Name (common, present, or historic): Great Western Motors Building

Year Built: 1920

Street and Number: 1158 Broadway (aka 905 E. Union)

Assessor's File No. 1978201295

Legal Description: See attached

Plat Name: AA Denny’s Broadway Addition Block: 141 Lot: 1-2

Present Owner: The Polyclinic Present Use: Storage

Address: 1145 Broadway, Seattle WA 98122
(Primary Contact for owner: Chris Rossman, UrbanEvolution LLC, 999 N. Northlake
Way, Suite 306, Seattle WA 98103)

Original Owner: Edward F. Sweeney

Original Use: Automotive sales and service

Architect: Victor W. Voorhees

Builder: Unknown

Great Western Motors Building

Seattle Landmark Nomination

July 24, 2013

This report was prepared by:

Nicholson Kovalchick Architects
310 First Avenue S., Suite 4-S
Seattle WA 98104

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Great Western Motors Building
Seattle Landmark Nomination


I. Introduction 3

II. Building information 4

III. Architectural description 5

A. Site and adjacent neighborhood context
B. Building exterior and structure
C. Building interior
D. Summary of primary alterations

IV. Historical context 9

A. Early site development
B. The development of the Pike-Pine “Auto Row” in Seattle
C. Building owners and occupants
D. Paige automobiles
E. The architect, Victor W. Voorhees
F. The engineer, Henry W. Bittman

V. Bibliography and sources 25

VI. Preparer and Reviewer information 27

VII. Report illustrations
A. Current maps, context, and images of the building 28
B. Historic maps, context, and images of the building 36
C. Other work by the architect, Victor W. Voorhees 52
D. Other work by the engineer, Henry W. Bittman 60

Appendix A: Graphic summary of primary alterations to elevations 62

Site plan, selected architectural images Following

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


This report was written at the request of the developers of the property, The Wolff Company and Urban Evolution
LLC, with the permission of the owners, The Polyclinic, as part of the Seattle land-use permit and SEPA process to
ascertain the historical nature of the subject building.

Sources used in this report include:
• Records of permits and original drawings from the Seattle Department of Planning and Development microfilm
library, as well as Tract Book images on microfilm which indicate chain of ownership of the property.
• Assessor's photographs and property card from the Puget Sound Regional Archives in Bellevue, Washington.
• Newspaper, book, city directories, and maps referencing the property (see bibliography).
• Author's on-site photographs and building inspection, or by other NKA employees.
• Information on owners and residents was derived from the sources above; a title search was not conducted
on the property.
• Historic photographs of the subject property provided an important source of information regarding changes
to the exterior to the building.

Unless noted otherwise, all images are by NK Architects and date from the first quarter of 2013.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


Name (recent): Complete Automotive

Name (original): Great Western Motors Building

Year Built: 1920

Street & Number: 1158 Broadway (aka 905 E. Union)

Assessor’s File No.: 1978201295

Original Owner: Edward F. Sweeney

Primary Contact: Chris Rossman (Developer, and Owner’s representative)
Urban Evolution LLC
999 N. Northlake Way, Suite 306
Seattle WA 98103

Present Owner: The Polyclinic
1145 Broadway
Seattle, WA 98122
Contact: Randal Brand, Director of Facilities and Support Services

Present Use: Storage

Original Use: Automobile sales and service

Original Architect/Builder: Victor W. Voorhees

Original Engineer: Henry W. Bittman

Plat/Block/Lot: AA Denny’s Broadway Addition / Block 141 / Lots 1-2

Legal Description: Lots 1 and 2, Block 141, A.A. Denny’s Broadway Addition to the City of Seattle,
According to the Plat thereof recorded in volume 6 of plats, page 40, in King County,
Washington, Except that portion of said lot 1 heretofore condemned in King County
Superior Court cause number 61476 for widening of East Union street as provided by
ordinance no. 17972 of the City of Seattle:. Together with West 7 feet of old 10

Avenue (now Broadway Court) adjacent to said premises on the East vacated by
Ordinance Number 26803 on which is attached thereto by operation of law.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


A. Site and adjacent neighborhood context

The subject site is located at the south end of the Capitol Hill neighborhood, at the point where the adjacent First Hill
and Squire Park neighborhoods meet in a saddle between low hills. Some sources, such as the 1975 Steinbrueck /
Nyberg neighborhood inventory, place this property in the First Hill neighborhood. [See context photos pp. 28-29]

The site is located on the southeast corner of the intersection of Broadway Avenue and E. Union Street. The property
is on a rectangular lot approximately 159 feet east to west and 100 feet north to south, and the building occupies the
entire lot. The site slopes gently downward from south to north.

Across E. Union Street to the north is the former Johnson and Hamilton Mortuary, which is now a local office for
Gilda’s Club Seattle (a foundation and space devoted to supporting those living with cancer). To the east, across an
alley-like right of way called Broadway Court, there are two low-rise buildings housing automotive detailing and storage
businesses. The south side of the property is a shared party wall with a 1928 building that was renovated in recent
decades into an upscale bowling alley and pool hall. The other buildings on the block consist of a parking garage and
the Silver Cloud hotel at the junction of Madison and Broadway.

The site is located in NC3-65 zone and within the Pike/Pine Urban Center Village, and adjacent to the 12
Urban Center Village to the south, and the First Hill Urban Center Village Overlay west of the site. Zoning heights vary
considerably nearby, from a maximum 65 feet to a maximum of 160 feet within a few blocks. The site is also located
within Pike/Pine Conservation Overlay District and the Conservation Core within this district.

The immediate neighborhood is primarily a dense mix of commercial, mixed-use, institutional and civic buildings, with
few single-family houses nearby (the nearest areas characterized by single-family homes are primarily northeast of Pine
Street and 12
Avenue, or southeast of 13
Avenue and Union). While the neighborhood has been continuously
developed every decade from the 1880s to the present, the area was heavily developed in the decades between 1900-
1930. The immediate area derives considerable character from automobile-related service buildings and showrooms
built between about 1910 and 1925. The Pike-Pine Corridor just northwest and northeast of the site is notable
throughout the city for a vibrant urban living, working, dining, and entertainment environment, particularly in recent

The largest institutional presence in the immediate area are Seattle University, Seattle Central Community College, and
Swedish Hospital. The Polyclinic medical center is located across Broadway from the site, and is the owner of the
subject property.

Seattle historic landmarks within a six block radius include:
• Old Fire Station #25 (Somervell & Cote, 1909), at E. Union Street and Harvard Avenue
• Seattle First Baptist Church (Ulysses G. Fay, 1911), at Seneca Street and Harvard Avenue
• Broadway Performance Hall (Edgar Blair, 1911), at Broadway and E. Pine Street
• First African Methodist Episcopal Church (1912), at E. Pine Street & 14
• Cal Anderson Park, Lincoln Reservoir and Bobby Morris Playfield (Olmsted Brothers, 1901, altered), at 11

Avenue between E. Pine Street and Denny Way
• St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Cathedral (1937), at about E. Olive Street & 13
• Coca-Cola Bottling Plant (Graham & Painter, 1939), at 14
Avenue and E. Columbia Street
• Dearborn House (c. 1909), at 1117 Minor Avenue
• Summit Grade School (1905), at 1415 Summit Avenue

Some notable nearby buildings that are not landmarks include:
• Temple de Hirsch Sinai Synagogue (Detlie & Peck, with B. Marcus Priteca, 1959-60), at 15
Avenue and E. Pike
• Chapel of St. Ignatius Loyola (Steven Holl, 1997), at 11
Avenue and E. Spring Street on the Seattle University
• Garrand Building (John Parkinson, 1894, altered), at 10
Avenue and E. Marion Street on the Seattle University
• Odd Fellows Temple (Carl Breitung, 1908-10), at 10
Avenue and E. Pine Street

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

• Egyptian Theater (former Masonic Temple, by Saunders & Lawton, 1916), at Harvard Avenue and E. Pine

A 1975 historic resources inventory of the First Hill neighborhood by Victor Steinbrueck and Folke Nyberg (part of
their citywide inventory project) describes three categories of historic building significance: significant to the city,
significant to the community, or of no significance. Their inventory called out the subject building as being of no
significance, although the former Johnson and Hamilton Mortuary across the street to the north was noted by the
survey as being significant to the city.

B. Building Exterior and Structure

The building was constructed in 1920 as an automobile sales showroom and service building. Historically, the subject
building was addressed as 905 E. Union or 1158 Broadway, but occupies a narrow block with three street frontages
along E. Union, Broadway, and the small street Broadway Court. The building represents an example of masonry and
heavy timber mill construction, with extensive storefront glazing, typical of “Auto Row” service buildings in the area.
Today it is unoccupied and used for office equipment and furniture storage by the owner. [See exterior photos pp.
30-32, and 35]

The building is rectangular in plan, and divided into five approximately equal 20-foot structural bays on the east and
west elevations, and eight on the north. Notations on the original drawings indicate that the building was originally
designed with the automobile showroom and parts room along Union Street, wrapping the corners, and occupying the
northernmost two bays of the building. The exterior and interior finishes of these two bays were generally higher
quality and intended to appeal to customers—including terrazzo floors and beamed ceilings. The south or rear three
bays were originally used for the service and repair of automobiles, and were (and remain) more utilitarian in character
on the exterior and interior—including concrete floors and exposed structural elements.

The building is one story, measuring 18 feet 6 inches in height, and has a 9 foot partial basement measuring 40 x 35 feet
in plan. The basement contains mechanical equipment only—originally the boiler—and was not investigated for this
report. Tax records from 1937 describe the structure as concrete foundation (drawings indicate spread footings under
the masonry piers), unreinforced 9” brick exterior walls with interior concrete piers supporting roof beams, a
reinforced concrete party wall at the south property line, and 14 x 14 inch post and beam interior supports. The flat
roof is constructed of “laminated” 2 x 6 inch boards on end, with exterior trusses over the south three bays which are
visible from above. Interior finishes were described as soundproof plastered walls with fir trim, and plate glass
storefronts with brick bulkheads.

The north, or primary, elevation faces Union Street. Although the north elevation is made up of eight structural bays,
the expression of the bays on the north storefront has varied. Originally, the bay structure consisted of double-width
bays at the center and ends separated by smaller bays (ABABA), but was altered in 1963 to consist of equal-width bays
matching the smaller width (BBBBBBBB). This was accomplished by introducing apparently non-load-bearing wall piers
to the elevation to subdivide the wider bays (see 1964 photo). At the same time, original windows below the transom
were replaced with modern aluminum sash. Also at that time, the original transoms over the storefront windows
appear to have simply been covered over, rather than removed, and are therefore today intact. By 2002, the c.1963
non-load-bearing wall piers had been truncated below the transom level, so that the original transoms were again
visible on the exterior.

The transoms on the north elevation are wood sash, subdivided into narrow lights, with a single horizontal muntin
defining the upper quarter of the transom. Transoms are subdivided by wide vertical muntins into thirds at narrow bays
and fourths at wider bays.

The north facade originally featured two recessed main entrances, located within the “B” bays in the ABABA elevation
configuration. One of these entrances remains today, at the eastern “B” bay. The glazed entry door is surrounded by a
wood sash multi-pane relight and transom, and the ceiling of the recess features decorative battens and an overhead
light fixture.

Nyberg and Steinbrueck, 1975, unpaginated.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

A brick parapet wraps around the three main elevations of the building, and features a single horizontal projecting
course (which may be concrete or cast stone) approximately at the roofline. The parapet originally featured a
triangular pediment-like form over the central two bays on the north elevation, but this was removed sometime
between 1960 and 1964, as evidenced by photographs.

The west elevation, facing Broadway, is composed of five bays and two window types. The windows in the
northernmost two bays wrap the corner from Union Street, and resemble the storefront and transoms on the north
or primary facade—transoms are original, but storefront are modern aluminum sash. The southernmost three bays,
however, appear to be the original wood sash windows lighting this service/repair half of the building. These windows
are not a storefront system, but rather are composed of multiple lights, with prominent vertical muntins subdividing
the windows. The horizontal muntin separating the transom and storefront system of the northernmost two bays is
continued across in these southernmost three bays. The three windows of this section reduce in height, and the sill
steps upward, as the sidewalk grade slopes uphill to the south.

