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Summary for 1603 BOYER AVE / Parcel ID 359300-0023 / Inv # 0

Historic Name: Harmer Residence Common Name: 50 Morrison Residence
Style: Tudor Neighborhood: Montlake
Built By: Year Built: 1926
This is a generally intact Tudor Revival house, built in 1926. It is associated with 1920s-era development in the Montlake area and is a contributing resource to the Montlake NRHP Historic District. The earliest known owners, in 1928, were William H. Harmer, a salesman for White Co., and his wife, Myrtle. They owned the home through the 1940s. By 1958, the house was owned by Wesley L. Hunner, an Assistant Professor and chief lab technician at UW, and his wife, Marion.  

Montlake is generally described as extending from the Washington Park Arboretum west to Portage Bay/15th Avenue E., and from the Montlake Cut on the north to Interlaken Park. The area is a significant and cohesive collection of residential architecture typical of early 20th century Seattle and is eligible as a NRHP historic district under Criterion C.  Construction occurred primarily between 1910 and 1940, with a variety of Craftsman and  revival styles ranging from modest cottages and builder's houses to high-style architect-designed residences, impressive institutional buildings, and notable parks and natural features.  There are few intrusions of newer buildings.  In the early 1960s, construction of SR 520 and the unfinished R.H. Thomson Expressway bisected Montlake, but the neighborhood retains its basic integrity as a pre-World War II Seattle neighborhood.  

Montlake was incorporated into the City of Seattle in 1891.  Although the first  plats (Union City 1st and 2nd additions) were filed by Harvey Pike in 1869-1871, development did not really begin until plats were filed by John Boyer (Interlaken, 1905) and H. S. Turner (1907). Montlake Park (north of SR 520) was platted in 1909 by the developers James Corner and Calvin and William Hagan.  With the 1909 Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition came a streetcar line on 24th Avenue E. and an impetus for development. In 1916, the Lake Washington Ship Canal was completed and the Montlake Bridge linked the neighborhood to the university area in 1925. A small commercial district grew along the car line.

The 1903 Olmsted Parks and Boulevards Plan of 1903 surrounded Montlake with parks.  Montlake Boulevard (then call University Boulevard) connected Lake Washington Boulevard to the A-Y-P grounds.  Washington Park, the eastern boundary, was acquired by the City in 1900 and developed as an arboretum in 1936-41. At the southern edge is steep, forested Interlaken Park and boulevard.

By 1915, the neighborhood had developed enough to require a temporary school building; the permanent structure opened in 1924.Soon afterwards came a playfield and shelter house (1933-36) and a library (1944, replaced 2006). Other noteworthy structures include the Seattle Yacht Club (1920), the NOAA Northwest Fisheries Center (1931), the Museum of History and Industry (1952) and St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church (1962).

Major Bibliographic References:

King County Tax Assessor Records, 1937-2014.  

Becker, Paula.  Seattle Neighborhoods: Montlake--Thumbnail History.  HistoryLink File # 10170, accessed 12/2/2013.

Gould, James W. Montlake History.

Polk directories of Seattle, 1938-1958.

Smith, Eugene. Montlake: An Urban Eden, A History of the Montlake Community in Seattle. La Grande OR: Oak Street Press, 2004.

This wood-shingle clad Tudor Revival house sits above the street on a corner lot, with a rockery, small trees,  numerous shrubs and concrete stairs. It has a gable-and-wing form with a cross-gabled roof. The entry, at the northwest corner, faces west and has a gabled roof supported by two square posts. A small shed dormer adjoins the west side of the prominent steep front gable.  A group of four 8-light leaded casement windows with shutters is on the first floor. The gable end above has a group of three similar windows.  Adjoining the entry and in the shed dormer are six-light leaded casements.  The  basement garage is in the rear, facing east; it has decorative hinged double doors beneath a shallow hipped roof. Above the garage, on the first floor, is a group of four leaded glass windows like those on the main façade; the second floor has a group of three similar windows.  The rear elevation has a 15-light leaded glass window at the corner near the exterior red brick chimney. Two decks have been added on the rear, one on the first floor and a narrow one with French doors at the second floor.  

Detail for 1603 BOYER AVE / Parcel ID 359300-0023 / Inv # 0

Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Gable Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition-Shingle
Building Type: Domestic - Single Family Plan: Irregular
Structural System: Balloon Frame/Platform Frame No. of Stories: one & ½
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture
Changes to Plan: Slight
Changes to Interior: Unknown
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Changes to Windows: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
King County Assessor Property Characteristics Report, database at --parcel locator

Photo collection for 1603 BOYER AVE / Parcel ID 359300-0023 / Inv # 0

Photo taken Jan 31, 2014
App v2.0.1.0