Article & photographs by Leanne Olson
On June 17, 2009, the (former) Seventh Church of Christ, Scientist located at 2555 8th Avenue West, designed by Harlan Thomas (Thomas & Grainger) in 1926, was designated a City of Seattle Landmark by unanimous vote of the Landmarks Board at their semi-monthly meeting. The landmark report was prepared and presented by Larry Johnson AIA, principal of The Johnson Partnership, with the assistance of Queen Anne Historical Society Landmarks Preservation Committee members Char Eggleston and Leanne Olson. Also in attendance were two granddaughters of architect Harlan Thomas — Koque Thomas Todd and Edith Williams Shuman — as well as Jay Kelly, Minister of the Seattle Church of Christ (current owners of the property). All ten board members present voted unanimously to approve the designation based on the building’s meeting three of the six designation criteria specified by the City of Seattle Landmarks ordinance.
The board agreed that the property meets criteria D, E and F because it embodies distinctive visible characteristics of an architectural style, it is an outstanding work of a designer, and it is an easily identifiable visual feature of its neighborhood. The exterior of the building, the main entrance foyer including the two cloakrooms, the auditorium including the speaker’s platform, and the site are covered by the designation. The Queen Anne Historical Society would like to express gratitude to the many community members and representatives of heritage organizations who helped to make this designation possible.
View the Historical and Cultural Resources Report (16 MB PDF) submitted to the Landmark Preservation Board to request designation of the church as a City of Seattle Landmark. This document contains detailed information about the church: its property, the architecture, its historical significance,photos and a copy of the original architectural plans from 1926.
View the City of Seattle Departments of Neighborhoods Historical Sites description of this property.