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Summary for 707 17th AVE / Parcel ID 1336800350 / Inv #

Historic Name: Leigh, Charles P. and Belle, House Common Name:
Style: American Foursquare Neighborhood: Capitol Hill
Built By: Year Built: 1905
In the opinion of the survey, this property appears to meet the criteria of the Seattle Landmarks Preservation Ordinance.
In the opinion of the survey, this property is located in a potential historic districe (National and/or local).
This Foursquare was designed in 1905 by A. W. Spalding for Charles P. Leigh of the Leigh Lumber and Manufacturing Company, and his wife Belle. It was noted as significant in the city’s 1979 historic resources survey. It is particularly notable for the unusual pattern of its windows and the curved bay. Capitol Hill has the city’s greatest concentration of American Foursquares--often called the Classic Box or Seattle Box, because of its local popularity. They were built primarily between 1905 and 1910. There are typically eight main rooms on two floors--living room, hall, dining room and kitchen downstairs and four bedrooms upstairs. Two reasons for the popularity of the form were that it provided a large amount of space for reasonable cost, and that it could easily be personalized, as this one was, for varying tastes and budgets. The architect, A. Walter Spalding, was born in Massachusetts and practiced in St. Louis, Minneapolis and Idaho before arriving in Seattle in 1901. This house was designed after he completed the Hofius House on First Hill (now the residence of the Catholic Archbishop) and shortly before his work on the Robert Moran House (now Rosario Resort). He later entered a partnership with Max Umbrecht (1908-11), and became a contractor in 1912. This block is within the original Capitol Hill of James A. Moore, who gave the area its name. In 1900 Moore, who had already developed other Seattle neighborhoods, purchased and began platting 160 acres, roughly between 11th and 20th avenues, from Roy Street north to Galer. Before selling lots for construction, he graded and paved the streets (eliminating the dust that plagued many sections), installed sidewalks, water mains and sewer lines, and planned for street lights and telephone poles. Lots went on sale in 1901, heavily promoted to attract local business leaders as residents. The response was immediate. The quality infrastructure, convenient transportation, schools and other amenities proved to be very popular and the area was largely developed, with sizable, attractive houses, within only a few years.
This shingle-clad Foursquare has a hipped roof with gabled dormers on the front and sides. The roof has deep eaves with Italianate brackets, plus four large carved brackets at equal intervals along the façade. The projecting porch covers the center of the first floor, with a hipped bracketed roof supported by two groups of three Ionic columns; attached columns flank the doorway. Above the porch is a three-sided bay with a 16-light window flanked by two 12-light windows. On the front, each floor has two large windows with a hexagonal pattern in the upper sash. Smaller windows on the side elevations have a similar pattern. Each side has a three-sided shed roof bay on the first floor. A balustrade that extends across the front of the house appears to not be original.

Detail for 707 17th AVE / Parcel ID 1336800350 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Shingle Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Hip Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition-Shingle
Building Type: Domestic - Single Family Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Balloon Frame/Platform Frame No. of Stories: two & ½
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Changes to Windows: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
Williams, Jacqueline B. The Hill with a Future: Seattle's Capitol Hill 1900-1946. Seattle: CPK Ink, 2001.
Shaping Seattle Architecture: A Historical Guide to the Architects. Jeffrey Karl Ochsner, ed. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1994.
King County Tax Assessor Records, ca. 1932-1972.
City of Seattle, Department of Planning and Development, Microfilm Records.

Photo collection for 707 17th AVE / Parcel ID 1336800350 / Inv #

Photo taken Dec 06, 2006
App v2.0.1.0