Residential Ballard is generally described as extending from the 8th Avenue NW to the east and the bluff to the west, and from NW 85th Street on the north to NW 65th Street to the south. The area primarily contains single family houses, but also includes a collection of mutli-family dwellings, commercial buildings, schools, churches, and other buildings. Most of the historic buildings in Ballard are modest cottages and builder's houses, and were not architect-designed. Building styles include, but are not limited to, Victorian (primarily Queen Anne), vernacular, Craftsman, American Foursquare, Colonial Revival (including variations), Tudor Revival, Minimal Traditional, and Ranch. The historic building fabric of Ballard is threatened by a rapid pace of development.
The City of Ballard was incorporated in 1890. It was the first community to incorporate after Washington achieved statehood in 1889. Although population increased rapidly, north Ballard was still relatively rural. In 1907, primarily due to lack of adequate water for its population of 15,000, Ballard citizens voted to be annexed to Seattle to ensure a good water supply for the area.
After annexation Ballard’s street names were changed to conform to Seattle’s: Ship Street turned into 65th Street, Main Street became 15th Avenue. During the Great Depression and World War II, construction in Ballard nearly ground to a halt, with the exception of some houses built by Earl F. Mench. However, following World War II, fueled by the G.I. bill and the rise of the automobile, Ballard boomed again, and new housing followed. In recent years, the demand for new housing has spurred a tremendous amount of change in Ballard, with old, modest houses being replaced by large box houses and multi-family units. These changes threaten to alter the character and feeling of this historic neighborhood.
The brick Tudor house at 3310 NW 80th was built in 1929 by Oscar & Freda M. Peterson, the
house's first residents. As reported in a 1931 article in the Seattle Times, a building permit was
issued to Oscar Peterson to construct a house and garage valued at $5,000. Oscar was the
president of Peterson Hardware & Plumbing, 5311 Ballard Avenue & 2217 Market. In 1934 he
also opened Washington Plumbing Supply Co at 5248 Shilshole Avenue. His photo is included in
a 1930 Seattle Times ad "Builders of Greater Seattle" under the caption of president of
Peterson Hardware Co.
The next owner (1951-69) was Dwight S. & Dorothy Hawley, owner of Hawley Insurance, 2208
Market. It is undetermined who owned the house between 1945-50. William H. & Kathryn
Pratt were the next owners (1970-79). He was an agent at Royal Globe Insurance. John & Alice
Ordway owned the house for 38 years, from 1975-2013. The Ordway Family Trust then sold the
house in 2013 to the current owners, Terry L. Miller & Debra S. Shank. The house is currently
undergoing a major remodel.
Ballard Historical Society Classic Home Tour guides.
Crowley, Walt. Seattle Neighborhoods: Ballard--Thumbnail History. HistoryLink File # 983, accessed 6/1/16.
King County Tax Assessor Records, 1937-2014.
McAlester, Virginia Savage.
A Field Guide to American Houses (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Alfred A> Knopf Press, 2013.
Oschsner, Jeffrey Karl
Shaping Seattle Architecture: A Historical Guide to the Architects. Seattle, WA: University of
Washington Press, 1994.
Passport to Ballard: The Centennial Story. Seattle, WA: Ballard News Tribune, 1988.