Our Society is frequently asked, “why is our community called Queen Anne?” It does seem strange for a pioneer western city to name its most prominent geographical feature after a relatively obscure 18th century British monarch. The short answer is that we are not named after the Queen, but are in fact named for the architectural style of the first houses built up the south slope of our hill. The longer answer shows how centennials can shape our view of the world.
In the 1870s, in England, architect Richard Norman Shaw introduced the Queen Anne or Free Classic residential design. It was intended to evoke domestic architecture of some 200 years earlier. The British public loved it, perhaps tiring of the demands of empire and nostalgic for a simpler past. …Continue reading “The Queen Anne Style – Our Neighborhood Namesake”→
George Bartell Sr. (1868-1956) established the nation’s oldest drugstore chain, originating in Seattle in 1890. In 1900, he and his second wife Beatrice Shaffer Bartell (1879-1969) became the first residents of the house at 1517 11th Avenue West – constructed by the father of the bride, Fisk Shaffer (in partnership with Joseph A. Moncrieff) of Montana. Shaffer Moncrieff, Building Contractors also constructed the adjacent multi-unit residential project at 1511 11th Avenue West.
The Matzen residence at 320 West Kinnear Place was constructed in 1910 – 1911. George Matzen was the owner and president of Matzen Manufacturing Company, a clothing manufacturer in Pioneer Square. He and his wife Irene occupied the house on the south slope of Queen Anne from 1910 until sometime in the 1930s. …Continue reading “320 West Kinnear Place: Matzen Residence”→
“At First Avenue West and West Garfield Street, these Craftsman bungalows are of minor significance individually. As a group, they provide a rhythm and consistency of scale.” Steinbrueck and Nyberg
No one understood better than Victor Steinbrueck and his colleague Folke Nyberg how much Seattle or Queen Anne’s historic working-class housing defined the city. The six identical working-class Craftsman bungalows they referred to in their 1975 poster still stand on West Garfield Street between the alley and First Ave. W. Four of them face north on Garfield; one sits on First Avenue W. while the sixth one backs up to it from the alley. As Steinbrueck and Nyberg suggest, the historic value of buildings often lies more in the urban patterns they create than in their individual distinctiveness.
In 1975, Victor Steinbrueck embarked on a project with Folke Nyberg and Historic Seattle to identify and publish a series of ten posters inventorying Seattle’s outstanding historic buildings. Queen Anne was lucky to get one of them. In fact, the Queen Anne Historical Society and its volunteers, some of whom are still active today (6/2018), worked on the project. Completing their survey in the early days of the American historic preservation movement, Steinbrueck and Nyberg were hell bent on recognizing that along with the high style buildings often favored by the movement, the vernacular ones were those that really defined a neighborhood’s historic character. The poster authors understood profoundly how a sense of place can give meaning to a community like ours. As Historic Seattle notes on its website, “Each inventory includes photographs and brief descriptions of common building types, significant buildings, and urban design elements.” …Continue reading “Our Sweet Queen Anne Cottages”→