See 333 Westlake Ave N. [Pande Cameron Building – Durant-Star Co./Dunn Motors Showroom] for Westlake Avenue N. – Historic Context Statement.
This noteworthy loft and warehouse building is directly associated with 1920s era auto-row developmental history of Westlake Avenue. It was specifically designed by a Seattle architecture firm (Beezer Brothers) and built for Adolph J. Eberharter to function for “garage” purposes. It was constructed per Building Permit #178630 (issued April 10, 1919) and a set of seven architectural drawings that are retained within the DPD Microfilm Library records.
Adolph J. Eberharter was born c.1887 in Pennsylvania and was residing with his parents in Pittsburg by 1900. He was recorded in the U.S. Census as a hotel manager residing in Seattle in both 1920 and 1940, but he is known to have operated Eberharters’ Garage at this location until c.1935. Initially, he charged $5 a month to store cars as well as provided automobile repair services and sold oil and gasoline. Eventually, he also sold used cars through newspaper advertisements. The impact of the opening of the George Washington Memorial Bridge (Aurora Bridge) prompted him to build six warehouse/office buildings in the northern part of Denny Regrade; and, a Seattle Times article (12-13-1931, p. 22) indicated that he was planning to build two more.
A few of these warehouse buildings have been identified. They were all built toward the end of the 1920s and during the early 1930s. These buildings, which were either designed as warehouses or store/office buildings often housed businesses that sold industrial products. They include: 513 Dexter Avenue North (1928, slated for demolition), 430 Dexter Avenue North (1928), 400-410 Dexter Avenue North (1930, destroyed), 228 Dexter Avenue North (1933) and possibly 522 Dexter Avenue North (1928) and 509 Dexter Avenue North (1930). Several of these modest brick masonry buildings were designed by architect W. R. Grant for A. J. Eberharter. Mr. Eberharter died January 9, 1955.
In 1932, as Mr. Eberharter had entered into real estate development and management, the former garage/warehouse building became the location of Hemphill Diesel Engineering School, when it relocated from its prior location at 5th Avenue and Bell Street. Mr. Ralph Hemphill was the president and general manager of this training institution, which also operated branches in Los Angeles, Denver and Vancouver BC. By 1940 a gold mining company appears to have been located in the building and then various enterprises including a wholesale beverage company and a tent and awning manufacturing company. By 1945 Meduna Machine Works (operated by John F. Meduna) was housed at this address and the building was in Mr. Meduna ownership. Since 1970, it has housed Antique Liquidators.
Beezer Brothers biographical information: The Beezer Bros. arrived in Seattle from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in mid-1907 and quickly established an architectural practice and commenced an extensive regional practice for that era. Between 1909 and the late 1920s, they undertook projects in Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, and California. In addition to designing buildings they typically provided construction management for most of their projects. The firm principals were Pennsylvania-born twins - Louis Beezer (1869-1929) and Michael J. Beezer (1869-1933). Louis initially worked in the construction business and then studied architecture in Pittsburgh, after which he began to practice architecture in Pittsburg and was joined by his brother in 1892. By 1900, the firm is known to have designed churches and private residences. Known Seattle projects include: Colman Dock (1908 destroyed; Homer L. Hillman house (1908-09); Leary Building, later the Insurance Building (1906-08; destroyed), an apartment building for Mr. and Mrs. John B. Beltinck (1908-09). The Beezer Brothers were best known for their many banks and various buildings designed for the local Roman Catholic Diocese and other religious orders including Immaculate Conception School (1909-10), Cathedral School (1911-12), Immaculate Conception rectory (1910-14), and Our Lady of Monte Virgini Church (1915), the Dominican Priory of the Blessed Sacrament (1909-25), Saint Joseph Church rectory (1919-21) and Saint Joseph's School (1922-23). Important regional projects include the Baker-Boyer Bank building, Walla Walla (1909-11) and design work for the Mary Ann Larrabee Memorial Presbyterian Church, Deer Lodge, Montana (1914-16), After World War I, the Beezer Brothers were working increasingly outside of Seattle. Their last major work in Seattle was Herzl Congregation Synagogue (1924-25; altered). With the commission for Saint Dominic's Roman Catholic Church, San Francisco, California (1923-29), Louis Beezer established a branch office in San Francisco, where he died on January 2, 1929. Work of this branch office also included the Church of the Blessed Sacrament, Hollywood (1926-29), projected to be the second largest church on the West Coast. (Credit: David Rash, Shaping Seattle Architecture, 2014.)