The east elevation, facing the narrow Broadway Court, has been significantly altered, although no historic photos could
be found of this facade. Currently, only the northernmost single bay is a continuation of the north elevation window
system, and retains the original transom. Two garage entries and a short ramp down to the interior floor level provide
access to the service half of the building. The remaining two bays are walled and sealed. Originally, this elevation was
composed of one storefront bay, three multipane window bays (similar to the three southernmost windows on the
west elevation), and a single garage entry with wooden Z-type doors shown in the drawings.

The south side of the building is a party wall, and not visible from the exterior.

Photographs indicate that at least by 1964, and perhaps several times in recent decades, the brick exterior walls have
been painted. Early photographs indicate that the original condition of the brick was unpainted. The current condition
suggests a skim coat under the paint, so that while the wall remains easily identifiable as a brick wall, the surface
texture of the original brick has been compromised.

C. Building Interior

The northern portion of the building along Union Street was originally one large space along the storefront windows:
an automobile showroom with mezzanine offices, and a parts department, intended for the public. Finishes indicated on
original drawings include terrazzo floors and beamed ceilings. Original drawings and a 1920 newspaper photo of the
showroom provide the only indication of the original interior. [See interior photos pp. 32-34]

Today, the building is used for storage by the owner. Terrazzo floors remain visible at the recessed entry porch on the
north elevation; interior floors today are concrete. The beamed ceiling with decorative molding remains, although
there are at least two locations where the structure has been compromised due to water damage and is being shored
up. The present owners have constructed in recent years a nonstructural steel stud privacy wall inside the showroom
area, set back from the storefront windows several feet, for security and to limit views into the building interior.

The office mezzanine remains against the south portion of what had been the sales/parts area. Alterations and an
addition to the mezzanine may date from about 1963-67 by the architecture firm Ayer & Lamping, when the building
was owned by the furniture company Prottas & Levitt. Original drawings show the mezzanine level considerably more
glazed, wainscoting at the main level, and wood balustrades—none of which is there now, if it was ever built as
designed. Presumably at that time, the mezzanine office was enlarged and extended northward toward the Union
Street wall, which had the effect of increasing the separation in the interior from the northeast portion to the
northwest portion of the space.

The southern half of the building—what had originally been the service and repair area—remains utilitarian in
character. The post and beam structure is exposed and floors are concrete. The large open area is lit by windows at
the east and west walls, and three skylights along the center of the ceiling. The garage door entries and a ramp at the
eastern elevation provide access to the space; at the west elevation, along Broadway, the interior floor level is

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

approximately two to three feet below the sidewalk level. Steps leading down to the basement are located at the
southeast corner of the room.

D. Summary of Primary Alterations

Drawings on file at the Seattle Department of Planning and Development Microfilm Library indicate that the building
was designed by Victor Voorhees and built in 1920. One structural sheet of the six-sheet architectural drawing set
available is signed by Henry W. Bittman, who was apparently the consulting structural engineer (probably for steel used
in the project). On the other five sheets, structural callouts are written out in Voorhees’ distinctive handwriting,
suggesting that Voorhees may have done some of his own structural calculations for the building. On several
architectural sheets, Voorhees includes the note “See structural plans for steel,” although the one Bittman sheet only
includes the Boiler Room floor framing plan, and elevation details—therefore additional structural drawings, if they
existed, are no longer extant.

Drawings are also on file showing non-significant alterations to the building in 1933 and 1935 by John Graham Sr., a
prominent Seattle architect.

The well-known firm of Elizabeth Ayer & Rolland Lamping appear to have designed an alteration to the balcony
mezzanine for the building showroom interior, sometime in the 1960s (drawings on file are undated and appear to be
incomplete). The alteration of the storefront windows by introducing intermediary piers also occurred during the
1960s, so it is possible but unconfirmed that Ayer & Lamping may have had something to do with that design decision.

The most recent renovations, in 1991, were by The Kirkpatrick Architects, a Seattle firm located at 1109 First Avenue.
These drawings do not, however, show the truncated window posts on the north elevation; this alteration appears to
have occurred after 1991, but at least by 2002 (as evidenced by photos).

Known, permitted alterations to the building are as follows:
[See graphic summary of alterations p. 62]

1923 Build
1935 Alter (partitions)
1943 [No description]
1947 Office partitions
1955 Erect sign ($1800)
1963 Remove interior non-bearing partitions and replace existing wood sash windows with aluminum ($5000)
1965 Construct partitions and establish occupancy as Stores ($300)
1965 Alter partition between wholesale and store ($500)
1965 Remove window and install two doors ($500)
1966 Erect retractable awning
1978 To construct a new balcony addition and existing store and warehouse building and occupy as mezzanine floor
office computer room per plan.
1978 To install window wall to portion of existing balcony, per plans
1991 Change use of warehouse, showroom to auto retail sales and vehicle repair minor, per plans

Observed or apparent alterations to the building, based on current inspection of the building, original drawings, and
historical photographs, include the following:

• Loss of the triangular shaped parapet at north elevation
• Removal of the original windows and storefront configuration below the transom level at north elevation, and
parts of east and west elevations
• Removal of an original entry at north elevation
• Exterior brick painted, with skim coat
• Alterations and addition to office mezzanine at interior

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


A. Early site development

The subject site is located at the south end of the Capitol Hill neighborhood, at the point where the adjacent First Hill
and Squire Park neighborhoods meet in a saddle between low hills. Both Capitol Hill and First Hill are two of the oldest
neighborhoods in the city (Seattle’s founders had settled on Elliott Bay only in 1852, and incorporated in 1869). By
about 1880-1900, both were established as fashionable neighborhoods for the growing elite in the expanding city, with
numerous mansions crowning their slopes. Both neighborhoods were convenient to downtown, enjoyed water views
and fresh air, and were some of the earliest areas served by streetcar lines. A map of 1896 street railways shows two
lines serving First Hill via Yesler Way and James Street, while several lines were serving Capitol Hill via Pike, Union,
Howell, Stewart, and other streets. On the interior of the hills and on lower slopes, such as around the subject
property, more modest middle-class homes and small apartment buildings were built, with scattered commercial
buildings, creating a relatively dense neighborhood by the early 1900s. [See historic context maps pp. 36-38]

Between these neighborhoods, a block south of the subject property, Madison Street sliced at a southwest to
northeast angle from downtown over the hills to Lake Washington. The street had been extended and improved in
1864-65 at the personal expense of Judge John J. McGilvra (1827-1903), who owned 420 acres and a residence at what
is now the Madison Park neighborhood. He developed a shoreline park for public use, and built in 1889-1891 a cable
car along Madison Street to facilitate easier access for the public.

This was one of the earliest streetcar lines in the city,
and helped develop Madison Street into a major thoroughfare in later years.

The 1893 Sanborn fire insurance map shows one wood frame house and a smaller outbuilding located at the
northernmost corner of the subject site. At that time, the site consisted of two parcels at the north end of a long,
narrow block. The surrounding street names were Broadway, Cooper Street (later renamed E. Union), and Williamson
Street (later renamed Broadway Court), with Madison Street defining the south end of the block. The area was lightly
developed, characterized by single-family frame houses developed singly or in groups, primarily along Madison Street.
Improved and unimproved streets and rights of way in the area at that time lacked a clear organization, apparently due
to the intersection of several major plats.

The 1904-05 Sanborn map shows considerably more development within about a decade. By this time, the subject site
has been redivided into three parcels, with those facing Broadway occupied by single family residences or boarding
houses (as evidenced by classified advertisements in the Seattle Times between 1900 and 1908). Permit records
indicate that the two houses on the subject site were constructed in 1901 and 1902, were two stories with basement,
frame construction, and both measured approximately 22 feet by 36 feet.

Even by 1905, development in the immediate area appears to have attracted a more refined class of residences and
institutions on the west side of Broadway, or on either side of Madison Street, rather than the blocks due east of the
subject site, which bottomed out into a low depression. Nearby significant properties at that time included: [See
historic context photos pp. 44-50]
• Prominent First Hill mansions a few blocks away, including the c. 1880s Burke family home located at the
corner of Madison and Boylston (demolished).
• St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, forerunner of St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral (later to be located at 1245 10

Avenue E.), was located at Seneca and Harvard, having been constructed in 1897 (demolished).

• The Jesuit building housing the Parish and School of the Immaculate Conception (John Parkinson, 1894), now
the Garrand Building at Seattle University, remains extant on the south side of Madison at Broadway. This
imposing four-story building was constructed of brick and stone, and was the start of what was to become
today’s Seattle University.

“Seattle Neighborhoods: Madison Park – Thumbnail History,” Essay #2808, by Junius Rochester,
November 16, 2000; Veka, pp.14-19. Horse-drawn streetcars had been introduced in Seattle in 1884, cable cars in
1887, and electric streetcars in 1889. By 1892, Seattle had 48 miles of streetcar lines and 22 miles of cable car lines.
“The history of St. Mark’s” St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral, Seattle, at
“Jesuits purchase future Seattle University campus on November 6, 1890,” Essay 3264, by staff, May
9, 2001.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

• The Broadway Building, a mixed-use building on the north side of Madison at Broadway, was constructed in
1905 (demolished).

Within a few years, other significant buildings would be constructed nearby, including:
• Fire House No. 25, located at Harvard and Union (Somervell & Cote, 1909) was Seattle’s first brick fire house,
and remains in place today as condominiums.
• The Scottish Rite Cathedral, on the triangular parcel of land at Broadway and Harvard Avenue, would be
constructed shortly after 1912. The building was demolished at some point after 1975.
• First Baptist Church, across Harvard Avenue from St. Marks Church and the Scottish Rite Cathedral, would
be constructed in 1910 and completed in 1912. The building remains intact today.
• Minor Hospital at Harvard and Spring, built in 1910. The building remains today, having been purchased in
1929 by First Baptist Church, which is located on the same block.

On the subject site’s block, the southern half in the early 1900s was dominated by the Academy of the Holy Name, a
girl’s school operated by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary. The substantial, three-story brick building
appears to have been constructed around 1900 and may have been related to the Jesuit college across Madison Street
from it, or more likely was a branch of the downtown Academy of Holy Names, was located at Jackson and 7
In the early 1900s, the school offered “Primary, Intermediate, Grammar Grades, and four years of Academic Work,
French, Latin, German, and Needlework taught without extra charge. The Music and Business Courses are special
departments, the latter including Stenography, Typewriting, Bookkeeping, and Methods of Rapid Calculation.”
In later
years, the building was known as St. Josephs or St. Rose’s Academy; after that, it was the home of the Ancient Order
of Hibernians Club; then a boys home. By 1951, the building is shown on Sanborn maps as The Marne Hotel. The
building was demolished at some point in later decades.

In contrast to these examples of relatively wealthy development on the higher ground to the west and south of the
site, the area immediately east and north of the subject site in the early decades of the 1900s attracted smaller home
and duplexes, and commercial uses such as liveries and wagon works. Examples of these more utilitarian buildings
• The large Broadway Livery and Sale Stables, across Union Street from the subject site, at 10
Avenue, was
constructed around 1900, and had expanded by 1912. Remnants of the buildings may have remained until
demolished in recent years.
• A Seattle Electric Car Barn was constructed in the early 1900s on the south side of Madison at 10
Avenue, as
one of the sources of power for the streetcars along Madison. The building was remodeled in the mid-20

century but remains today as the Fine Arts Building on the Seattle University campus.
• Bekins Moving & Storage began in Seattle at a downtown location but built a six story concrete warehouse,
frame livery and other structures at 12
and Madison to house horses and wagons. After a third warehouse
was built there in 1918, the company had 100,000 square feet of storage.

