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.
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.
According to the King County Office of the Assessor, this craftsman house was built in 1906. By 1910, Geo Stratton and his wife Susan Stratton and son Guy Stratton lived in the house. Geo served as the Ballard Chief of Police in 1906; he had been promoted by Mayor J Wiley from a night patrolman to the Chief of Police.
Guy C. Stratton, secretary-treasurer of the Acme Shingle Mill, was the defendant in a well-publicized trial with events lasting from 1909-1911. Stratton ran over a child, Henrietta Margaret Johnson, in his motorcar in 1908 and he was charged with manslaughter. News of the trial was covered by the Seattle Daily News. Stratton was found guilty manslaughter with a fine $500 and 1-20 years of jail time. His sentence was commuted and his sentence reduced to $300. He did not pay the fine immediately and his tardiness and requests for extension were documented in the Seattle Daily News.
By 1920 Lott Geddis and his wife Maude had moved into the house with their children Lottie, Theodore, Dorothy, Claude and Leslie. Lott worked as a millman at a shingle mill and he died in 1921. Maude Geddis remained in the house until her death in 1935 when her daughter Lottie and her husband Oscar Hagbo took over ownership of the house. Oscar worked as a laborer for a utility and eventually worked for Sound Transit, and Lottie worked as a packer for a food company.
In 1942, the house was bought by Leta L Berg. Alex Beldeck bought the house in 1957 for $10,950 and lived there with his wife Dorothy Beldeck and their daughter Susan Beldeck until at least 1960.
From 1991-2003, the house was owned by Greg Corbitt and Patricia Hedrick. They bought the house from John K. and Ragnhild Eidem but it is unclear how long they had owned the house.
Polk City Directories
King County Department of Assessments
US Census 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940
Seattle Times (12/2/1906, 1/27/1908, 5/15/1908, 10/18/1911, 10/19/1935)
Puget Sound Regional Archives