Ken Giles grew up in the Greenwood/Phinney neighborhood in the 1930-40’s. At the age of thirteen, Ken started working for his uncle at Erickson’s Market on 87th & Greenwood. There began his lifelong passion for the grocery business.
He attended the University of Washington, where he rowed on the Crew team, and served two years in the Navy. He worked at several grocery stores in North Seattle, then in 1955 bought the IGA at 73rd & Greenwood, which became Ken Giles IGA. In 1964, Ken and his partner Vic Kaloper bought the store on Queen Anne, then sold it to concentrate on other branches.
Ken’s three sons — Greg, Steve, and Scott — worked with him in the business off and on as they grew up. In 1984, they repurchased the Ken’s Market Queen Ann store from the family Ken and Vic had sold it to.
Ken “officially” retired in 2001. In 2007, his grandson Eric Giles, along with partners George O’Connor and Joe Vizzare, bought the Queen Anne store — where all of them had grown up working.
Neighbors inspect a tree that fell over Howe Street at Nob Hill Avenue North during the Columbus Day Storm that hit the Pacific Northwest on October 12, 1962. The storm originated in the central Pacific Ocean as Typhoon Freda and became an extratropical cyclone as it moved over cooler waters and into the jet stream, producing sustained high winds and gusts of up to 80-180 mph that pummeled the coastline and western interior from Northern California to British Columbia. The storm caused 46 deaths and injured hundreds more. Damage was estimated at $250 million across the region, over $2 billion in today’s dollars. Oregon suffered the most damage, accounting for $200 million of the estimated total. The storm quickly weakened as it moved north past British Columbia. Although the region has been threatened by extratropical cyclones in the intervening 58 years, none have surpassed or even come close to matching the violent and destructive force of the 1962 Columbus Day Storm.
This article traces the life and work of architect Kirtland Cutter, whose early career transformed Spokane. The article is the work of Georgi Krom, a member of the Board of the Queen Anne Historical Society and a Spokane native. Although Kirtland Cutter did no work in our Queen Anne neighborhood, two of his important clients — C. D. and Harriet Stimson — moved from Queen Anne to the house he designed for them at the intersection of Terry Avenue and Spring Street, today called the Stimson Green Mansion. The Rainier Club, also Cutter’s work, probably influenced many design choices among its wealthy members, many of whom lived in Queen Anne.
The Arts and Crafts movement was a powerful, worldwide force in art and architecture. Historian Lawrence Kreisman showcases this era in his Oct 13, 2020 lecture for the Queen Anne Historical Society. You can hear his talk by clicking HERE. His book, The Arts and Crafts Movement in the Pacific Northwest, also describes this fascinating time period.
Beautifully designed furniture, decorative arts, and homes were in high demand from consumers in booming new cities. Local, natural materials of logs, shingles and stone were plentiful in the west and creative architects were needed. One of them was Kirtland Kelsey Cutter, who worked in Spokane, Seattle, and California. His imagination reflected the artistic values of that era — from rustic chapels and distinctive homes to glorious public spaces of great beauty. He was one of the most important architects in our state.
Cutter was born in Cleveland in 1860, the grandson of a distinguished naturalist. A love of nature was an essential part of Kirtland’s work and he integrated garden design and natural, local materials into his plans. He studied painting and sculpture in New York and spent several years traveling and studying in Europe. This exposure to art and culture abroad influenced his taste and the style of his architecture. The rural buildings of Europe inspired him throughout his career.