landmark Status.

Fionia ArchiveThe Landmarks Preservation Board will consider the nomination at a meeting on Wednesday, September 17, 2014.

The meeting will be held at 3:30pm in the Seattle Municipal Tower, 700 5th Avenue, 40th Floor, Room 4060. The public is invited to attend the meeting and make comments.

If you can’t attend the meeting, but would like to voice your opinion, you can submit written comments to the Landmarks Preservation Board. Send comments to the following address by 3pm on September 16, 2014:

Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board, Dept. of Neighborhoods
P.O. Box 94649
Seattle WA 98124-4649

According to the SLBP:

“Designated landmarks are those properties that have been recognized by the City as important resources to the community, city, state or nation. The Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board is responsible for determining what properties meet the standards for landmark designation. Designated landmark properties in Seattle include individual buildings and structures, vessels, landscapes and parks, and objects such as street clocks and sculptures.”

Fionia currentYou can read more about the four-step Landmark status process online.

Stay tuned to see if Fiona Apartments joins other Queen Anne Seattle Landmark properties such as Seattle Pacific University’s Alexander Hall, the Ballard-Howe House on Highland Drive, Hay School (now housing Queen Anne Elementary), Kinnear Park, N Queen Anne Drive Bridge, the Pacific Science Center, Parsons Garden, Queen Anne Boulevard, Queen Anne High School, Queen Anne Library, the Monorail, the Space Needle, and West Queen Anne Elementary School.

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Join the QAHS for a tour of modern architecture on Queen Anne

May 25th, 2014 by Laura Fonda

If you’re a fan of modern architecture and want to see striking examples on a guided tour, mark your calendars for Saturday, June 14th. The Queen Anne Historical Society is hosting a “Modern Queen Anne” tour that highlights Canlis and the Swedish Club, along with five recently completed new residential homes.

QAHS Modern TourThere are two versions of the tour available – one by car, one by bike. Pick your poison and join the QAHS to learn more about the mid-century architectural style embodied by Canlis and the Swedish Club, and hear from the architects of the five contemporary homes. Note – the tour is of the exteriors only, no interior access.

The bike tour begins at 1:30pm at the Swedish Club (1920 Dexter Ave N), the car tour begins at 2pm at Canlis (2576 Aurora Ave N). Refreshments (coffee and princess cake) will be provides at the Swedish Club for tour attendees.

Tickets are available via Brown Paper Tickets – $15 for QAHS members, $20 for non-members.

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Queen Anne Historical Society meeting on Thursday highlights Queen Anne Christian Church

March 24th, 2014 by Laura Fonda

QA Christian ChurchThis season’s Queen Anne Historical Society (QAHS) meetings have focused on local Queen Anne churches, and the tour de church is wrapping up this Thursday, March 27th, 7pm, at the Queen Anne Christian Church.

Build in 1911, the church is located at 1316 3rd Ave W at the corner of Lee and 3rd Ave W. The QAHS meeting begins at 7pm with a tour of the church by Pastor Laurie Rudel, highlighting the history of the church, its original structure and renovations, and its role in the Queen Anne community.

In addition to original 1911 architecture, the church includes a sanctuary from the 1950s that was remodeled in 2000 with an ear to acoustics – the sanctuary is a popular venue for concerts today.

All are welcome to attend the meeting and tour to learn more about Queen Anne history!

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Windstorm knocks down tree next to Ballard Mansion on Highland Drive

January 12th, 2014 by Laura Fonda

The winds today were not kind to a tree along the side of the Ballard Mansion (aka Ballard House) at 22 W Highland Dr. A reader sent us the video that was sent to KING 5 (thanks, Mark!) – you can see the tree come down to the left of the house:

Ballard House video

The Ballard House was spared from tree damage. Built in 1901 as the home of Martin D. Ballard, founder of the Seattle Hardware Company, the home now houses six apartments.

According to the KING 5 article, the house was undamaged as the tree landed in between the house and a garage. Here’s a picture of where it landed from a reader via Facebook (thanks, Rhia!):

Ballard House side view

This downed tree may help explain an earlier power outage near Highland and Queen Anne Ave N, which has since been resolved, per Seattle City Light.