Pike and Pine Streets between downtown and the summit of Capitol Hill were regraded in the early 1900s to provide
access to the rapidly growing neighborhood. Similarly, the streets in the 12
Avenue area just east of the subject site
were regraded around 1910, although in an attempt to improve development in the area.
A Seattle Times news piece
in 1908 described the subject block and few blocks east of it, citing the need for improving the quality of development

Advertisement, The Catholic Progress newspaper, October 14, 1904, p.5. Confusingly, another school, called
Academy of Holy Names, was located at Jackson and 7
Avenue at the same time, and was “a Catholic Institution of
Higher Education for Young Women.” Advertisements for both appear next to each other in the newspaper cited. It
was that school which moved in 1908 to an ornate new building on 21
Avenue on Capitol Hill, and is today known as
Holy Names Academy.
“The founding of Bekins Moving and Storage Company—the 1900s,” Bekins company website,
Ketcherside, Rob, “The tunnel from Capitol Hill to downtown that never happened,” CHS Re:Take, January 29, 2012.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

in that immediate area (at that time, the portion of Union Street where the subject site is located, between Broadway
and 11
Avenue, was relatively narrow):

“Some businesses has already developed along Pine, Pike and Madison from Broadway east, but it is
rather of a cheap sort and not such as adds greatly to property values. Taken as a whole, the Twelfth
Avenue district looms large in possible development, but shows small in actual improvement.
Portions of it have even taken a bad start backward, as for instance around the narrow part of East
Union Street, and show a tendency to run to shacks, stables and so forth to the jeopardy of property

Because the area was a saddle or low depression between hills, the regrade work in the vicinity consisted primarily of
fill rather than cuts. Particularly in the area around 11
Avenue between E. Pike and E. Union Streets, a block east of
the subject site, the interior of lots were left considerably below the grade of the adjoining streets. The low rise a few
blocks east of the subject site was sometimes referred to as “Second Hill.”

Prior to or as part of this regrading, the boundaries of the site were altered. The parcels at the subject location had
originally measured 60 feet by approximately 151 feet. In the early 1900s, a strip of the northernmost parcel measuring
between 18 and 22 feet in depth along Union Street was acquired by the City of Seattle for right of way widening.
However, the right of way to the east—today known as Broadway Court—was narrowed, so that the width of all of
the parcels abutting it were enlarged by 7 feet (from the original 151 feet to about 158 feet).

By the time of the construction of the subject building in 1920, the character of the neighborhood had been significantly
affected by the growing popularity of the automobile, and the area came to be known as “Auto Row.”

B. The development of the Pike-Pine “Auto Row” in Seattle

Pike Street, because of its grade, was one of the first streets as one departed the downtown area that could be easily
improved to reach Capitol Hill. Gently-sloped Pine was also improved as a roadway and more streetcar lines, parallel
to Pike, connected up to Broadway from downtown by 1891 and upgraded in 1901. Nearly flat Broadway was also an
early paved street, and had one of the few north-south streetcar lines that did not go through downtown, but rather
connecting Capitol Hill and First Hill.

Where streetcar lines went, automobiles soon followed. The first sold in 1905, but to a city still used to streetcars,
horse transportation, or walking, the new automobiles were essentially toys for the wealthy. Because Pike and Pine
were the easiest connection to Broadway, and Broadway connected the wealthy First Hill and Capitol Hill enclaves, the
Pike-Pine-Broadway area began to develop into an early “Auto Row,” characterized by numerous dealerships, auto
repair shops, parts suppliers, paint shops, parking garages, used car dealers, and the like.
[See photos p. 51]

Automobile dealerships would have been the most prominent buildings in the Auto Row area, usually located at the
most visible locations and in ornate, architect-designed buildings. The early examples of these buildings were generally
fire-resistive construction of concrete or brick, two to four stories tall, with large showroom or garage spaces on the
first floor, and service areas or parking or offices on upper floors. All floors were connected by ramps or large
automobile-sized elevators. At the beginning of the 20
century in Seattle, automobiles were purchased from local
distributors after selecting a model from an auto show, a showroom, or from literature. The vehicle would be
delivered months later. Unlike today, there were a wide range of manufacturers competing for market share—not
only Ford and Chrysler, but now-departed brands like Paige, Federal, Menominee, Chalmers, Saxon, Bauch-Lang
Electric, Seldon, Mitchell, Hupmobile, Pierce-Arrow, Case, REO, Willys-Overland, Peerless, Packard, Studebaker, and

“Regraders to fill a valley—explanation of the Twelfth Avenue improvement plan and some of the benefits to be
gained thereby,” Seattle Times, June 28, 1908, p.65.
Today also referred to as the “Pike-Pine Corridor.”
Sheridan, p.27; BOLA, p.5.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Seattle’s population in this period was growing exponentially, and automobile purchases grew with it, due to increased
familiarity with the new technology, and increasingly moderate prices. From 1890 to 1900 the Seattle population had
nearly doubled over the decade, to 80,761. City boundaries expanded through several 1907 annexations, such that by
1910 the population had nearly tripled to 237,194, and to approximately 327,000 in 1920.

The growth of vehicle ownership resulted in large numbers of secondary businesses springing up to provide support
and services. Automobile-related listings in the Seattle Polk’s Directory had grown substantially; for example, by 1915,
there were 55 businesses listed under “Automobile Manufacturers and Dealers,” but nearly twice as many—102—
listed under “Automobile Repairs and Supplies.” These services included various headings such as “Automobile
Accessories,” “Automobile Fenders, Lamps, and Radiators,” “Automobile Gasoline,” and so forth. Some automobile
listings appear to be addressing a public still used to horses and carriages—for example, the 1915 directory has
subheadings such as “Automobile Tops and Trimmings,” “Automobile Liveries (See Garages),” and even “Automobile

Unlike the automobile dealerships, auto services were often likely to be located in more utilitarian structures, and
often on the side streets of the Auto Row area. Garages and some service buildings were built of masonry or concrete
fire-resistive construction like the auto dealerships, except less ornate. Between these masonry structures were also
found simple wood-frame shop or service buildings, usually only one story.

Beginning around the 1920s, other “auto rows” began to appear over the decades in other parts of Seattle, and auto-
related service businesses began to be not necessarily associated with the Pike-Pine-Broadway area. In the Depression
years of the 1930s, many auto businesses closed and some dealerships moved to selling used cars. In the postwar years
of the late 1940s, dealerships moved to expansive outdoor lots and new buildings as they followed suburban
development. In the Pike-Pine area during the past several decades, many former automotive-related concrete,
masonry, and heavy-timber structures were adapted to residential, retail, entertainment, and institutional uses.

Today, the Pike-Pine Corridor has several former auto dealership buildings and automobile service buildings that have
been cited in city surveys as having a high degree of integrity. Automobile-related buildings cited in the Sound Transit
environmental impact statement include the Seattle Automobile Company (1000 E. Pike) and the Lieback Garage (1101
E. Pike), which concluded that they may be eligible for National Register or city landmark status. The Historic Property
Survey Report for Seattle’s Neighborhood Commercial Districts cites the following buildings as notable:

• Utrecht Art Supplies, a former Packard dealership (1120 Pike)
• AEI Music, a former Packard dealership (1600 Broadway)
• The former Tyson Automobile Company (903 E. Pine)
• The former Graham Motor Cars (915 E. Pike)
• The former Colyear Auto Sales, later occupied by REI (1021 E. Pine)

C. Building owners and occupants

Owners Occupants
1920 Edward Francis Sweeney 1920-23 Great Western Motors (Paige showroom)
1933 James J. Brennan 1923-29 General Motors Truck Company
1959 Shipman Surgical Company 1925-29 Yellow Taxicab, Truck & Coach (General Motors)
1963 Prottas & Levitt Furniture Company 1930-33 Empire Motors
1967 University Way Properties 1933-35 Unknown (vacant?)
1977 University Way Associates 1935-59 Piston Service Inc.
1988 James J. Keating 1960-63 Vacant
1991 K&B Properties 1964 Prottas & Levitt Furniture Company
2003 Broadway Development LLC 1965 General Leasing Furniture
2008 The Polyclinic 1965 Paris American Labs / Paris American Supply
1999 Complete Automotive
Today Unoccupied/Used for storage

Ochsner, Shaping Seattle Architecture, pp. xviii-xxxii.
Sheridan, p.27.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

First owners and tenants: Edward Francis Sweeney and the Great Western Motors Company
The subject building was constructed in 1920 as an automotive showroom and service facility for the Great Western
Motors Company. The owner of the property and developer of the building at that time was Edward F. Sweeney. [See
historic photos pp. 39-41]

Sweeney was born May 10, 1860 in San Francisco and educated at St. Mary’s College there. He moved to Seattle in
1883 and founded Sweeney & Rule brewery in Georgetown with a partner, but became the sole owner a few months
later. In 1889, he reorganized and incorporated the firm as the Claussen-Sweeney Brewing Company with H. J.
Claussen, and himself as president. By 1889, the brewery was producing a million gallons a year. In 1893, the Claussen-
Sweeney brewery merged with the Hemrich family’s Bay View Brewery, and the Albert Braun Brewery, forming the
Seattle Brewing and Malting Company. This would evolve a few years later into one of the largest breweries in the
Sweeney initially served as an officer of the firm, but sold his interests in the brewery in 1906. He then
expanded into finance, becoming a trustee of the National Bank of Commerce of Seattle, vice president of the
Chamber of Commerce, as well as a developer of real estate projects. He built and operated the Savoy Hotel on
Second Avenue in 1906, until selling it in 1911.

Great Western Motors was originally founded as the Paige Motor Sales Company of Washington in 1916 to be the
distributor for the Paige brand of automobiles in the Northwest. Within a few years they had reorganized under the
name Great Western Motors. Paige automobiles were mid-range in price and luxury, and were frequently advertised
under the tagline “The Most Beautiful Car in America.” George M. Price was President of Great Western, Fred W. Hill
was Vice President, and V. C. Foree was secretary/treasurer. Little additional information of significance could be found
about them.

Great Western Motors’ first showroom was located at 903 E. Pike Street, today known as the Tyson Building, which
had been constructed in 1912 at the southeast corner of Broadway and Pike (at that time, the company was still the
Paige Motor Sales Company of Washington). The showroom was a small space with twenty feet of street frontage,
because the building was occupied by other tenants, including other automobile companies.

The company outgrew this space quickly and moved in 1917 into a new building specifically built for them by E. F.
Sweeney at the southwest corner of Boylston Avenue and E. Pine Street, and leased to them as tenants. The architect
was Victor Voorhees. The entrance was from Boylston and the driveway into the building was located on Pine. This
building was three stories and featured a showroom at the ground floor, the parts department on the second floor,
with shop and service on the third floors, with an automobile elevator connecting the levels. Newspaper accounts
describe the building having terrazzo floors, a mezzanine housing the accounting and general offices, and windows
opening off the balcony overlooking the showroom floor. Period renderings and early photos show a projecting
cornice at the roofline and letters forming the name “Paige” within a shaped parapet; however, the projecting cornice
was later removed and a row of decorative diamond-shaped tiles were placed at the roofline below the parapet. Today,
the building remains at that location but has been altered, and is occupied by a nightclub and bar.

By 1919 increasing sales of Paige cars pushed the company to find an even larger space to show and service their
vehicles, resulting in the company’s move into the subject building in 1920, which Sweeney had built specifically for
them, and again served as their landlord, and again designed by Victor Voorhees.

