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Summary for 213 S Main ST S / Parcel ID 5247800880 / Inv #

Historic Name: Cascade Laundry/ Sportcraft Knitting Company/ Cannery Workers ILWU Local 37 Union Building/ Longshore Union Hall Common Name: Old Cannery Building/ The Old Cannery Workers ILWU Local 37 Union Building
Style: Queen Anne - Richardsonian Romanesque, French - French Renaissance Neighborhood: Pioneer Square
Built By: Year Built: 1900
In the opinion of the survey, this property is located in a potential historic districe (National and/or local).
The original building was designed by E. W. Houghton in 1900. In fact, the original building was three stories high with a basement. The builder was Spurr and Silber and the original owner, the Cascade Laundry. The Cascade Laundry occupied the building until at least 1909 and a laundry was still the main occupant of the building, according to a 1912 Baist map of Seattle. By 1928-1929, the Second Avenue Extension, an important public works project, cut a huge swath from Yesler Way to past Jackson Street, near the train terminals, obliterating the remains of the earliest Chinatown and slicing into buildings in its path. The Extension sliced the site on this building in such a way as to destroy its original east facing façade, which explains the great difference between the two primary facades. The building also lost its upper floors, sometime between 1949 to 1951, after being damaged by the 1949 Earthquake, with only a vestige of its three story eastern wall remaining. Despite these various destructive forces, the building retains important architectural elements which contribute to the district as a whole. The Main Street façade was designed by E. W. Houghton, an important Seattle architect who contributed to the rebuilding of Seattle right after the Fire of 1889 as one of the partners of the firm Saunders and Houghton. Edwin Houghton was born in Hampshire, England in 1856 and came from a family of quantity surveyors and architects. He was apprenticed in the London architectural office of Thomas Houghton, his brother and in Chelsea. Before arriving in Seattle in September 1889, he worked as a farmer outside of El Paso, Texas; then opened an independent architectural practice in Pasadena, California. He moved with his family to Port Townsend, Washington in early 1889. Some of the early Saunders and Houghton projects were the now demolished Washington Territory Investment Company (1889-90) and Terry-Denny Building, both of which exhibit a combination of Victorian composition and Richardsonian Romanesque. The office was also responsible for the more restrained, but elegant Bailey Building, designed for William Elder Bailey, and now called the Broderick Building. Saunders and Houghton also designed the Olympic Block, once located on the corner of Yesler and First Avenue South, which collapsed famously and dramatically in 1972. The Saunders and Houghton Partnership dissolved in around 1891, when Houghton established an independent practice. A well-known and extant building from roughly the same period as 213 2nd Avenue Extension is the Moore Theater (1903-1905) in Downtown Seattle. This building is significant as a work of E. W. Houghton, but also directly reflects the Second Avenue Extension of 1928-29, which had a far-reaching effect on an important portion of what became the Pioneer Square-Skid Road National Historic District. In this case, the effect is dramatically shown in the difference between two architecturally interesting facades, markedly different from each other. In addition, the building also reflects the effects of the 1949 Earthquake, which seems to have had a particularly dramatic effect on buildings in the general vicinity of this building, particularly along Second Avenue. Subsequently the building was occupied by the Cannery Workers of ILWU Local 37. On June 1, 1981, Silme Domingo and Gene Viernes of Local 37, who were trying to reform the conditions for cannery workers and also had actively opposed President Marcos of the Philippines, were gunned down in this building.
This is a one story building with two primary facades, one on Main Street and the other facing Second Avenue Extension. It has a trapezoidal plan, with the Main Street elevation at 77 feet, the Second Avenue elevation at 70 feet, the south wall at 120 feet and the west alley wall at 60 feet. The Main Street elevation consists of five bays defined by brick piers with rusticated cast stone bases and capitals, which have been painted. In between the piers are the multi-panes transoms of storefronts, now covered over by plywood. Each transom is divided into two sections by a mullion and there are twenty lights in each section. The Second Avenue Extension primary façade differs markedly from the Main Street one. Its exterior cladding is rug brick, in a variety of colors. It is divided into three bays. The central bay has a wide segmental arch in cast stone or very weathered terra cotta with a transom below it divided into five sections with multiple panes. Below the transom, the storefront is boarded up. To each side of the central bay, are trabeated openings also with multi-pane transoms and with the lower portion corresponding to the storefront also boarded up. There are decorative cast stone or weathered terra cotta panels above the three openings. For instance, the central spandrel includes a decorative shield with Imperial crown and symmetrically placed floral motifs. To each side of this ensemble are stylized ewer shapes with more floral motifs to each side. The back alley wall has segmental openings, most of which have been filled in. Also of note, is a vestige of several stories of a higher portion of the building, adjoining the Mottman building to the south.

Detail for 213 S Main ST S / Parcel ID 5247800880 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status: NR, LR
Cladding(s): Brick, Stone - Cast Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat with Parapet Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition, Unknown
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Business Plan: Irregular
Structural System: Masonry - Unreinforced No. of Stories: one
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Commerce, Community Planning/Development
Changes to Original Cladding: Slight
Changes to Plan: Moderate
Changes to Windows: Moderate
Major Bibliographic References
Andrews, Mildred et al. Pioneer Square: Seattle's Oldest Neighborhood. Manuscript. Seattle and London: University of Washington Press, forthcoming 2005.
Ochsner, Jeffrey and Dennis Andersen. Distant Corner: Seattle Architects and The Legacy of H. H. Richardson. Seattle and London: University of Washington Press, 2004.
Chin, Doug. Seattle’s International District: The Making of a Pan-Asian American Community. Seattle: International Examiner Press, 2001.
Baist, William. Baist’s Real Estate Atlas of Surveys of Seattle, Wash. Philadelphia: W. G. Baist, 1905, 1908 and 1912.
Lentz, Florence. “Apex Building, 200-201 S. Washington Street, Historic Certification Application, Part 1.” 24 August 2003.

Photo collection for 213 S Main ST S / Parcel ID 5247800880 / Inv #

Photo taken Jun 09, 2004

Photo taken Jun 09, 2004
App v2.0.1.0