Queen Anne Historical Society 1971-

NOTE:  this article copied from Queen Anne Community on the Hill, by Kay Frances Reinartz, PhD, published by the Queen Anne Historical Society in 1993.
In 2021, the Society celebrates the 50th anniversary of its founding, with a 7/29 event and onward.

The Queen Anne Historical Society was founded in 1971 by the History Committee of the Queen Anne Community Council under the leadership of Louise Locke. The organization incorporated as non-profit and adopted the Kinnear Mansion as the society’s logo.  For over two decades [as of 1993] the society has worked in many areas to advance its mission of preservation of the community’s historic heritage. The society maintains a community history archive and holds bimonthly meetings which feature programs emphasizing community and Washington history.

Highlights of the Queen Anne Historical Society
Achievements with the Names of Leaders

1992-93    Sponsored Queen Anne Community History Book Project — Bob Frazier
1990         *C. H. Black House & Gardens, 615 W. Lee St.
1989         Published reprint of Homes & Gardens of the Pacific Coast, Seattle, 1913 — Michael, Ethel                             & James Kemp-Slaughter
1987        Sponsored first annual Christmas lighting contest focused on historic Queen Anne Blvd.
1986        Dedication of Captain Vancouver plaque at Betty Bowen Viewpoint and celebration —                                    Michael Kemp-Slaughter
1986        *Bethany Presbyterian Church, 1818 Queen Anne Ave. N.
1985        *Queen Anne High School, 215 Galer St.
1984        *Stuart/Balcom House, 619 W. Comstock St.
1984        *Bowen/Huston Bungalow 715 W. Prospect St.
1983        Society Newsletter founded:  “Great Queen Anners” list of historic community leaders                                      compiled for the state “Great Washingtonians” project — Kathryn Seymour
1983        *Handschy/Kistler House, 2433 9th Ave. W.
1981        Queen Anne Oral History Project — Ron Palmer
1981        *North Queen Anne Bridge, over Wolf Creek Ravine
1980        *Brace/Moriarty House, 618 W. Highland Dr.
1980        Cleaned pioneer graves and mapped Mt. Pleasant Cemetery, 1980 — Ray Bronson
1980        *Parsons/Gerrard House, 618 W. Highland Dr.
1980        Parsons Memorial Garden, immediately west of 618 W. Highland Dr.
1980        *McFee/Klockzien House, 524 W. Highland Dr.
1979        *Ballard/Howe House, 22 W. Highland Dr.
1979        *Fourteenth Ave. W. Group, 2000-2016 Fourteenth Ave. W.
1978        *Chelsea Apartment Building, 620 W. Olympic Pl.
1978        *Cotterill House, 2501 Westview Dr. W.
1978        *De La Mar Apartment Building, 115 W. Olympic Pl.
1977-81    Queen Anne heritage calendar produced:  1977, Jan Clow; 1979, Pauline Hanover; 1980,                                 1981, Ray Bronson
1977        *West Queen Anne Elementary School, 515 W. Galer St.
1976        *Willcox Wall, west side 8th Ave. W. to 8th Pl. W.
1976        Assisted with historical research in production of historical U.S. Bicentennial edition of                                    the Queen Anne News, 1976 — Jon Bartlett, Susan Christenson, Alice Ellis
1976        Historic walking tour and tour brochure produced — Howard Lovering, Alice Ellis

*Designated official City of Seattle Landmark


Uptown Theatre

Uptown Theatre, Seattle, WA in 1926
The property at 511 Queen Anne Avenue North, now housing SIFF Cinema Uptown, originally opened May 26, 1926 as a single-screen movie house known as Hamrick’s Uptown Theatre, developed by John Hamrick who originated several theatres in Seattle, Tacoma, and Portland.  Architect Victor Voorhees designed the building, as well as the nearby MarQueen Apartments (originally the Seattle Engineering School).  The theatre had 750 seats and a tiny Wurlitzer pipe organ.
The Uptown Theater in 1937, long before the owners added the distinctive marquee. The theater has always been a focal point of the community.  Photos courtesy of the Queen Anne Historical Society

As Michael Herschensohn’s 2011 Queen Anne News article details, in 1947 and again in 1953, its owners hired architect B. Marcus Priteca to design updates to the building, including adding the current marquee.
The Uptown in 1954, with the year-old marquee. The theater would face a major renovation in 1984 when two additonal theaters were added. Photos Courtesy of the Queen Anne Historical Society

In 1984, the theatre annexed  two adjacent properties south of the original venue, tearing down one of them which had housed a restaurant.  The remodel preserved the original ornamented brick façade while constructing a concrete block structure inside of it.  Now the theatre had three screens plus an expanded lobby.  The updated original auditorium seats 450, and the additions seat 250 and 150.
SIFF Cinema Uptown in Seattle, WA - Cinema Treasures
In November 2010, theatre operator AMC announced it would close the property.
In 2011 Seattle International Film Festival  / SIFF acquired the theatre and reopened it as an “art house cinema.”
SIFF Cinema Uptown

Many people enjoy visiting Dick’s Drive-In — right across the street — before or after their movie experience.
Note:  Over the course of its history, the building has used the titles ‘theatre’ and ‘theater’ interchangeably.
*”SIFF to reopen Uptown as art-house theater,” by Moira McDonald, The Seattle Times 8/6/2011
*”Historic Seattle Uptown Theater is back and better than everBusinesswire 10/20/2011
*”Queen Anne’s Uptown Theater has always been a marquee location,” by Michael Herschensohn, Queen Anne News 11/10/2011
*”Seattle Uptown got a new name, but a historic landmark shines on,” by Gabriel Campanario, The Seattle Times 7/18/2021
*City of Seattle Department of Neighborhoods Historical Sites

Historic Name Change

On April 12, 2021, the Seattle City Council unanimously passed a resolution that recognizes ‘Uptown’ as the correct name for the neighborhood many refer to as “Lower Queen Anne.”
District 7 Councilmember Andrew J. Lewis — who resides in a historic Uptown building — sponsored the bill.
Among supporters of the bill:  Uptown Alliance

A front-page article in the Queen Anne & Magnolia News  of April 21, 2021 cites Queen Anne Historical Society President Michael Herschensohn, noting
Herschensohn said he didn’t used to buy into the insistence by Uptown Alliance founders that the neighborhood should be called Uptown, rather than Lower Queen Anne.  In retrospect, however, he believes it just makes sense.  First, the name Uptown was used in the names of various businesses and buildings for quite some time.  The Uptown Theatre, now the SIFF Cinema Uptown, was built in 1926, and played an integral part of the community’s history, Herschensohn said. 

Plus, Herschensohn said the name Uptown has been used in many cities as an opposite of downtown, which was the case in Seattle. ‘It makes sense to call it Uptown.'”