Newspaper accounts with perhaps some boosterish hyperbole describe this, the subject building of this report, as “one
of the largest automobile showrooms in Seattle” at that time.
The design was specifically intended to move away from
multi-level automobile sales and service buildings: “The floor space of the service department will be as large as the
total floor space of the present building occupied by the firm... the location of the shops and service department on

Bagley, p.626.
Bagley, p.485. The Savoy Hotel was originally constructed as an eight-story building, but four floors were added in
1907. The site is now occupied by the Washington Mutual Tower, which was constructed 1986-88.
“Three-Story Building to be Erected as new Home of Paige Firm”, The Seattle Times, June 17, 1917, p.7; and “Paige
in Handsome New Home”, The Seattle Times Automobiles Section, November 4, 1917, p.1-2
“Great Western Motors Planning New Building,” The Seattle Times, January 11, 1920.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

the ground floor makes them more accessible, a fact that will be greatly appreciated by Paige users.”
The service
department was intended to be exceptionally large in order to conveniently take care of customers after their new car
purchase. A 1920 newspaper photo shows the showroom floor of the subject building decorated for the grand
opening, with potted plants, benches, and flowers among the parked Paige model automobiles.

In 1922, Great Western began to sell Jewett automobiles, a lower-priced brand developed by Paige.
A news article in
July of that year noted that Great Western Motors recently “added [a] used car department... The addition of the
popular Jewett Six line to their line necessitated more room and the building on Tenth Avenue, just around the corner
from the Great Western Motors, was rented for the used car department. The building is the one formerly occupied
by Swartz & Bridgeman [a service garage].” The aforementioned building on Tenth Avenue could not be identified, but
according to Polk’s Directories, a Swartz & Bridgeman garage was located at “10
Ave & E. Seneca” from 1920 through
1922, a half a block south of the subject site.

Sweeney died unexpectedly on January 31, 1923, while visiting his wife’s family in Brooklyn, New York, and the news
was announced in The Seattle Times the next day.
On March 1, 1923, articles of incorporation were filed by J. G.
Tennant, to form J. G. Tennant, Inc., and on March 4, it was announced that Tennant had purchased Paige and Jewett
franchise in Seattle. Great Western Motors was apparently bought out, and the firm disappears, eventually stricken
from the Washington State corporations log in 1925. Because the company seemed to fail the same time that Sweeney
died, it seems possible that he was a significant investor in the firm, although there is no indication that he was an
officer of the company.
It is unclear whether the building continued to be used in the months following.

The new Tennant dealership did not occupy the subject building, but moved immediately into an existing c.1916
building at the northwest corner of 12
Avenue and E. Pike Street, remodeled to accommodate the new company. The
shop was open and accepting customers by March 11. J. G. Tennant had first sold Mercedes and Northern
automobiles in Chicago in 1904, then the Peerless line in 1906. He came to Seattle in 1911 as an automobile dealer for
the same. In 1912 he moved back to Chicago, where he was the National and Abbot-Detroit dealer for ten years. He
returned to Seattle in 1923, just before purchasing the Paige and Jewett dealership. Strangely, just eight months later in
November 1923, Tennant announced that he had cancelled his contract with Paige, and would remain in Seattle but
engage in a new business unrelated to the automobile industry. By 1926, Tennant and his wife had moved to San

Later owners and tenants
In September 1923, the General Motors Truck Company announced that the subject building would house a new
factory branch location to provide retail sales and service in Seattle, and to serve as the district office for Washington,
Alaska, Montana, and Idaho.
Their sales office had previously been on E. Pike at the Eldridge Buick Company. The
building’s interior was repainted and redecorated, and the portion devoted to parts and service was enlarged and
reconfigured. R. A. Sweet was the district sales manager at the time the company moved into the space. The
company’s product line included Yellow Taxicabs, Trucks, and Coaches, a subsidiary of General Motors. [See historic
photos pp. 42-44]

In October 1929, the Seattle offices of the General Motors Truck Company left the subject building and moved to a
new custom-built one-story building at Maynard Avenue and Charles Street, consolidating their offices in Seattle and
Spokane. That structure was built for them by Frye Investment Company.

“Great Western Motors Planning New Building,” The Seattle Times, January 11, 1920.
“It has set a new standard...” advertisement, The Seattle Times, September 3, 1922.
“Great Western Motors used car department,” The Seattle Times, July 16, 1922, p.27.
“Edward F. Sweeney of Seattle dies in East,” The Seattle Times, February 1, 1923.
In fact, he is specifically not listed in news accounts. See “Great Western Motors Planning New Building,” The Seattle
Times, January 11, 1920.
All from The Seattle Times: “Articles of incorporation,” March 2, 1923, p.22; “Tennant gets agencies,” March 4, 1923,
p.19; “New agency opened—Paige and Jewett move to 12
and Pike,” March 11, 1923, p.17; “Building that houses Paige
and Jewett dealer” illustration, March 18, 1923, p.20; and “Tennant closing out,” November 11, 1923, p.5.
“General Motors Truck Company Opens Seattle Branch”, The Seattle Daily Times, September 30, 1923, p.7.
“General Motors Truck Building Being Erected,” The Seattle Times, August 4, 1929, p.3.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

In the early 1930s, the subject building was occupied by Empire Motors, a Dodge Brothers sales and service dealership
founded by brothers A. B. and A. H. McConnell. Both had been in the automobile business since 1915. Little additional
information could be found regarding them. By 1933, the firm had moved to another address, on Pike Street.

In 1935, James J. Brennen purchased the subject property from the heirs of E. F. Sweeney to be used by his company,
Piston Service Inc.

James “Jim” Brennen was born in Alexandria, Scotland where he worked as an apprentice to the Argyle Motor Works,
learning to be a machinist. He later immigrated to the United States and settled in Seattle. There he opened a small
shop named the Motor Parts Machine Company, focusing on re-boring cylinders, cutting gears, regrinding crankshafts,
and other automotive needs. Brennen also began stocking a few replacement parts for sale to meet the growing
demand. As the business grew, it transformed into Piston Service, Inc., the first auto parts store on the Pacific Coast,
and one of the first in the United States. He opened branch stores in Tacoma, Everett, Bellingham, Aberdeen, Yakima
and Wenatchee, with eleven branches in all. When he moved the headquarters to this building from its previous
location at 801 East Pike Street, he arranged the machine shop to take advantage of the large plate glass display
windows so that passersby could watch the machinery in action. This location would also serve as the wholesale parts
warehouse for the branch stores.
Polk’s Seattle Directories show that Piston Service Inc. would continue operations
until 1959, and then close for reasons not discovered.

In 1959, the B. W. Shipman Surgical Company purchased the building from James Brennen and relocated from 1205 E.
Pike Street, using it as a surgical supply display room and stock warehouse, perhaps due to the growing presence of
hospitals on First Hill nearby. The company also had branches in Tacoma, and agencies in Bellingham and Longview.
Shipman Surgical Company was sold to Will Ross Inc. in 1960, and they moved their headquarters to a new building at
2001 22nd Avenue South in 1961.

The building was vacant until sold to Prottas & Levitt Furniture Company in 1963. Polk’s Seattle City Directories show
it was briefly used as a furniture warehouse for the company’s sales showrooms. The company had been in business
since 1902 when it was founded by brothers Sam, Nathan and A. L. Levitt along with brother-in-law Sam Prottas. The
first store was located at Second Avenue and Bell Street, then moved to Second and Pine. In 1960 they added a Sixth
Avenue store, before closing the Second and Pine store in 1964. Prottas & Levitt was purchased and absorbed into
Doces Sixth Avenue, another furniture store, in 1966.
During this period, the address of the subject building changed
from 905 E. Union Street to 1158 Broadway.

Prior to Prottas & Levitt’s purchase by Doces in 1966, the company began leasing space in the subject building to other
tenants. Advertisements listed General Leasing Furniture’s offices in the building during 1965.
Later that same year,
Paris Beauty Supply, a major wholesale supplier of products for beauty salons in the Greater Seattle area, took over the
entire building. They had been operating across the street at 1159 Broadway, and expanded their operations into this
building as well.
Paris Beauty Supply would occupy the property for approximately 35 years until they ceased
operations in 1998 or 1999.

The subject building’s ownership changed several times while Paris Beauty Supply was a tenant. Prottas & Levitt sold to
University Way Properties in 1967, who transferred it to University Way Associates in 1977. It was sold in 1988 to
James J. Keating and again in 1991 to K&B Properties. While under K&B Properties’ ownership, Paris Beauty Supply
closed and in 1999 automobiles returned to the building when it was used as a used car showroom and service facility
for Complete Automotive. They downsized to a smaller location on Dexter Avenue during the economic downturn in

“Local Piston Service Company to Hold Open house”, The Seattle Times, February 16, 1938, p.2.
In later years, James Brennen lived on a ranch in Sequim before briefly moving back to Scotland, but then returned to
the United States. He and his wife settled in Poulsbo, where they bought a 158 acre farm and began building a 15-
room Georgian style home. However, before the new home could be finished, Brennen died in a traffic accident in
1963. His wife completed the house, and continued working the property as a breeding farm. See “Cattle Breeder is
Quite a Scottish ‘Lass’”, The Seattle Times, September 24, 1967, p.91.
“Surgical Supply Firm in New Building”, The Seattle Times, September 10, 1961, p.30.
“Doces Brothers Purchase Two Furniture Stores”, The Seattle Times, November 6, 1966, p. 88.
Advertisement, The Seattle Times, June 20, 1965, p.12, middle of right column.
“Beauty-Supply Wholesale Firm Leases Space,” The Seattle Times, October 31, 1965, p.39.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

2010, and the building has been vacant since.
In 2008 it was sold to its current owner, The Polyclinic, who uses the
building for light office storage.

D. Paige automobiles

Fredrick Osgood Paige was born in 1863 and moved as a young child with his family to Detroit. He worked in the
insurance business, and in 1904 helped organize the Reliance Motor Car Company. The company started out building
cars but soon switched to trucks before General Motors bought the company, and Paige was out of the business. He
began designing his own car, and in 1909 partnered with Harry M. Jewett to raise money from other Detroit
businessmen in order to launch the Paige-Detroit Motor Car Company. Together they built the first Paige-Detroit in
1910, an $800 lightweight two-seater roadster named Challenger.
[See historic photos p. 41]

After one year in business and selling 800 cars, Jewett became concerned about the company’s prospects, and it was at
this time that Fredrick Paige left the business. Paige later established the Paige & Jones Chemical Company specializing
in water softening treatment, before retiring in 1930 to Los Angeles. There he died in 1935 at age 71. Jewett
continued on with the company as its new president. In 1912 the company began to refer to their cars strictly as
“Paiges,” dropping Detroit from the name, and gave the cars stylish names such as the Beverly, Pinehurst, and La

The Paige Motor Car Company began offering more luxurious automobile interiors and options, while maintaining
moderate pricing, even offering larger touring cars and town cars meant to be chauffer-driven. In 1918 General
Motors Company approached Jewett in an attempt to purchase the company, but their offer was rebuffed. Sales
continued to grow through the end of the decade, but the entire industry slowed down in 1921 due to a post-war
depression—only a year after the subject building of this report was constructed. By this time Paiges had evolved into
larger, more substantial cars with price tags to match, leading the company to launch a lower-priced six-cylinder line of
cars that seated five. These were named “Jewett,” after the company’s president. These cars proved very successful,
selling over twenty thousand autos in the first year compared to just over nine thousand Paige models.

Better times returned to the nation and the company saw its sales steadily climb through the mid-1920s, though the
firm’s profits failed to keep pace with sales. 1926 saw the end of the Jewett models, which were re-badged as Paiges
just before another big change arrived the following year: Jewett agreed to sell his portion of the company to the
Graham Brothers and left the automotive industry in 1927. He went on to serve as president of Colonial Laundry
Company of Detroit and died in 1933 at age sixty-two.

