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Summary for 4901 Rainier AVE / Parcel ID 1702901750 / Inv #

Historic Name: Tradewell Common Name:
Style: Vernacular Neighborhood: Columbia City
Built By: Year Built: 1905
This one story brick commercial block constructed in 1905 by H. Harlow A. Hastings an attorney and early resident of Columbia City. Hastings had practiced law in Seattle since his arrival in 1890 and was for many years a partner with the firm of Hastings and Stedman. He resided at 3929 S. Angeline Street in Columbia City and served terms as town attorney and mayor prior to Columbia City’s annexation by Seattle in 1907. Hastings built the subject building as a speculative investment. He owned a number of properties in the Columbia City area. The subject building stands on the southwest corner of the intersection of Rainier Avenue S. and S. Ferdinand Street, which was the central intersection in the Columbia City business district. It has contained a number of businesses over the years. The north storefront contained the Columbia Drug Store, owned by W. J. Studley prior to 1916. The Columbia Station Post Office was located there for a period and the Nutting and Helleckson Grocery. The southernmost storefront was occupied by Green’s Dry Goods Store (1911), Goebel’s Cash Grocery (1918) and the Redwood Grocery (1922). During the 1930s the Tradewell Market occupied the entire building. In the 1950s, Betty Swehla ran a popular diner out of the southernmost storefront. The subject building has been altered several times over the years. In 1938 a marquee was added to the building. The façade was covered with stucco shortly thereafter. The building has lost its architectural integrity, but is historically significant for its long existence on a significant corner and its construction by H. Harlow A. Hastings, a central figure in Columbia City’s early development.
This altered single story commercial vernacular building is of masonry construction and is supported by a concrete foundation. The building is clad in stucco on solid brick. A large marquee, which wraps around to the north side elevation, was added in 1938. Two stucco clad piers separate the three storefronts. The storefronts consist of metal-framed expansive glass windows and doors. The storefronts were renovated in 1958; the building originally had two storefronts with wood framed windows and doors, transom windows and wood piers.

Detail for 4901 Rainier AVE / Parcel ID 1702901750 / Inv #

Status: No - Altered
Classication: Building District Status: NR, LR
Cladding(s): Brick, Stucco Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Business Plan: Irregular
Structural System: No. of Stories:
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Commerce
Storefront: Moderate
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Original Cladding: Moderate
Changes to Windows: Moderate
Major Bibliographic References
City of Seattle DCLU Microfilm Records.
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Polk's Seattle Directories, 1890-1996.
“Cake and Coffee (No Candles Please) and Many Happy Returns for Pioneer,” Seattle Times, 5/15/1969, page 37.
Hawthorne, Julian ed. History of Washington, The Evergreen State, From Early Dawn to Daylight, Vol.1, pg. 600, American Historical Publishing Co., New York, 1893.
Centennial History, Columbia City, Rainier Valley, 1853-1991, Pioneers of Columbia City. Seattle, Washington, 1992.

Photo collection for 4901 Rainier AVE / Parcel ID 1702901750 / Inv #

Photo taken Mar 22, 2004
App v2.0.1.0