Stimson-Griffiths House – 405 W Highland Drive

Stimson-Griffith House, 1905
Stimson-Griffiths House, 1905

Frederick Spencer Stimson was the manager of the Stimson Mill in Ballard and with his brother C.D. Stimson prospered in the lumber business. Fred bought this property on West Highland Drive with a dramatic view of the harbor and began planning an equally substantial house for his family. He liked the English style, as did his neighbors Albert S. Kerry, Harry W. Treat and Charles H. Black. All these men went shopping for an architect and chose Charles Bebb, who designed this three-story house with stucco and half-timbered upper floors rising above a fortress-like stone ground floor punctuated by shingled bays on the south side. The cross-gabled roof with overhanging eaves terminate in decorative truss verge-boards. Notice the second floor sleeping balcony in the old photo which was popular and considered healthy at the time. Besides the impressive oak entrance foyer and drawing room there are a ballroom, billiard room and a sunroom. …Continue reading “Stimson-Griffiths House – 405 W Highland Drive”

Children’s Orthopedic Hospital – 100 Crockett St

Anna Herr Clise

Anna Herr Clise (1866-1936) had became painfully aware of the inadequacy of facilities for treating children when her 5-year-old son, Willis, died of inflammatory rheumatism in 1898. No physician or hospital in Seattle specialized in pediatric care at the time.

On January 4, 1907, Anna and 23 affluent Seattle women friends came together to found the Children’s Orthopedic Hospital Association. They did so to address a health care crisis – namely the lack of a facility to treat crippled and malnourished children. Each of the women contributed $20 to launch the hospital.

In October 1907, the Board of Trustees adopted a policy to accept any child regardless of race, religion, or the parents’ ability to pay.

The hospital started out in a wing of the Seattle General Hospital where 13 tubercular children received care.

Children's, Fresh Air Cottage, 1910
Children’s Cottage, 1910

Because more and more children were being received, it was necessary to seek their own facility. In a short time a lot, [on Crockett Street near Warren Avenue North] atop Queen Anne Hill, was purchased for $5,500. It was felt that the air was cleaner in this top of the town location and fresh clear air was vital to the tubercular children. From this came the name “Fresh Air Cottage.” The cottage had 12 beds and cost $2,218 to build.

In 1911, a 40-bed facility opened on an adjacent site. In 1953 the hospital moved to the Laurelhurst neighborhood of Seattle.

From “Fresh air cottage was start of Orthopedic Hospital on Queen Anne Hill in 1908”, in Queen Anne News, February 11, 1970, page 35:

“[W]omen throughout the city had rallied to the support of this struggling little institution, and there were 13 Orthopedic Guilds concerning themselves with the continuation of the vitally needed medical care for children. [The oldest on-going fundraiser is the Penny Drive started in 1932 during the Depression.]”

“In 1910, the cornerstone was laid for a 50-bed hospital [at First Avenue North and Boston], the nucleus of the building which housed the hospital until 1953. Bit by bit, additions were made: a laundry, X-ray room, brace shop, and so on. In 1919, a fourth floor was added and by 1928, an entire new wing.”

Today the building is known as Queen Anne Manor Senior Living.


Additional Reading

Housing Nurses and Nuns

Children’s, 1949
Children’s Hospital, 1949

It is hard to believe that comparing two Queen Anne buildings constructed to house single women would involve European Renaissance history, the impact of the Protestant rebellion on the Catholic Church and the exploitation of women workers in American hospitals. The buildings are the 1924 Frances Skinner Edris Nursing Home at First Ave. N. and Boston St., adjacent to the original Queen Anne site of Childrens’ Orthopedic Hospital; and the exquisite 1930 Saint Anne Convent at First Ave. W. and W. Comstock.

The historic link between the two buildings can be traced to the Reformation in the 16th century and the spread of Protestantism in Europe. Before the advent of Protestantism, all the nurses in European hospitals were nuns in the Catholic Church. Where Protestants became predominant, Catholic institutions including schools, universities and hospitals were shut down or replaced. The priests, monks and nuns were served in them were dispersed. As Sister Joseph of the Sisters of Providence Order who founded the state’s first hospital made clear, unlike 16th c. Central Europe or England, there was a place in the United States for hospitals associated with the Catholic Church. By the 20th c. in the United States, the women working as nurses in Protestant-managed and secular hospitals were not unlike the nuns they had replaced, single and in need of training and housing. …Continue reading “Housing Nurses and Nuns”