Joseph, Robert, and Ray Graham had purchased Paige for $4 million and a pledge to spend $4 million more on
The Graham brothers had previously owned a glass bottle company, which they sold to Owens
Bottle Company, then moved into the automotive industry in 1921 by building truck bodies on passenger car chassis
for Dodge. The partnership with was short lived, and they sold their portion of the company to Dodge in 1926. Their
desire to continue in the automotive industry let to the acquisition of Paige. For a short time they continued building
cars under the Paige name, but within months had designed a new model line to be called Graham-Paige cars, priced
from $860-$2,485. Production climbed from 21,881 in 1927 to 73,195 in 1928, a sales record for a new make in its
first year. However, 1928 was to be their peak year financially as the oncoming Great Depression saw sales plunge to
33,560 in 1930, 20,428 in 1931, and only 12,967 in 1932. In the summer of 1932, Ray Graham committed suicide by
drowning while driving with his brother Robert to a mental institution, possibly due to business pressures during the

In 1934, Graham-Paige introduced the first supercharged engine available in a moderately priced production car.
Previously only cars such as Duesenberg, Stutz, or Franklin had been associated with such engines. In 1936 the
Graham brothers restyled the line to match the more fluid styling of its competitors and began marketing their
supercharged 6-cylinders as a more fuel efficient but equally powerful competitor to other manufacturer’s 8-cylinders.
Still losing money however, the company tried manufacturing farm tractors in an attempt to utilize their manufacturing

Phone interview with Brian Burns of Complete Automotive, by Chris Jones of NK Architects, May 13, 2013.
Keller, Michael E., The Graham Legacy: Graham-Paige to 1932, New York: 1998, pp.24-27.
Godshall, J. Il, “The Graham Brothers and Their Car.” Automobile Quarterly, Volume 18, No. 1.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

capacity but met with limited success. During the early 40s Graham-Paige went from making cars to armaments for the
war, building an amphibious tractor, aircraft engines, PT boat engines, and torpedoes.

In 1944, Joe Graham sold 530,000 shares of the company to Joseph W. Frazer of the Kaiser-Frazer Corporation, who
assumed control of Graham-Paige as a result. With the war over, Frazer announced the company would return to the
automobile business, but the new car would carry the Frazer name. Sales were good, but retooling and production
costs were prohibitive, so in 1947 the Graham-Paige company shareholders sold off the company’s remaining
automotive assets to Kaiser-Frazer. The Graham-Paige Motor Corporation continued on with its tractor
manufacturing business until 1949, then divested itself of the word “Motor” in its name and became primarily a real
estate holding company in New York City. In 1962 they changed the company name to that of its most famous
holding, Madison Square Garden, marking the end of the name Paige as a brand.

E. The architect, Victor W. Voorhees

The designer of the subject building was Victor Wilbur Voorhees Jr., a well-known and prolific architect and engineer in
Seattle from 1904 to 1958. Though he is most known for his influence of the “Seattle Box” homes and his publication
of Western Home Builder early in his career, he also produced many commercial buildings throughout Seattle. [See
photos of Voorhees’ work pp. 52-59]

Information on Voorhees’ background is limited.
Voorhees was born in 1876 in Cambria, Wisconsin, to Victor
Voorhees Sr. and Violetta Irons. He primarily grew up In Minneapolis, having moved there with his family at the age of
5 in 1881. As a young adult, he studied law at the recently established Minneapolis Academy and worked in general

In 1904, Voorhees moved from Minneapolis to Seattle and worked in the building department of the Chicago,
Milwaukee and St. Paul Railway Line for roughly a year. By the end of 1904, he quit his job and established himself as an
architect in Ballard.
His first partnership, Fisher & Voorhees, lasted less than a year, and by 1905 Voorhees was
operating out if the Eitel Building in downtown Seattle, under the partnership of Voorhees & Palmer.
partnership also dissolved quickly, and beginning in 1906, Voorhees was operating on his own, though still retaining his
office in the Eitel Building.

For the majority of his career, from 1906 to 1944, Voorhees was the principal of his own firm, Victor W. Voorhees,
Architect, and designed a variety of buildings throughout Seattle, including garages and auto show rooms, laundry
buildings, retail buildings, factories, apartment buildings and single family homes.

A comprehensive list of Voorhees’ diverse works has apparently not been compiled. The most extensive discovered
for this report found over one hundred buildings attributed to Voorhees in period newspapers, primarily the Seattle
Daily Bulletin and later the Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce.
That list, however, is not exhaustive, as the subject
building of this report is not included.

Voorhees’ early career was marked primarily with single family homes. It was during this time that he published
Western Home Builder, a plan book of 120 homes from which prospective home owners could order blueprints and
specifications. The book was in its sixth edition by 1911; uncounted numbers of homes in the early neighborhoods of
Seattle were built through Voorhees’ plans in this way.
By 1907, he had started designing small apartment buildings as

Biographical information primarily derived from an unpublished biography by Don Glickstein, available at the Seattle
Central Library, Seattle Collection.
Glickstein, Don, “Victor Voorhees and the prospering of Seattle,” unpublished biography, 2001, p. 2.
Glickstein, p. 2.
“Voorhees, Victor”, Pacific Coast Architecture Database, retrieved April 30, 2013.
“Voorhees, Victor”, Pacific Coast Architecture Database, retrieved April 30, 2013.
An unpublished list of Victor Voorhees work, compiled by Seattle historian Kathryn Krafft in 2001, is available at the
Seattle Central Library, Seattle Collection. Krafft’s list was used in Glickstein’s biography of Voorhees.
Glickstein, pp.3-4.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Though the majority of his early work focused on single family homes, he designed other kinds of buildings as well. In
1906 he designed the First Danish-Swedish Methodist Episcopal Church at the corner of Stewart Street and Boren
In 1907 Voorhees designed the Welsh Presbyterian Church at the corner of 10
Ave E. and E. John Street.

Both churches have since been demolished.

In 1908 Voorhees designed the Washington Hall of Danish Brotherhood, located at 153 14
Avenue. It was originally
built for the Danish Brotherhood in America as a settlement house, but has housed many different cultural groups over
its existence. It was designated a Seattle Historic Landmark in July 2010.

Voorhees also designed the Old Georgetown City Hall, located at 6202 13
Avenue South, although the building as
originally designed lacked the clock tower that exists today.
Shortly after construction finished, Georgetown was
annexed to Seattle, and the new City Hall ceased to be used as such.
The building is a designated Seattle landmark,
and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.

While Voorhees’ career continued to gain momentum with apartment buildings and single family residences, he began
pick up contracts for retail spaces and garages. As the “Auto Row” area of Capitol Hill began to bustle with new
development, Voorhees was contracted for several of these new garages. For each year between 1912 through 1917,
Voorhees appears to have designed approximately twelve residential or commercial projects per year, of which several
were automobile-related structures, and the majority of those were located in the Pike-Pine “Auto Row” area.

One of Voorhees’ earliest automobile-related building designs dates from 1912. Two newspaper articles specified that
he had been commissioned to design a two-story concrete and brick garage for C. C. Roe, at 1424 Broadway, just
south of Pike Street.
The 60 x 128 foot structure was described as mill construction, with a foundation designed to
permit additional stories. A truss roof provided a clear floor area on the second floor, which was to be used as a store
and salesroom. The building was valued at $28,000 and construction began in April of that year. At the same time,
construction was already underway in the adjacent parcel at the corner of Pike Street and Broadway for a three-story
steel, concrete, and brick building designed by Charles Haynes. This structure was designed for the Lozier Company,
but is today known as the Tyson Building, at 905 E. Pike Street. One of its shop fronts in 1916 was the first location of
the Great Western Motors Company, the original occupant of the subject building of this report.

Also in 1912, Voorhees began to design another garage building for the northwest corner of 12
Avenue and E. Union
Street for L. S. Roe, today addressed as 1401 12
Avenue. The structure was described as one story with basement,
measuring 121 feet square overall, concrete and mill construction, and estimated to cost approximately $22,000.
completed, the “great basement” of this building was intended to serve as the commercial garage, and the ground floor
frontage to be storefronts. The foundation was designed to eventually support three stories, although this was never
carried out. The building was completed in 1913, and is today still in use, greatly altered, as a Ferrari automobile

“This Will Be A Big Realty Month,” The Seattle Times, February 18, 1906, p. 38.
Photo Caption, The Seattle Times, May 26, 1907, p. 44.
“Washington Hall of Danish Brotherhood Building, Central District, Seattle, WA”, Pacific Coast Architecture
Database, retrieved April 30, 2013. Washington Hall played an important role in Seattle’s African-American community
history when many stage venues were still segregated.
“Georgetown Soon to Have New Municipal Building,” The Seattle Times, January 9, 1909, p. 5.
Glickstein, p. 4.
“Old Georgetown City Hall,” National Register of Historic Places Form, National Park Service, US Department of
the Interior, prepared April 14, 1983.
“Another garage for Broadway planned,” The Seattle Times, April 10, 1912. See also “Among the Architects,”
Seattle Post Intelligencer, April 7, 1912; this article states that the name of the developer was E. C. Roe, and that he
was the developer of the Roe Apartments on Pike Street near 9
“Building News,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, October 10, 1912; see also “Broadway district developing rapidly,” The
Seattle Times, June 22, 1913.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Continuing in 1912, Voorhees designed another garage at 915 E. Pike Street for James Plumber, now used as retail and
office space. The three-story reinforced concrete structure measured 60 x 98 feet and was valued at $6,000.
Seattle Department of Neighborhoods historic inventory for this building states that the building is an early and intact
example of an urban auto dealership, featuring a showroom with large display windows, car storage in the rear, with
auto parts storage on upper floors; the large Chicago-style pivoting windows on the second floor are particularly
noted. Over the years, the building housed various dealerships including Chevrolet, Graham, and REO. Like Voorhees’
1424 Broadway building mentioned above, this structure is also directly adjacent to the Tyson building, along Pike,
which was under construction at the same time.

In 1912 Voorhees designed an automobile garage for L. Kay at 1022 E. Pike Street, which was constructed in the spring
and summer of 1913.
This building, located at the northwest corner of 11
Avenue and E. Pike Street, was to be
occupied by J. W. Leavitt & Company, the agents for Overland automobiles. At the time, the 64 x 112 foot reinforced
concrete building was only built to a height of two stories, but with a valuation of $30,000, it was described as “one of
the costlier new buildings now under construction.”
The builder was David Dow.

In 1915, Voorhees was contracted to design two additional stories for this 1022 E. Pike structure, by that time known
as the Leavitt Building, which added 14,000 square feet of floor space, for a total of 36,000 square feet in the building
By 1915, the J. W. Leavitt Company was described as the Pacific Coast distributors for Overland and Willys
Utility motor cars, which were produced in Indianapolis, Indiana. The addition was valued at $12,600 and completed in
1917. Enlargement of the space allowed a reorganization of the various departments occupying the building. In the
new configuration, the large basement was devoted to warehousing automobiles for availability during rush periods
when the factory orders exceeded capacity; in fact, the basement was equipped with “an overhead holding device by
which machines are suspended from the ceiling... [which] doubles the capacity of the room.” The first floor was
occupied by the sales department and showroom; on the second floor was the service and parts department. The new
third floor was devoted to used automobiles, which was growing due to the company’s sales policy which allowed a
purchaser to turn in an old Overland automobile as partial payment for a new one. The new fourth floor was occupied
by a work and paint shop, presumably focused as much on their used car stock as repairs to customer’s automobiles.
The original 1913 project was most likely Voorhees’ first work for the Overland automobile company. Today, the
building is occupied by the Monique Lofts condominiums.

Voorhees completed five commercial garages in 1916. One of these garages, for A. Schlossmacher and located at 1132
Broadway Court at 10
Avenue and Seneca Street, is still standing one block south of the subject building, although it
has been altered significantly. The building was described as a one-story brick garage with basement, measuring 60 x
120 feet, and costing about $10,000. The builder was E. A. Nelson.
Another garage was located not on “Auto Row,”
but at 700 S. Jackson Street in today’s International District. This one-story, reinforced concrete and brick facade
building remains intact and continues to be used as an automotive garage.

The other three garages dating to 1916 appear to have been demolished, or may never have been built. One was at
the northwest corner of 12
Avenue and E. Pine, for the North Pacific Oakland Company (tax records indicate that
the building currently at that location dates from 1927). The structure was described as two stories with basement and
mezzanine, reinforced concrete and mill construction, and measuring 52 x 121 feet. The building featured terrazzo
floors, steam heating, one freight elevator, and construction value was estimated to be $25,000.

