Home Page
Link to Seattle Department of Neighborhoods home page

Seattle Historical Sites

This application will be offline for Maintenance Saturday Feb 4th from 6am to noon

New Search

Summary for 725 14th AVE / Parcel ID 1346300085 / Inv #

Historic Name: Skinner, David E., House Common Name:
Style: Colonial - Colonial Revival Neighborhood: Capitol Hill
Built By: Year Built: 1905
In the opinion of the survey, this property is located in a potential historic districe (National and/or local).
This imposing house was built in 1905 for Rev. Edward Lincoln Smith, pastor of Pilgrim Congregational Church on Broadway, who purchased eight lots, going through to 13th Avenue E. However, it was purchased within a few years by David E. Skinner, one of the Northwest’s major industrialists. The architect was W.W. Sabin, from Cleveland, Ohio. Its circular portico was noted in Homes and Gardens of the Pacific Coast; this has been removed, replaced by a smaller rectangular one. The book also called the large expanse of surrounding land important to the colonial concept. The house originally sat on six lots, going through the block to 13th Avenue E., where there is an elegant garage designed in 1912 by Carl Gould. This is now in separate ownership, with a modern house built atop it. The house was a rooming house for some time, but has now been renovated. David Skinner, who had come to Seattle from Michigan in 1906, was head of the Port Blakely Mill Company and the Skinner & Eddy shipyard, a major factor in Seattle’s World War I industrialization. He was also a director of the Metropolitan Building Company, which developed the University of Washington’s Metropolitan Tract; the Skinner Building, site of the Fifth Avenue Theater, is named for him. This stretch of 14th Avenue East was an appropriate location for Eckstein’s home, as it was known as Millionaires' Row, an “Avenue of Mansions” with the homes of many of Seattle's early business leaders. At that time, the street had a spectacular view, thanks to clearcutting, and it was a logical place to build after the west slope and First Hill were developed. The Olmsted Plan recommended that this be a parkway, forming a grand entrance to Volunteer Park. However, the property owners were given control of the street between Prospect and Roy streets. A median strip in the center was planted with shrubs, and each owner added street trees, creating the appearance of an avenue. It became a showplace, attracting dignitaries such as President Harding and busloads of tourists en route to the park. It was the main route for funeral processions going through the park to Lakeview Cemetery, north of the park. To deter the stream of traffic, an ornate gateway was built at Roy Street. But by 1924 traffic had become so bad that property owners petitioned the Park Department to take back control of the street. The gate and the median plantings were removed as a traffic hazard.
This large (8500 square feet) house is in the Colonial Revival style, with a side gabled form and a gabled center bay with a flat-roofed portico. Cladding is wood shingles, but with quoins to give it the look of brick, a more traditional material for this style. The center bay has a three-part window topped by an expansive arch with a shell motif. Windows are eight-over-one or one-over-one double hung. The north façade has a two-story gabled wing, shorter than the main volume. The south façade has a flat-roofed two-story bay; the original balustrade on top has been removed. The landscaping and front wall are recent additions.

Detail for 725 14th AVE / Parcel ID 1346300085 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Shingle 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: two & ½
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Manufacturing/Industry
Changes to Plan: Moderate
Changes to Windows: Slight
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
Calvert, Frank. Homes and Gardens of the Pacific Coast. Vol. 1, Seattle. Beaux Arts Village: Beaux Arts Society Publishers, 1913.
King County Tax Assessor Records, ca. 1932-1972.
Hines, Neal O. Denny's Knoll. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1980.
Swope, Caroline T. Classic Houses of Seattle: High Style to Vernacular 1870-1950. Portland OR: Timber Press, 1905.

Photo collection for 725 14th AVE / Parcel ID 1346300085 / Inv #

Photo taken Mar 07, 2006
App v2.0.1.0