Home Page
Link to Seattle Department of Neighborhoods home page

Seattle Historical Sites

New Search

Summary for 410 4th AVE / Parcel ID 0942001120 / Inv #

Historic Name: Crouley Building / Reynolds Hotel Common Name:
Style: Beaux Arts - American Renaissance Neighborhood: Commercial Core
Built By: Year Built: 1910
In the opinion of the survey, this property appears to meet the criteria of the Seattle Landmarks Preservation Ordinance.
This property is directly associated with the initial period (1902-1920) of downtown commercial expansion that occurred due to local economic prosperity after the Klondike Gold Rush and in tandem with explosive population growth and suburban residential development. During this era, modern urban architectural scale began with the construction of the earliest steel-frame highrise buildings and the establishment of a concentration of banking enterprises and department stores along Second Avenue from Cherry Street to Pike Street. The initial regrading of Denny Hill and the commercial redevelopment of the former University Grounds (University/Metropolitan Tract) were major factors that facilitated northward and eastward commercial expansion. In 1914, the owners of the Frederick and Nelson Department Store purchased property with the intention of building a large, five-story store at Fifth Avenue and Pine Street, thus solidifying the location of the future downtown retail core. A significant number of extant commercial properties dating from this era remain within the downtown commercial core, including: numerous hotels, several business blocks and early highrise commercial buildings, as well as specialty and department stores, apartment houses and theaters. The concept of the modern hotel that would include private rooms, toilet and bathing facilities, public spaces and related guest services, originated in the early nineteenth century. By 1853, the settlement community of Seattle included its first hotel, the Felker House. By the later part of the nineteenth century, Seattle - like cities throughout the United States - included a significant number of hotels that served a wide variety of business travelers, tourists and both permanent and semi-permanent residents. By the late 1880s several elegant hotels as well as workingmen’s hotels were clustered along the west side of First Avenue between Cherry and Columbia – in proximity to the original railway passenger depot. Urban hotels, lodging and apartment buildings all closely resembled commercial office buildings in the 1880s and 1890s; it was not until the 1920s that hotel design became distinctly different in exterior appearance. Early hotel development was clearly stimulated by improvements in railroad service that brought immigrants and drew tourists and entrepreneurs. Prior to the fire of 1889, the Occidental – Seattle Hotel (1864, 1887 & 1889, destroyed), was the city’s premier tourist-oriented hotel, although there were numerous other hotels located within the commercial district. At least a dozen hotels were destroyed in the great fire of 1889; however, within four years some 63 hotels were in operation. By the turn of the century, tourist and residential hotels lined the west side of First Avenue to Pike Street. Based on the number of hotels that were operating in Seattle by 1900, it is certain that they mostly catered to long-term residents rather than temporary visitors. Many buildings that were identified as hotels actually functioned as lodging houses or apartment hotels. During the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, hotel living was particularly common especially in the developing cities of the American West. Hotels varied significantly in size and accommodations provided and served every economic level from those of wealth to recent immigrants and transient salesmen and laborers. Given the tremendous population growth in Seattle after 1902, hotels and lodging houses played an important role in absorbing a new and largely transient populous. Family-style hotels were designed to include suites of rooms that would be used by individuals who needed especially comfortable long-term accommodations for their relocated families or those who traveled regularly but maintained a principal residence elsewhere. While large resort or tourist-oriented hotels are noteworthy, the great majority of hotel buildings built after 1900 and prior to the 1920s were much more modest operations. A particularly significance boom in hotel development occurred between 1906 and 1910 in conjunction with local economic opportunities and population growth as well as the opening of the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific (AYP) Exposition of 1909 that drew some 3.7 million visitors. By 1910, Polk’s Directory included over 475 hotel listings. Particularly noteworthy family-style and luxury hotels constructed during this era include: the 12-story Savoy Hotel (1906, destroyed) on Second Avenue near University Street; the New Washington Hotel (Josephinum, 1908) and the Moore Hotel and Theater (1907), both built after the initial regrade of Denny Hill; and the Frye Hotel (1910) at Yesler Way and Third Avenue located near the new passenger railway facilities at Jackson Street. Such well-appointed hotels would typically include comfortable lobby areas, restaurants, event and meeting rooms, and provide special housekeeping, laundry and meal services for their guests. Other extant tourist-oriented and residential hotels constructed in the expanding commercial district during this era include: the Millburn Hotel (1902, altered); Sterling Hotel (1903, altered); Irwin Hotel (Green Tortoise Hostel, 1905, destroyed); Kingsbury Hotel (Glen Hotel, 1907); Raleigh/Imperial Hotel (1907, altered); Riopath Hotel (1908, altered); Shirley Hotel (1908, altered); Elliott Hotel (Hahn Building, 1908); Oxford Hotel (1909); Madrona Hotel (1909); Hotel Larned (1909); Nelson Hotel (Commodore,1909); Archibald Hotel (St. Regis, 1909); Hotel Afton (Atwood Hotel, 1910); Calhoun Hotel (Palladian, 1910); Crouley Building/Reynolds Hotel (1910); and the Governor/Rector Hotel (St. Charles, 1911). During the 1920s, a second boom in major hotel development occurred at which time several luxury hotels and large apartment hotels were built in the downtown commercial district. The national economic collapse brought on by the Great Depression during the 1930s brought downtown real estate development to a virtual halt. Old hotel buildings in Pioneer Square as well as those lining