A second demolished 1916 garage was located at 1701 Broadway, at the northwest corner of Olive Street. It was built
by Sandven & Sundt, for the Garford Motor Truck Company on land owned by the Clapp Estate. The one-story-with-

“Building News,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, October 22, 1912.
“Important building permits, May 23,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, May 24, 1913.
“Broadway District Developing Rapidly,” The Seattle Times, June 22, 1913, p. 38.
“Contract Let For Enlarging Auto Building,” The Seattle Times, January 24, 1915, p. 42; see also “Complete Plans for
Apartments,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, February 8, 1917.
Seattle Daily Bulletin, May 2, 1916, addressed then as 952 E. Seneca. The building is now occupied by The File Box
self-storage company.
Seattle Daily Bulletin, January 5, 1916.
“New home for Oakland Car,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, September 7, 1916.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

basement structure measured 120 x 128 feet, was constructed of brick and concrete, and had an estimated cost of
Today the site is occupied by the Seattle Central Community College.

A third 1916 garage was designed for Frank W. Palmer and was located on 11
Avenue between Pike and Pine Streets.
It was described as four stories with basement, 60 x 120 feet in area, with reinforced concrete walls and mill
construction interior, and valued at $50,000. The building featured a freight elevator and was to “be used by an
automobile agency just located here” but the agency was not named. This structure may not have been built.
However, the same article also mentions a $10,000 two-story automobile accessories building designed by Voorhees
for Cohen Brothers at 1110 E. Pike Street between 11
and 12
Avenues; the occupant was the Goodrich Tire
Service. This building was concrete with mill construction interior, and built by the Mac Rae Brothers, and completed
in 1917.
This building remains extant, but altered and repurposed.

The year 1917 was also busy for Voorhees on Auto Row. For the southwest corner double lot at 12
Avenue and E.
Pine Street, Voorhees designed a 113 x 180 foot reinforced concrete garage again for the Overland Company (this
division known as Overland-Pacific Company), lessee of the building. The property owners were Henry Reese, the
Warrack Construction Company, Mrs. C. Riverman and H. Riverman. The building included garage, a large 60 x 120
foot salesroom, a women’s reception room, and a repair shop; and featured cream colored brick cladding, a freight
elevator, and terrazzo floors. A mezzanine floor and “double decked basement” enabled the company to store over
350 cars, a news article attested. This building is today somewhat altered, and used as the Seattle Police Department’s
East Precinct station.

In August of 1917, the Willys-Overland Company named Voorhees the supervising architect for all of its building
projects. One of the first projects Voorhees undertook in this capacity was the construction supervision of a $150,000
reinforced concrete garage and salesroom in Spokane; it is not clear whether this was Voorhees’ design.
Overland projects could not be located for this report, but presumably they may have been located outside
Washington State (by 1922, Willys-Overland had West Coast branches in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Fresno, Portland,
Seattle, and Spokane).

Voorhees also had several other “Auto Row” clients in that year. As described in a previous section of this report, he
designed a new commercial garage for the Paige Motor Sales Company at the southwest corner of E. Pine Street and
Boylston Avenue—the building occupied by Paige Motors immediately before they occupied the subject building of this
Another Voorhees-designed building, at 12
Avenue and E. Pine Street, began construction in August 1917, to
be occupied by Ballou & Wright, an automobile accessories dealer. The concrete and brick veneer structure measured
60 x 113 feet and was three stories in height. The builder was I. S. Harding, and the construction value was estimated
to be $35,000. The owner was Cornelius Mehan.

Voorhees had a total of approximately ten projects alone in 1917, and approximately ten publicized in 1924, including
apartment buildings, commercial buildings, remodel jobs, stores, garages, and so forth.
However, only a handful of
projects by Voorhees could be uncovered for the entire six years between about 1918 to 1923, based on available
inventories of his work, and available databases. The reasons for this apparent and unusual dearth of work, or perhaps

“Soon start truck garage,” Seattle Daily Business, September 14, 1916; and “Plans for Garford branch home
announced,” The Seattle Times, October 8, 1916.
“Plan 4 story garage on Eleventh Ave,” Seattle Daily Business, December 18, 1916; additional article about the tire
store include “Contract awarded,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, January 13, 1917; and “New building for Goodrich Tire
Service,” The Seattle Times, January 21, 1917, p.2.
“Overland to Erect Building,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, October 24, 1917; and “Break ground for Overland building,”
The Seattle Times, November 4, 1917, Automobile section pp.1-2.
“Overland Names Seattle Man,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, August 16, 1917. The article refers to Willys-Overland as “a
big Eastern firm.”
“Contract Let for Garage,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, May 26, 1917.
“Store Building Contract Let,” Seattle Daily Bulletin, August 17, 1917.
In 1917, work included repairs to a garage, a tire store, an addition to a garage, four apartment buildings, a dye
works, two new garages, an auto parts store, and a bank renovation. In 1924, work included four neighborhood
commercial buildings, an industrial building, a garment factory, an automobile service garage, an apartment building, and
a laundry.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

lack of publicity for existing work, is unknown. There are few mentions of Voorhees in the Seattle Times at all during
this period. Society columns briefly mention that Voorhees’ wife and son visited San Diego for three months in the
spring of 1923, apparently without him. Perhaps his work with the Willys-Overland company took him outside of the
Seattle area during this period, although no records could be found for this report supporting this theory.

During this period, at least two classified advertisements in 1919 suggest that Voorhees may have been pursuing his
own development projects. One lists for lease “Automobile building on corner in center of automobile district.
Beautiful show room 60 x 60, paneled, terrazzo floors, ivory finish, plate glass [windows] two sides, shop on second
floor 60 x 100 with incline to street. Steam heat furnished. V. W. Voorhees, 411 Eitel Building.”
The location of this
garage is unclear, but Voorhees may have been the architect and developer for it, although it is also possible that he
was acting as an agent for a client. Another classified ad from the same year by V. W. Voorhees offers a furnished 8-
room house with garage, for rent, in the Mt. Baker neighborhood.

In any event, the few projects attributed to Voorhees between 1918 and 1923, that could be found, include the
• Washington Arms Apartments (1919) at 1065 E. Prospect Street, near Volunteer Park. This well-detailed brick
Colonial Revival structure follows a C-shaped entry courtyard plan. An unusual feature is that one of the
arms of the building forming the courtyard forms an extremely acute angle in plan, due to the shape of the lot.
The client and developer for this project was Mae Young.

• The subject building of this report (1920).
• Seattle Lodge of the Knights of Pythias (1920) at 1929 3
Avenue, midblock between Stewart and Virginia
Streets, in downtown Seattle. This structure features two stories with mezzanine (in appearance, three
stories), on a 60 x 108 foot site. The building was valued at $50,000 by Rhodes Brothers, the owners, when it
began construction in March 1920. The Knights of Pythias, a fraternal organization, was to occupy the entire
upper floors, while the first floor occupant was to be the Wurlitzer Organ Company and the Theater
Equipment Company. An unusual feature of the building was the exterior cladding, used for the first time in
Seattle, which was described as “a beautiful white stone deposit mined at Mount Angel, Oregon... which is said
to have the textile strength of rock and is fireproof... strangely enough, it is said, that this stone can be sawed
by any saw that will cut lumber and into any dimensions desired.”
By the description, the cladding would
appear to be tuff, a volcanic building stone; however, an inspection of the building for this report has not
confirmed this; the building may ultimately have been clad in terracotta.
• Seattle Gun Club clubhouse (1920) at Fort Lawton. The land was donated by the War Department, and
Voorhees donated plans and specifications. Resembling a Craftsman-style home, the design featured a full-
width front porch, deeply overhanging eaves, a 30 x 50 foot assembly room, and a large fireplace. Other
spaces were devoted to lockers, dressing rooms, ammunition storage, restrooms, a kitchen, and living
quarters for the keeper. The building was valued at $10,000 and construction was expected to begin in March
1920 and to be completed in three months, but the building may never have actually been constructed.

• Apartment and store building at 4747 California Avenue SW in West Seattle (1923, demolished) for W. H.

In 1924, citations for architectural projects by Voorhees begin to appear in newspapers again, including four
neighborhood commercial buildings, an industrial building, a garment factory, an automobile sales and service garage, an
apartment building, and a laundry. Of these, some of the buildings were designed with integral automobile garages
(apparently for parking, not for service)—including the neighborhood commercial building at 1400 34
Avenue in
Madrona for S. Rogers (the garage portion is now addressed as 3406 E. Union Street); the industrial building located at
413-23 Fairview Avenue (altered) in South Lake Union for A. C. Goerig, to be occupied by the Saxony Knitting

“Automobile Building,” classified advertisement under “business opportunities,” The Seattle Times, September 9,
1919, p.27.
“Modern 8-room...,” classified advertisement under “furnished houses,” The Seattle Times, November 19, 1919, p.27.
Glickstein, p.5.
“Pythians are to have new home,” March 21, 1920, p. 24. The article includes a rendering of the front elevation.
“Seattle Gun Club to be in home by June for Northwest meet,” The Seattle Times, March 14, 1920, p.3.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Company; and the neighborhood shops structure at 4305-09 Alaska Street (demolished) in West Seattle for Walter

The sales and service garage constructed in 1924 may have been Voorhees’ last building directly related to automobile
sales or service. No longer extant, it was located at 321 Westlake Avenue in the south Lake Union area, and was
described as one story, masonry construction, measuring 60 x 108 feet. The occupant was to be Howell Thompson
Motor Company, the distributor of Star automobiles in King County, and the owner of the property was Robinson,
Theime & Morris. The estimated construction valuation was $15,000 and the builder was Seattle Construction &
Finance Company.

Around 1924, Voorhees began to work on several real estate investment projects for the Joseph Vance Lumber
Company. That year, he designed for them an industrial building occupying the half-block on Terry Avenue between
Mercer and Republican Streets, just south of Lake Union. Measuring 420 x 115 feet, the building had three stories with
a basement, and was constructed of reinforced concrete on piles with mill construction on the interior. The building
featured a large freight elevator for every sixty feet of elevation. Before the building was completed in 1925, half of the
building was already secured with a twenty-year lease to the Sherman, Clay & Company wholesale department. The
construction value for the building was estimated at between $450,000 and $500,000.

Another early project for Vance was the conversion of the former Seattle Engineering School into apartments, in 1925.
The building, which is today the Marqueen Hotel, occupies the entire street frontage on Queen Anne Avenue between
Roy and Mercer Streets. The remodel project created 68 two- and three-bedroom suites, was estimated to cost
$200,000, and was expected to bring the total building value to half a million dollars.
Shortly thereafter, in 1926,
Vance commissioned Voorhees to design the Lloyd Building (a designated Seattle landmark) and the Vance Hotel, both
located at the intersection of 6
Avenue and Stewart Street.
In 1927, Voorhees moved his office from the Eitel
Building to the Lloyd Building. In his final work for Vance, Voorhees designed the Joseph Vance Building at 3
Union downtown in 1929-30.

Voorhees’ projects for Vance were by far his largest and most complex projects, with considerable architectural detail
and sizable budgets. Both the Lloyd Building and the Vance Hotel are ten stories in height, and both are exceeded by
the fourteen-story Vance Building. A news article at the time estimated the construction cost of the Vance Hotel to be
$450,000, or $5.8 million in today’s dollars.

Other significant works by Voorhees during his career that should be noted include the Troy Laundry (1927, with
additions by Henry Bittman in 1944 and 1946) at 311 Fairview Avenue N., which is today a designated Seattle landmark.
Voorhees’ obituary also lists his as the architect of the Maynard Hospital in Seattle (demolished), and the Greyhound
Bus Terminal in Spokane.

