Home Page
Link to Seattle Department of Neighborhoods home page

Seattle Historical Sites

New Search

Summary for 1800 NE 47TH ST NE / Parcel ID 8823901640 / Inv # 0

Historic Name: Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity Common Name: Delta Kappa Epsilon Fraternity
Style: Tudor Neighborhood: University
Built By: Year Built: 1929
In the opinion of the survey, this property is located in a potential historic districe (National and/or local).
This two-and-a-half story brick-faced fraternity building was designed by prominent Seattle architect Lionel Pries and built for the Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity in 1929. It is designed in a Collegiate Gothic style, similar to many other fraternity and sorority buildings at the University of Washington. The 1915 campus plan prepared by Seattle architect Carl F. Gould called for Collegiate Gothic style buildings on the University of Washington campus. Lionel H. (Spike) Pries was a professor of Architecture at the University of Washington from 1932 until 1958, and he practiced architecture in Seattle from 1928 until his death in 1968. At the time he designed this building, Pries was working as a part-time instructor of architecture at the university. Pries was an inventive designer but is best known as an educator.
Today's Delta Kappa Epsilon Fraternity house occupies a prominent corner site at the intersection of 18th Avenue NE and NE 47th Street, one block from campus. The relatively traditional building reflects the Collegiate Gothic style found on the University of Washington Campus. The building is two and a half-stories on its eastern wing and above the entrance. The central entrance features cast sandstone door surround with ornament, including a shield and tower, in the Collegiate Gothic idiom above. There are plain unfluted cast sandstone columns on both sides of the door. The building steps down to a one-and-one-half story building to the west, and is only slightly more than one story on its western end. Most of the windows have been replaced but are a reasonable match for the original multi-paned windows. There is some new cladding on the dormers. There is a large external brick chimney on the south end of the eastern wing, and a similar massive interior chimney in the west wing, before it steps down to its lowest level. On the gable ends, there is decorative brickwork in a stepped pattern along the roofline. The gable end on the east elevation has wide horizontal wood siding on its upper level, which is probably not original. The overall plan of the building has changed very little. The large landscaped courtyard contributes to the overall character of the building and its relationship to the site. There is a brick wall around the site on 18th Avenue NE and NE 47th Street. The brick steps appear to be relatively new and include the address "1800 NE 47th Street" in colored mosaic tiles. Some alterations were made to the building in 1957 and in 1976-1978, when the basement and first floor interiors were remodeled. The basement windows are new. The building is connected by a skybridge at the second floor level to a wood frame Craftsman-style residential building to the north.

Detail for 1800 NE 47TH ST NE / Parcel ID 8823901640 / Inv # 0

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Gable Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition
Building Type: Domestic - Institutional Housing Plan: L-Shape
Structural System: Balloon Frame/Platform Frame No. of Stories: two & ½
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Social Movements & Organizations
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Windows: Slight
Major Bibliographic References
City of Seattle DCLU Microfilm Records.
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.
Divoky, Andrea. Notes on University of Washington Fraternities and Sororities, compiled in 1997 and updated in 2002.

Photo collection for 1800 NE 47TH ST NE / Parcel ID 8823901640 / Inv # 0

Photo taken Jan 27, 2002

Photo taken Oct 01, 2014
App v2.0.1.0