First Avenue and near the Pike Place Market provided cheap housing and services for an increasingly transient and displaced low-income population, a pattern that continued into the late 1960s. A tragic fire in 1970 prompted revisions to the city’s fire code and new fire safety measures forced the closure of many residential hotels and displaced thousands of low-income residents and service providers. As a result many of the older residential hotels were either demolished or remained vacant and unused for many years. The Crouley Building was built in 1910 at a cost of $75,000. The six-story brick hotel building was constructed by contractors Whiting and Forrestal. Originally built as a hostelry and called the Crouley Hotel, the building contained 125 rooms and all the embellishments and amenities of a modern, first-class hotel. The building later became commonly known as the Reynolds Hotel. It functioned for many years as a hotel before being used for offices and for its present use as a work release facility. The building was designed by the prominent local architecture firm of Wilcox and Sayward. W.R.B. Wilcox, was a Vermont native who trained in Chicago and observed the late nineteenth-century works of Richardson, Root, and Sullivan. Wilcox is better known for the majority of his work that was completed elsewhere than Washington State. After forming a partnership with William J. Sayward, who had previously worked with McKim, Mead, and White, the firm designed over one hundred buildings in northern New England. The Carnegie Public Library in Burlington, Vermont is one of the firm’s well-known New England buildings. The development boom in the early 1900s lured Wilcox and Sayward to Seattle in 1907. Wilcox and Sayward Northwest practice included a majority of residential works and later expanded to include larger private and public commissions such as the Dr. J. Warren Richardson Residence (1909-10) a Prairie School-inspired house featured in Homes and Gardens of the Pacific Coast, Volume 1: Seattle, the Firmin Michel Roast Beef Corporation’s temporary Casino (1909, destroyed) on the grounds of the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition, the arched viaduct and footbridge over Lake Washington Boulevard in the Arboretum (1910-11), and the Queen Anne Boulevard retaining walls (1913), known as the Wilcox walls. Sayward returned to the East Coast in 1912, ending the partnership. Wilcox remained in the Northwest, having success as an architect, AIA activist, and later as an educator. He helped to establish an architectural degree program at the University of Washington, served two terms as president of the Seattle chapter of the AIA, and worked to pass the Bogue plan in 1912. He went on to teach at the University of Oregon, after leaving Seattle in 1922. This is a generally intact example of a common downtown hotel property type from this era. It is a noteworthy example of hotel design influenced by the Beaux Arts style and is architecturally distinctive in comparison with other extant like properties. Furthermore it is associated with an important Seattle architect, W.R.B. Wilcox. [This property may potentially meet local landmark criteria.]
Located mid-block on the east side of Fourth Avenue between the Yesler Way viaduct and Jefferson Street, this six-story building was designed and constructed to serve as a 125-room hotel. It now functions as a residential work-release facility. It measures 60’ x 111’ with an irregular E-shaped plan from the 2nd to the 6th floor levels to allow for two light wells oriented south and a narrow light well along the northern elevation. It exhibits a distinctive two-part vertical block façade composition and Beaux Arts style design elements. The storefront level has been significantly altered. The ordinary masonry structure includes a concrete basement and foundation and is clad with red brick laid in Flemish bond, cast stone and terra cotta ornament. The two-story base is distinguished by a series of five segmental arched window openings with keystones at the second floor level. The window openings are trimmed with wide cast stone and terra cotta surrounds and separated by terra cotta and brick inlaid panels. The shaft is dominated by individually set rectangular window openings with cast stone sills. The third floor level openings include distinctive cast stone and terra cotta voussoir heads and the fourth floor level openings have a single terra cotta keystone. A simple continuous cast stone sill with terra cotta brackets runs below the sixth floor level windows. The building cap is accentuated by ornamental brick panels located between all of the sixth floor windows openings. Above each panel are terra cotta scrolls and brackets supporting a denticulated cornice. The parapet is further decorated with cast stone and brick panels that correspond with structural bays between window openings. Side walls are common brick punctuated by segmental arched window openings. A prominent ornate terra cotta and cast stone entry bay with rusticated cladding and Classical-inspired entablature head remains in place at the northern end of the base. However, the remainder of the storefront level has been significantly remodeled and altered. All of the original 1/1 double-hung wooden windows have been replaced with modern anodized aluminum window units. There do not appear to be any intact or architecturally significant interior building features, finishes or public spaces.

Detail for 410 4th AVE / Parcel ID 0942001120 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick - Flemish Bond Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat with Parapet Roof Material(s): Unknown
Building Type: Domestic - Hotel Plan: E-Shaped
Structural System: Masonry - Unreinforced No. of Stories: six
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Commerce
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Changes to Windows: Intact
Changes to Plan: Intact
Storefront: Extensive
Changes to Interior: Unknown
Major Bibliographic References
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Ochsner, Jeffrey Karl, ed. Shaping Seattle Architecture, A Historical Guide to the Architects. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1994.
"Modern Brick Structure that Followed Fourth Avenue Regrade" Seattle P.I., May 5, 1910.
Seattle Inventory Field Form, Office of Urban Conservation, 1979.

Photo collection for 410 4th AVE / Parcel ID 0942001120 / Inv #

Photo taken May 17, 2006

Photo taken
App v2.0.1.0