After completing the Joseph Vance building, and during the subsequent economic depression of the 1930s, Voorhees’
work becomes difficult to trace. Though he continued to lease his office space in the Lloyd Building, until the early

“New building on Fairview to cost $45,000,” Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce, August 20, 1924; “New building for
Junction to cost $20,000 – Architect V. W. Voorhees lets contract to L. B. Russell for store and garage structure on
West Alaska Street,” Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce, September 24, 1914; and “Bids called on building—Architect
V. W. Voorhees wants figures at once on structure containing 7 stores and garage,” Seattle Daily Journal of
Commerce, June 16, 1924. See also Seattle Department of Neighborhoods historical sites inventory for 423 Fairview
Avenue (aka 413 Fairview), dated June 4, 2005, which notes the architectural similarities of this building with Voorhees’
later Troy Laundry building of 1927, and also states that the first occupant was the Granville Company.
“$15,000 building for Westlake auto structure,” Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce, November 26, 1924, p.1.
“Plans half million dollar building for Terry Avenue,” Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce, June 9, 1924, p.1; and
“$200,000 lease signed by Sherman, Clay Co.,” The Seattle Times, November 2, 1924, p.21.
“$500,000 Investment,” The Seattle Times, April 26, 1925, p. 22.
Thomas Street History Services, “Lloyd Building Nomination Report,” Seattle landmark nomination, Seattle
Department of Neighborhoods, p. 3.
“10-Story Building Is Next Project In Times Square Area,” The Seattle Times, January 12, 1926, p. 1

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

1940s, and maintained his architecture licensure with Washington State until 1945, his business activity likely slowed.

In 1958 he left Seattle for Santa Barbara, California, where he lived in retirement until his death in 1970 at age 94.

E. The engineer, Henry W. Bittman

Signatures on original drawings on file indicate that the engineer for the subject building was Henry W. Bittman, a well
known architect and skilled engineer in Seattle during the first half of the twentieth century, although at the time of the
subejct building’s design and construction, he was not yet a licensed architect.
He was a prolific designer, with many
well-known downtown Seattle buildings to his credit.

Bittman was born in 1882 and grew up in Greenpoint, a suburb of New York City. His father was a prosperous and
prominent interior designer, and Henry attended Cooper Union in New York City to study engineering. After leaving
New York, he briefly worked in Chicago as a bridge engineer.

In 1906, Bittman moved to Seattle, and praticed for a year with architect William Kingsley. By 1908, Bittman had
established his own structural engineering practice, and specialized in the design of structural steel skeletons for
Seattle’s rapidly expanding urban core. From 1914 to 1919, he was also the representative for the Puget Sound &
Alaska Powder Company, an explosives supplier.

A complete list of Bittman’s work was not discovered for this report. However, a review of news articles from 1918
to 1922 provides information about other projects by Bittman during the time that the subject building was
constructed. Although practicing as an engineer and not yet licensed as an architect, he appears to have been designing
with a considerable level of skill. A few projects were automobile-related, and some were located in the “Auto Row”
area. Works found include: [See photos of Bittman’s work during this period, pp. 60-61]
• Chanslor & Lyon Building (1919) at Twelfth and Madison. This building is triangular in plan, and was described
as reinforced concrete construction, three stories in height with a mezzanine, at a construction cost of
$60,000. Chanslor & Lyon was an automotive accessories dealer. The building was later occupied by Bekins
Moving and Storage, was recently altered by the addition of a fourth floor, and is today known as Trace

• Stewart Motor Car Company Building (1919), 1520 Thirteenth Avenue, between Pike and Pine, for W.H.
Cleaver of Everett. Stewart Motor Cars was the Washington State agency for the Pilot Motor Car Company.
The building was described as two stories, constructed of pressed brick, and measuring 90 by 120 feet. The
building appears to be intact today, although currently unoccupied.

• A four-story brick and terracotta building on Fourth Avenue, near Bell Street (1920). The building was to be
leased for a minimum of five years to the State of Washington, and was to be occupied by branch offices of
the Fisheries Commissioner, the State Health Department, the Automobile Licensing Department, Secretary
of State’s Office, Mine Inspector, Insurance Commissioner, Bank Examiner, and several others. The building
was to feature reception rooms for the use of the governor and a small auditorium for public hearings. The
structure was to be built by Hans Pederson and was expected to cost $100,000, but it is not clear if this
building was actually constructed.

• Grunbaum Brothers Furniture Company (1921) on the west side of Sixth Avenue, near Pine Street. This highly
ornate four-story building was described as steel and concrete construction, measuring 120 feet deep with
180 feet of street frontage. The building features large three-part windows and is clad in terracotta and tile.
The estimated cost at the time of construction was $350,000. Today, the building is known as the Decatur
Building and is a designated Seattle landmark.

Glickstein, p. 5.
Glickstein, p. 5; and “Victor Voorhees,” obituary, The Santa Barbara News-Press, August 11, 1970, p.B-8.
Information about Bittman derived primarily from Provost, Caterina, “Henry W. Bittman,” in Ochsner, pp.192-197.
“Plan construction at once of concrete building,” The Seattle Times, July 20, 1919, p. 18.
“New street will be added to auto district of city,” The Seattle Times, December 12, 1919, Real Estate News page.
“For state offices,” The Seattle Times, November 12, 1920, p. 11.
“New store will rise,” The Seattle Times, May 8, 1921, p. 21.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

• Mack Truck Building (1921) at the northwest corner of Ninth and Roy, near Westlake. The structure was
owned by Clarence Bagley and leased to the Mack Truck Company, to serve as its general local branch. The
251 by 117 foot, one-story brick building included salesrooms, offices, assembly work, service rooms, and
warehouse space. The service portion of the building was designed to accommodate the repair of seven trucks
at once, with seven driveways for each stall. Today the buiding is occupied by the Buca de Beppo restaurant,
and a Ducati motorcycle shop.

In 1923, Bittman was licensed in Washington State and operated his architecture and engineering practice for over four
decades. With his background expertise in structural design, many of Bittman’s best-known buildings are highrises,
including the eleven-story Terminal Sales Building (1923) at First and Virginia, the seven-story Eagles Temple (1924-25,
altered) at Seventh and Union, and the United Shopping Tower / Olympic Tower (1928-31) at Third and Pike.
Notably, all of these buildings are very ornate, well detailed, and represent a variety of design modes, from Commercial
Gothic Revival to Art Deco. Bittman designed a wide variety of building types, including commercial store and loft
blocks, industrial buildings, hotels, civic buildings, and theaters, mostly in the Seattle area. During the 1920s and 1930s,
Bittman was a regular architect for the Clise family, a major landholder at the north end of downtown Seattle.

Other well-known Bittman designs include the elegant and restrained Monte Cristo Hotel in Everett (1924-25); the
Mann Building (1926) at Third and Union, today the home of the Wild Ginger restaurant, and a designated Seattle
landmark; the exuberant Music Box Theater (1928, destroyed); and the Volker Building (1928), located at Terry and
Lenora, and now owned by the Cornish College of the Arts.

By the 1930s and 1940s, Bittman designed in the popular Moderne style and the International Style. One of his last
major commissions was as associate architect and resident engineer for the new Seattle Post-Intelligencer Building
(Lockwood & Greene of New York City, 1947, altered), located at Sixth and Wall, and later occupied by Group Health
for many years. Bittman practiced until his death, in 1953 in Seattle.

Although Henry Bittman was the consulting engineer for the architect Victor Voorhees in 1920 on the subject building
of this report, no evidence could be found that they worked together again (although both were so prolific that it is
certainly possible that they did, over the course of their careers). However, Bittman did design additions in 1944 and
1946 to the Troy Laundry at 311 Fairview Avenue N., which Voorhees had originally designed in 1927.

“New building planned,” The Seattle Times, November 10, 1921, p. 10.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


Bagley, Clarence. History of Seattle from the Earliest Settlement to the Present Time, Vol. 2. 1916,

Berner, Richard C. Seattle 1900-1920: From Boomtown, Urban Turbulence, to Restoration.
Seattle: Charles Press, 1991.

BOLA Architecture + Planning, “1205 East Pine Street,” Seattle Landmark Nomination, June 2007.

City of Seattle:
• Department of Neighborhoods, Historic Resources Survey database,
• Department of Planning and Development, Microfilm Library, permit records and drawings.
• Department Of Planning and Development Parcel Data, 2010.

D.A. Sanborn. Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps. Seattle, Washington (various dates) maps accessed from Seattle Public
Libraries, online.

HistoryLink, the Online Encyclopedia to Washington State History.

King County Assessor’s Records, at Puget Sound Regional Archives, at Bellevue Community College, Bellevue, WA.

King County Parcel Viewer website.

Kroll Map Company Inc., "Kroll Map of Seattle," various dates.

Nyberg, Folke, and Victor Steinbrueck, for the Historic Seattle Preservation and Development Authority. “Capitol Hill:
An Inventory of Buildings and Urban Design Resources.” Seattle: Historic Seattle, 1975.

Nyberg, Folke, and Victor Steinbrueck, for the Historic Seattle Preservation and Development Authority. “First Hill: An
Inventory of Buildings and Urban Design Resources.” Seattle: Historic Seattle, 1975.

Ochsner, Jeffrey Karl, ed. Shaping Seattle Architecture: A Historical Guide to the Architects. Seattle: University of
Washington Press, 1994.

Ochsner, Jeffrey Karl, and Dennis Alan Andersen. Distant Corner: Seattle Architects and the Legacy of HH Richardson.
Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2003.

R.L. Polk and Company. Polk’s Directory to the City of Seattle. Seattle: various dates.

Rosenberg, Casey. Streetcar Suburb: Architectural Roots of a Seattle Neighborhood. Seattle, WA: Fanlight Press, 1989.

The Seattle Times newspaper. Seattle, Washington. Includes previous incarnations as The Seattle Press Times, The Seattle
Daily Times, and The Seattle Sunday Times.

Sheridan, Mimi. “Historic Property Survey Report: Seattle’s Commercial Districts.” City of Seattle, Department of
Neighborhoods, 2002.

Veka, Clay H. “Seattle’s Street Railway System and the Urban Form: Lessons from the Madison Street Cable Car.”
Unpublished paper, University of Washington, March 14, 2007.

Washington State Division of Archives and Record Management. Historic Photo and Assessor Documentation.

Williams, Jacqueline. "A New Seattle Neighborhood, Courtesy of J. A. Moore." Columbia Magazine, Spring 2002, Vol. 16,
No. 1, pp. 30-35.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Williams, Jacqueline. The Hill With A Future: Seattle's Capitol Hill, 1900-1946. Seattle: CPK Ink, 2001.

Woodbridge, Sally, and Roger Montgomery. A Guide to Architecture in Washington State. Seattle: University of
Washington Press, 1980.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


Submitted & Prepared by: Nicholson Kovalchick Architects
310 First Avenue S., Suite 4-S
Seattle WA 98104
Phone: 206-933-1150

Contact: David Peterson
Direct: 206-494-9791


Reviewed by:


Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013



Site map; red box indicates location of site. North is up. (Google Maps, 2013)

Neighborhood context: Subject parcel located by the red box. North is up. (2013, Google Maps)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Neighborhood context: View east on E. Union Street. Subject parcel indicated by arrow.

Neighborhood context: View south on Broadway from E. Pike Street. Subject parcel indicated by arrow.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

The building in 2013

North elevation (Union) in 2013. Compare masonry piers and window sizes to 1937 and 1964 photos (pp. 40-41);
truncated piers are not original, nor are storefront windows below the transoms, except for the storefront entry
visible at left. All transoms this elevation appear to be original.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

West elevation (Broadway) in 2013. This elevation appears to remain highly intact; only the storefront windows below
the transoms of the leftmost two bays are not original. Exterior trusses are just visible above the parapet, on the right.

West elevation (Broadway) in 2013. This elevation appears to remain highly intact.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

East elevation (left) in 2013, facing Broadway Court. Garage doors at left lead into warehouse space in southern
portion of building. Garage doors are non-original.

Interior of south portion of building, looking west

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Interior of south portion of building, looking east

Interior of south portion of building, looking east. Note ceiling of 2x6 inch boards “laminated” on end.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Interior of north portion of building, facing west. The freestanding metal stud wall is a recent construction.

