Cobble, Cobble, Cobblestones

In memory of Roger Billings, a staunch defender of our cobblestone streets.

Queen Anne is blessed (bicyclists disagree about that) with many cobblestone streets. Every fan of Queen Anne history knows that the stones provided traction for horses struggling up the hill. Most history buffs can’t explain their conservation, although their prevalence on steep streets suggests they helped both horses and horseless carriages navigate the slopes for a long time. Even though the street surfaces are not official city landmarks, they are charming anachronisms someone at the Seattle Engineering Department, now SDOT, decided to protect.

Looking west down Blaine at 7th.
Looking west down Blaine at 7th.

The most notable Queen Anne cobblestone streets on the west side of the hill can be found at Blaine where it drops down off Queen Anne Boulevard at 7th Ave., and on Howe as it plunges from the steps below 7th to 10th. On the east side, there is a stretch of cobbles on Warren N. running south from Lee that the Fire Department favors. Queen Anne has the greatest share of Seattle’s 93 cobblestone streets with the east side of Capitol Hill a close second. …Continue reading “Cobble, Cobble, Cobblestones”

Free Concert in Discovery Park

A post in support of our Magnolia neighbors…

A concert in Discovery Park? What better place to enjoy a summer Sunday?

‘Discover Music in the Park’ invites the whole community to experience music, dance and nature in Discovery Park to enjoy a unique collaboration between prominent Seattle classical music ensembles and dance companies, featuring Lake Union Civic Orchestra, Khambatta Dance Company, Kaleidoscope Dance Company, Bella Sala String Quartet and Seattle Phonographers Union. …Continue reading “Free Concert in Discovery Park”

Hiram M. Chittenden: A critical look at the man who built the Ballard Locks

Montlake Cut Opening Day, July 4, 1917 (courtesy of MOHAI)

July 4, 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Lake Washington Ship Canal and the Ballard Locks.

Feliks Banel, an intrepid marketeer of local history, produced a program that aired today June 28 on KIRO radio about Hiram M. Chittenden, the engineer who designed the entire system from Renton to Salmon Bay and re-plumbed King County waterways. Banel raises interesting points about local history and how we go about interpreting it, especially when we discover unsavory aspects.

 

 

The Fremont Bridge in 1936. It turns 100 on July 4.

Here’s the link to the broadcast:

Centennial reveals complicated legacy of Ballard locks’ namesake

Gargoyles Saved at Mercer Arena

Check this out. Historian Feliks Banel saved two of the four surviving gargoyles hidden since the 1962 World’s Fair until this week’s demolition uncovered them. http://www.king5.com/mb/news/local/seattle/demolition-unearths-gargoyles-historic-architecture-at-seattle-center/426646185