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Summary for 1608 4th AVE / Parcel ID 423290-2100 / Inv #

Historic Name: Pacific States Telephone & Telegraph Common Name: Queen Anne Masonic Center
Style: Colonial - Georgian Revival, Vernacular Neighborhood: Queen Anne
Built By: Year Built: 1905
In the opinion of the survey, this property appears to meet the criteria of the National Register of Historic Places.
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).
While altered with the installation of aluminum windows, this building is historically significant both as Queen Anne’s first telephone exchange building and as the local Masonic hall, an important social gathering place for many years. This simple building was constructed in 1905 by the Pacific States Telephone and Telegraph Company. By 1890, all of Seattle had telepone service, provided by competing companies. Eight such buildings were built in the city by 1916. This was used as a local exchange until approximately 1925, when a larger building (still standing) was constructed nearby. At that time the Masons, known for their community service activities, acquired the building for their meeting hall. The Queen Anne Masonic Lodge had evolved in 1920 from a group of men who met informally at Queen Anne Florist's greenhouse and was formally established in 1921. The building, with a commercial kitchen and large halls on each floor, is still used by the Masons and is available for rental. The extent of alterations at the time the Masons first occupied the building is not known. The building may have been largely an empty shell when the telephone equipment was removed. Some interior alterations have been made since, including the kitchen (1949), excavation of a larger basement (1960), and stairs to the basement (1961). In 1992 the exterior stairs were replaced. A ramp with pipe rail has also been added to access the front door. The most significant change has been the replacement of all windows with aluminum sash, which considerably alters the building’s appearance.
This simple two-story flat-roofed building is of concrete construction with a prominent dentilled cornice as its main feature. Deep reveals on the first floor of the front elevation provide a strong horizontal element, emphasized by the wide belt course below the second floor windows. A narrower course runs above the windows. The two side elevations are plain, with no cornice or belt courses. The entry in the center has a simple flat hood sheltering the stoop, which is accessed by three concrete stairs and a ramp, with pipe railings. Two windows flank the entry. The second floor has three large windows in the center, flanked by smaller openings that are now filled in. Windows throughout are new aluminum sash; most are fixed pane and some have operable lower sections. In the rear, on the alley, are wood doors to the first floor and to the basement, a wood deck with stairs at each end, and several boarded-up windows. A metal exit stair on the second floor runs across the rear of the building, around the corner and reaching the ground on the north side. On the north elevation, the three second-floor windows are closed with metal exterior shutters; the five on the first floor are boarded up.

Detail for 1608 4th AVE / Parcel ID 423290-2100 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick, Concrete Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat Roof Material(s): Unknown
Building Type: Other Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Concrete - Poured No. of Stories: two
Unit Theme(s): Communications, Social Movements & Organizations
Changes to Plan: Slight
Changes to Original Cladding: Slight
Changes to Windows: Extensive
Major Bibliographic References
City of Seattle DCLU Microfilm Records.
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Reinartz, Kay F. Queen Anne: Community on the Hill. Seattle: Queen Anne Historical Society, 1993.

Photo collection for 1608 4th AVE / Parcel ID 423290-2100 / Inv #

Photo taken Aug 16, 2004
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