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Summary for 4470 35th AVE / Parcel ID 1324039013 / Inv # DPR102

Historic Name: West Seattle Golf Course Shop Common Name:
Style: Other, Vernacular Neighborhood: West Seattle Junction
Built By: Year Built: 1940
 
Significance
In the opinion of the survey, this property appears to meet the criteria of the National Register of Historic Places.
The Works Progress Administration (WPA) constructed this maintenance, shop and storage building in 1940 to serve the adjacent West Seattle Golf Course. The city had acquired the site for the golf course in 1935 from the Puget Mill Company, which had owned the land for more than half a century. After its establishment in 1853, the Puget Mill Company had constructed four major sawmills by 1880 and had acquired over 100,000 acres of timberland in the Puget Sound area, including much of West Seattle. West Seattle first gained fame as the landing point of the Denny Party in 1851, however residential and commercial development was slow to come to the area due to its topography and geographic isolation. This problem was partially solved with the establishment of ferry service from Seattle to the east shore of Duwamish Head in 1888. A trolley car line built on trestles replaced the ferry in 1902, and connected with several streetcar lines, which eventually extended service throughout West Seattle. With improved access, West Seattle developed rapidly and was eventually annexed in 1907. However, the Puget Mill Company continued to retain ownership of this large parcel well after the surrounding areas were platted into homesites. In the summer of 1930, the West Seattle Commercial Club petitioned the City Council for a new municipal golf course in West Seattle, together with an offer of a site at 26th Avenue SW and SW Roxbury Street. Two months earlier, a second municipal golf course had opened for play beyond the northern limits of the city. Jackson Park Golf course opened on May 12, 1930 exactly fifteen years to the day after the first municipal golf course had opened at Jefferson Park on Beacon Hill. Residents of the north end had petitioned the Parks Board to develop a second facility due to the increasing popularity of the game. By the mid-1920s, there were twelve private golf courses in King County but only the one public course at Jefferson Park. The Parks Board initially rejected the idea of a third municipal course, partly due to the opposition from private golf clubs, which were beginning to experience financial difficulties due to the Depression. By 1935, all disputes had been resolved, and the City Council had appropriated $44,100 from the general fund to buy 207 acres from the Puget Mill Company. Conditions on the deed required that the city procure the assistance of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) to develop a municipal golf course. Created in 1935, the WPA consolidated and superseded several earlier programs, including the Civil Works Administration (CWA) and the Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA), both of which were established in 1933. In its first six years of existence, the WPA allocated 78% of available funds for projects involved with public works, construction and conservation of natural resources. The remaining 22% of the funds were used for a wide range of community services, including education, recreation and the arts. This was one of the largest projects completed by the WPA for the Parks Department, comprising approximately one-third of the $1.1 million allotted. In October of 1935, H. Chandler Egan of Pebble Beach, California was hired to design the course, a year before he died. The plan developed by January 1936 called for an 18-hole golf course in the level valley area and a recreation area on the wooded slope west of the fairways. This area would feature field archery, horseshoes, softball fields, tennis courts, roller hockey, a pistol range, fish ponds, a swimming pool and field house, a 3,500-seat covered grandstand on each side of a football field, a track, and a parking lot for cars. This overly ambitious scheme was well beyond the amount budgeted for golf purposes. However, WPA workers began clearing and grading land for the recreation area once they were done with the fairways. By this time, Parks Board Commissioner Archie Phelps had envisioned a different use for the wooded slope in its natural condition. He thought it would make an excellent camp for the Boy Scouts of West Seattle. Phelps stopped the development of the recreation area and enlisted the support of Superior Court Judge William G. Long in realizing this vision. In 1937, the Parks Board authorized a change in the name to the "West Seattle Golf Course and Recreation Area," and Clark Schurman, a chief guide at Mt. Rainier and Scoutmaster, was chosen to design the camp, including construction of a climbing rock. The planned stadium was relocated to the northwest corner of the site, where a garbage dump was located. The West Seattle Golf Course was officially dedicated on May 16, 1940, and was opened to the public two days later. The same year, the WPA completed construction of a maintenance, shop and storage building to serve the golf course. Two years later, the Parks Department completed a wood-frame clubhouse with financial support from local civic and community clubs. The city had not initially funded a clubhouse, and the WPA could not accept additional projects. The simple brick veneer shop building was located outside the grounds of the golf course below the eastern end of the stadium site. Built with few stylistic details, this modest vernacular building is nonetheless significant for its design and for its associations with the Works Progress Administration and the development of the West Seattle Golf Course.
 
Appearance
Completed in 1940, this one-story brick shop building occupies a site below the eastern end of the West Seattle Stadium outside the grounds of the West Seattle Golf Course. The side gable main block has a front gable wing at the eastern end of the principal south elevation, creating an L-shaped footprint. Overall, the building measures 68 feet by 43 feet on the longest sides. On the south elevation, three sliding paneled wood doors cover a large opening across the center of the main block. Single entrance doors flank this opening at either end of the main block. A large multi-paned window is situated between the center opening and the door at the western end. Half-timbered wood panels line the upper wall above the entrance doors and above the large opening. These panels may cover window openings or may simply be a decorative detail. The front gable wing has a center entrance door on the south elevation between two large multi-paned windows. The east and west elevations of the wing each have two multi-paned windows. On the east elevation of the main block, four windows line the first story below a similar window at the peak of the gable end. The rear north elevation also has three sliding doors covering a large opening at the center. A single sliding wood door covers a smaller opening near the eastern end of the elevation centered between two windows. The western end of the elevation has two additional windows. The same half-timbered wood panels line the upper wall above all four sliding doors. The west elevation has a multi-paned window at the peak of the gable end above a wide center entrance door flanked by two windows. Well-maintained, this simple yet attractive building retains excellent physical integrity.

Detail for 4470 35th AVE / Parcel ID 1324039013 / Inv # DPR102

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick, Other Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Gable Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition
Building Type: Other Plan: L-Shape
Structural System: Brick No. of Stories: one
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Community Planning/Development, Conservation, Other
Integrity
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Windows: Moderate
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
Sherwood, Don. Seattle Parks Histories, c. 1970-1981, unpublished.

Photo collection for 4470 35th AVE / Parcel ID 1324039013 / Inv # DPR102


Photo taken Nov 13, 2000

Photo taken Nov 13, 2000

Photo taken Nov 13, 2000
App v2.0.1.0