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Queen Anne library turns 100 in January – help mark a century with your own scrapbook entry

December 16th, 2013 by Laura Fonda

QALibraryOur Queen Anne library branch one of the coolest spots on Queen Anne – ok, I’m partial to libraries, but you have to admit, our branch is beautiful!

What makes our library so special, other than that it’s ours? Well, for starters, it’s one of six Carnegie libraries in Seattle. From the brickwork to the windows to the multi-colored roof, I think everyone can admit it’s pretty unique and a special spot on Queen Anne.

Library Plaque

Plaque with 1913 construction date

Andrew Carnegie gave Seattle $200,000 to build a new fireproof library after the original Yesler Mansion burned in 1901. In 1910, he went on to donate $105,000 for the West Seattle, Green Lake, and University District branches. Another gift of $70,000 resulted in our Queen Anne branch in 1914 and the Columbia branch in 1915.

The Queen Anne branch is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and has been designated as a landmark building by Seattle’s Landmarks Preservation Board. In addition to its architectural significance, the Queen Anne branch is also a key part of our neighborhood’s history, and it’s celebrating a big birthday – 100 years – in January.

QA Library kids

SPL Collection: Queen Anne Library branch
ca. late 1950s-early 1960s
Submitted by Mrs. Floyd W. Mason, Jr. Queen Anne Manor

It looks pretty good for a centenarian (thanks in part to a 2007 renovation), and is well loved by patrons both young and old.

Although, it did cause quite a stir for one Queen Anne resident 100 years ago – one parent sent the following letter to Miss Helen Watson, the branch’s first children’s librarian:

“Dear Madam: Will you please stop John and Mary from getting any more books as we can’t get anything out of them at all – they won’t go to bed at night and won’t get up in the morning and won’t do anything but read when they do get up.”

To celebrate the special anniversary, the Seattle Public Library is planning a free celebration at the Queen Anne branch on Sunday, January 12th from 2pm to 4pm. Activities include:

  • Goodwill’s Vintage Fashion Collection exhibit of vintage clothing and an interactive hat show – step back in time and try on one or more of 50 vintage hats!
  • Historical information provided by Queen Anne Historical Society
  • Music and refreshments
  • A commemorative bookmark
  • Children’s craft activity making whirligigs
QA Library Scrapbook paper

Queen Anne library scrapbook paper
Pick up yours today!

And, you can be a part of the preparations via an anniversary scrapbook that the library is putting together. Just stop by the library and share written stories now about your favorite Queen Anne branch experiences on specially designed scrapbook paper.

The paper is available now at the branch, so be sure to take part in the storytelling today.  Your story may be featured in another 100 years, just as the “stop John and Mary from getting any more books” story was shared today!

The anniversary scrapbook will be on display during the celebration, so make plans now to share your stories to mark the happy occasion. If you can’t make it to the library, you can also email your story to carnegiememories@spl.org and it’ll be included in the scrapbook. Submissions will be taken up to January 12th.

And, mark your calendars to join in the celebration on January 12th, and Happy (early) Birthday, Queen Anne library!

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Queen Anne Historical Society showcases Bethany Presbyterian on Thursday

November 19th, 2013 by Laura Fonda

As part of its ongoing series of presentations on historic Queen Anne churches, the Queen Anne Historical Society is holding its community meeting this Thursday at Bethany Presbyterian Church. The meeting begins at 7pm and all are welcome to join and learn about the “best kept historic preservation secrets” of the church at 1818 Queen Anne Ave. N.

BethanyAccording to the QAHS, the sanctuary has been taken apart and built again to meet today’s high seismic standards. Steve Stroming of RAFN, the project contractor, will explain the church’s retrofitting and preservation success story.

Church staff-member Sylvia Lidell will provide an overview of congregation history since the church’s founding 125 years ago this month. (Happy Anniversary, Bethany Presbyterian!)

The meeting is free and open to all members of the community, and light refreshments will be provided.

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