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Summary for 314 W Galer W / Parcel ID 4232903345 / Inv #

Historic Name: Brett/Helm House Common Name:
Style: American Foursquare Neighborhood: Queen Anne
Built By: Year Built: 1902
In the opinion of the survey, this property appears to meet the criteria of the Seattle Landmarks Preservation Ordinance.
The Brett/Helm House foursquare house was constructed in 1903. John and Mary Brett were both born in 1859 - John in Minnesota to parents from Great Britain and Mary in Illinois to German immigrants. When they arrived in Seattle in 1900 the couple had been married for 21 years. Stetson & Post Mill Company hired John Brett as a sash and door man. Stetson & Post, one of Seattle's largest sawmills, employed 140 men in 1906. In late summer 1902, at about the time that Stetson & Post promoted him to foreman, Brett decided to try building and selling homes to the influx of new arrivals to Seattle. He purchased some platted lots along West Galer Street and started building the 2-story Brett/Helm house at 314 W. Galer Street. The Seattle Building Department issued Emil Kriegel a building permit on September 12, 1902 (#16192). Emil Kriegel, a carpenter and house mover, arrived in Seattle just after the 1889 Seattle Fire. This was one of the last houses he built in Seattle. Kriegel completed the house by the end of 1902. When the house was habitable, John and wife Mary moved from their Bell Town residence into 314 W. Galer. In the Fall of 1903, Brett started constructing a house at the other end of the same block. When he finished constructing 320 W. Galer the Bretts moved into it but continued owning 314 W. Galer. For about a year Brett rented the Brett/Helm house to physician Charles A. Morgan. By the end of 1906, Brett sold the house to Louis C. and Ellen Helm. German born Louis Helm (b. ca 1843) immigrated to the United States in 1852. By the 1880s he had married to Ellen and lived in Wisconsin. In 1902 the Helm family moved to Seattle and took up residence in Queen Anne. Louis Helm worked for the Seattle and Alaska Fish Company, first as an accountant and later promoted to manager. When the Helms purchased the Brett/Helm House they were living just three blocks away. They resided in the house into the 1930s. Their daughter, Francis Boardman (b. ca 1880) inherited the house and lived there till the end of the 1930s with her husband Alfred, who worked for Boeing Airplane Company. By the end of the 1940s Elizabeth Stenstrom acquired the house and owned it through the 1960s.
The American Foursquare Brett/Helm House has a hip dormer on the south elevation and bay windows on the south and west elevations. The glass enclosure was removed from the south elevation porch. A rear addition was added to the north elevation in 1929 (Permit #283171).

Detail for 314 W Galer W / Parcel ID 4232903345 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Wood - Clapboard Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Hip Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition
Building Type: Domestic - Single Family Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Balloon Frame/Platform Frame No. of Stories: two
Unit Theme(s):
Changes to Windows: Intact
Changes to Plan: Slight
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
City of Seattle DCLU Microfilm Records.
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Polk's Seattle Directories, 1890-1996.

Photo collection for 314 W Galer W / Parcel ID 4232903345 / Inv #

Photo taken Feb 28, 2005
App v2.0.1.0