Interior of north portion of building, facing west. Note shoring posts supporting failing roof beam.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Detail, parapet (at left), along west elevation. Adjacent building at right.

Entry, north elevation, in 2013. This entry appears to be original.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


Detail of an 1899 map of the site, showing original street names and configuration (Seattle Municipal Archives #1553)

1912 Baist map, Plates 4 and 7 (stitched together), with the subject site located by the red dotted box. Visible are the
Academy of Holy Names (labeled as “St. Joseph’s Academy”) and the Broadway Building on the subject block, the
future Seattle University Garrand Building (labeled as “Catholic School”) in block 142, First Baptist Church and Minor
Hospital in block 136, St. Mary’s Episcopal Church at block 139, Broadway Livery and Sale Stables just north of the
subject site, and the Burke Mansion at block 135. The triangular site marked “Vac” at Broadway and Harvard is the
future location of the Scottish Rite Cathedral.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

1893 Sanborn fire insurance map; the Garrand Building of Seattle University is visible in block 149.

1905 Sanborn fire insurance map; the Academy of the Holy Names is visible just south of the subject site in block 136.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

1951 Sanborn fire insurance map

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Great Western Motors location at Boylston and Pike, home of Great Western Motors from 1917-19. See also image
below, at lower right. (From The Seattle Times, June 17, 1917)

The three locations of Great Western Motors in Seattle: At lower left, the Tyson Building storefront at 903 E. Pike,
where the firm started in 1916; at lower right, the purpose-built structure at Boylston and E. Pine was their home from
1917-19, and top image, the subject building, was their location beginning in 1920. (Image from the Seattle Times,
February 8, 1920)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

The showroom of the subject building decorated for their open house, from a featured photo in The Seattle times
titled “Automobiles Exhibited by Great Western Motors”, October 17, 1920, p.6.

(Left) Edward F. Sweeney, from An Illustrated History of the State of Washington by Rev. H.K. Hines; and (Right)
George M. Price (2nd from left, back row) at a meeting of Paige Dealers, from The Seattle Times, Jan.11, 1920, p.7.

The Savoy Hotel was constructed by E. F. Sweeney in 1906 (left), with four additional stories added by him in 1907
(right). Sweeney operated the hotel until he sold it in 1911. (Left image is part of an advertisement from a 1906 Post-
Intelligencer newspaper, from; and at right is a period postcard from

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

(Left) A 1920 Paige Larchmont from Great Western Motors (UW Special Collections TRA0136); and (Right) Frederick
O. Paige, from the Richard Paige collection and Harry M. Jewett (from The Horseless Age Magazine, March 1, 1917).

(Left) An early advertisement for Paige automobiles (The Seattle Times, August 27, 1916, p.3);
(Right) A later advertisement for the new Jewett line (The Seattle Times, September 3, 1922, p.20).

(Left) The used car department for Great Western Motors, located in an unidentified building on 10
Avenue, “just
around the corner” from the subject building of this report. (Image from The Seattle Times, July 16, 1922, p.27).

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

The subject building as a sales office for General Motors Truck Company, from The Seattle Times, Sept. 30, 1923, p.7.

The building in 1937 (tax assessor photo), view from northwest. Note location of masonry piers, window sizes, and
shaped parapet.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

View eastward on Union, from the corner of Harvard Avenue, in 1960. Subject building at center left of image,
indicated by arrow; note shaped parapet is still intact. (Seattle Municipal Archives #7685)

The building in 1964 (tax assessor photo), view from northwest. Compare masonry piers and window sizes to 1937
photo; additional, non-load-bearing piers have been added. Transoms appear to have been simply covered, rather than

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

The building in 2002 (tax assessor photo)

Historic context: The neighborhood in 1905. The image is a view eastward from the roof of the newly-built Broadway
Building (see image in following page) at Broadway and Madison; the latter street is visible at the upper right. The
wooden fence with widely spaced posts at lower center left is located along the north side of Union Street, which
intersects with Madison at far right. The subject site would have been out of the frame, a few buildings to the left.
(Photo by Asahel Curtis, UW Special Collections, CUR283).

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Historic context: The Burke mansion at Madison and Boylston, c.1880s. (

Historic context: (Left and right) Academy of the Holy Names, adjacent to subject site, later known as St. Joseph’s
Academy, and others. Another Catholic institution in existence at the same time, known as the Academy of Holy
Names, was located downtown at 7
and Jackson. (Advertisement from The Catholic Progress newspaper, October 14,
1904, p.5, and photo by Asahel Curtis, UW Special Collections, CUR562).

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Historic context: View of the Parish and School of the Immaculate Conception (John Parkinson, 1894) at Madison
Street and Broadway Avenue, one block south of the subject site, ca.1906. This was the first building of the future
Seattle University campus. Today slightly altered, it is known as the Garrand Building at SU. (UW Special Collections,
photo by Asahel Curtis, CUR189).

Historic context: Broadway Building at the northeast corner of Broadway and Madison, in 1905. The subject site is just
down the street to the left; at that time, the site was occupied by two houses. (Museum of History and Industry,
PEMCO Webster & Stevens Collection, 1983.10.7370.1)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Historic context: St. Mark’s Church, at Harvard between Union and Broadway, in 1906. In a few years, the Scottish
Rite Cathedral would be built directly to the right of this building. (UW Special Collections, PSE095)

Historic context: Laying of the cornerstone of First Baptist Church, in 1910, showing nearby housing
on Union at Harvard. (

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Historic context: First Baptist Church in 2013. (

Historic context: Broadway Livery and Sale Stables, at Union and 10
, in1910. (UW Special Collections LEE124)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Historic context: Old Fire Station #25, in 1924, at Harvard and Union. (Seattle Municipal Archives #2686)

Historic context: Scottish Rite Cathedral at Broadway and Harvard, around 1912. St. Mark’s Church (see photo
previous page) was, at the time, located directly behind this building; the subject site would be just behind the Scottish
Rite Cathedral, at lower right, across the street, although the subject building is yet unbuilt at the time of this photo.
(UW Special Collections, photo by Asahel Curtis, CUR912).

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Historic context: Minor Hospital (built 1910), now part of First Baptist Church, at Spring and Harvard. (Left image from
MOHAI, Seattle Historical Society Collection SHS221; right image is tax assessor photo, 2011).

Historic context: The neighborhood in 1920. View from 12
and Madison (the latter indicated by the streetcar tracks);
the steeple is First Baptist Church at Harvard and Union. The subject site is not visible, but approximately behind the
buildings at the center right of the image.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Examples of other Auto Row automobile dealerships: Automobile dealerships were frequently ornate and in prominent
locations. (Top left) Packard dealership (Charles Haynes, 1911) at 12
& Pike in 1937, by then no longer a dealership;
(top right) another Packard dealership (Louis Svarz, 1920) at Pike & Melrose; (center) the Tyson Building, which housed
many dealerships over time, and was the first location of Great Western Motors (Charles Haynes, 1912); (Lower left
and right) The Lieback Garage Building, which housed the Seattle Automobile Sales Company, shown in 2012 and 1918.
(All images tax assessor photos, except lower right, from University of Oregon Archives #pna-21656).

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


Other work by the architect Victor Voorhees – Typical home design from his c.1907-11 book, Western Home Builder.

Other automobile-related work by the architect Victor Voorhees – 1424 E. Broadway (1912), garage constructed for
C. C. Roe. This may have been Voorhees' first automobile-related building that he designed. (Department of
Neighborhoods photo, 2010)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Other automobile-related work by the architect Victor Voorhees – Automobile dealership building for L. S. Roe, at the
northwest corner of 12
and Union, built in 1912; this partial view is 1920. Constructed as one story, the building was
originally intended to eventually be three stories in height. The building is today considerably altered, remains only one
story, and is occupied by a Ferrari automobile showroom. (Seattle Municipal Archives #12839, detail)

Other automobile-related work by the architect Victor Voorhees – 915 E. Pike Street (1912), which housed several
dealerships over time, including Chevrolet, Graham, and REO. Visible at right is the Tyson Building, at the corner of
Pike and Broadway at 905 E. Pike Street (Charles Haynes, 1912). (Department of Neighborhoods photo, 2010)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Other automobile-related work by the architect Victor Voorhees – The Overland automobile agency at 11
and Pike,
first two stories built by Voorhees in 1913; the upper two stories were added by Voorhees in 1915. This view dates
from 1945; today the building is known as the Monique Lofts condominiums. (UW Special Collections SEA2472).

Other automobile-related work by the architect Victor Voorhees – 1110 E. Pike (1916), first occupied by Goodrich
Tire Service (Department of Neighborhoods photo, 2010)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Other automobile-related work by the architect Victor Voorhees – 700 S. Jackson Street (1916) in the International
District. The building still houses automotive-related uses. (Google Maps Streetview, 2012,

Other automobile-related work by the architect Victor Voorhees – (Two images above) 1132 Broadway Court, built in
1917, half a block south of the subject building. (Above, Tax assessor photo, showing view in 1937, and below, 2012
view from Google Maps Streetview at

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Other automobile-related work by the architect Victor Voorhees – Great Western Motors at Boylston and Pine
(1917), occupied by that firm 1917-1919, prior to moving to the subject building of this report. Like the subject
building, this structure was also built by owner E. F. Sweeney specifically for Great Western Motors. (Department of
Neighborhoods photo, 2001)

Other work by the architect Victor Voorhees – Washington Arms Apartments (1919) at 1065 E. Prospect Street, near
Volunteer Park. (Department of Neighborhoods photo)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Other work by the architect Victor Voorhees – Knights of Pythias Building (1920) at 1929 3
Avenue, in downtown
Seattle between Virginia and Stewart Streets; today known as the Heiden Building. (Department of Neighborhoods
photo, 2012)

Other work by the architect Victor Voorhees – Seattle Gun Club clubhouse at Fort Lawton (1920, probably unbuilt).
(Image from The Seattle Times, March 14, 1920, p.3).

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Other work by the architect Victor Voorhees – Two views of the neighborhood commercial building at 1400 34

Street (1924) in Madrona. The right photo is the garage portion of the building; it is visible at the far right of the left
photo. The garage portion served as parking for the storefront shops visible at left. (Tax assessor photos, 2003)

Other automobile-related work by the architect Victor Voorhees – 321 Westlake Avenue (1924, demolished), view in
1937. Originally occupied by Howell Thompson Motor Company, distributor of Star automobiles, this may have been
Voorhees’ last building directly related to automobile sales or service. (Tax assessor photo)

Other work by the architect Victor Voorhees – 1925 renovation for the Vance Company of the Seattle Engineering
School (1918) into apartments. Today the building is the Marqueen Hotel at Queen Anne Avenue and Mercer Street.

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Other work by the architect Victor Voorhees – (Top left and right) The Vance Hotel (1926) and Lloyd Building (1926)
both at 6
and Stewart, and (Lower left) the Joseph Vance Building (1929-30) at 3
and Union in downtown Seattle.
(Color images from Seattle Department of Neighborhoods; upper left image from UW Special Collections SEA1227).
(Lower right) Photo of architect Victor Voorhees (Image from Seattle Times, January 3, 1926, p.31)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


Henry Bittman: Chanslor & Lyon Building (1919) at Twelfth and Madison.
(Department of Neighborhoods photo)

Henry Bittman: Stewart Motor Car Company Building (1919), 1520 Thirteenth Avenue
(Tax assessor photo)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013

Henry Bittman: Grunbaum Brothers Furniture Company (1921) Sixth Avenue, near Pine Street.
(Photo by Joe Mabel, Wikimedia)

Henry Bittman: Mack Truck Building (1921) at Ninth and Roy
(Google Maps Streetview,

Troy Laundry (Victor Voorhees 1927, with additions by Henry Bittman in 1944 and 1946)
(Photo by Joe Mabel, Wikimedia)

Nicholson Koval chi ck Archi tects – Great Western Motors Buildi ng Seattle Landmark Nomination – Jul y 24, 2013


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