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Summary for 1749 S COLUMBIAN WAY S / Parcel ID 0001800081 / Inv # 0

Historic Name: Common Name:
Style: Spanish - Eclectic Neighborhood: Beacon Hill
Built By: Year Built: 1961

This house is significant due to its architectural style and intactness, as well as its occupancy history. The occupants’ professional association with Boeing reflects the Rainier Valley’s historical role as a transportation and commercial corridor connecting the residential neighborhoods in South Seattle to downtown and Seattle’s industrial districts.

This single family residence is located in Beacon Hill and was constructed in 1961 by Philip J. and Rachel M. Covello for an estimated cost of $14,000. Philip was an employee at Boeing, and Rachel Covello remains the current owner of the property.

Substantial residential and commercial development in Beacon Hill occurred when a transportation corridor connecting the Rainier Valley to Downtown Seattle and Seattle’s industrial district was constructed along Rainier Avenue. Development in the valley was facilitated by logging during the 1880s, the operation of the Rainier Valley Electric Railway in the 1890s, and the Jackson and Dearborn Street re-grades in the 1900s. Milling was the primary commercial industry during the last part of the nineteenth century although some agricultural activity existed. As residential development increased, Rainier Avenue gradually became the principal commercial corridor connecting the residential neighborhoods of South Seattle to downtown, the International District, and Seattle’s industrial districts. World War II brought additional building growth related to the wartime industry, as well as the influx of defense workers to nearby Boeing and the Duwamish shipyards. 

Beacon Hill has historically been a more economically and socially diverse neighborhood than Mount Baker to its east. There was less enforcement of residential deed restrictions and a greater availability of smaller, more affordable housing. One of the first land owners of Beacon Hill was George Riley, an African American from Portland, Oregon. George Riley, organizer of the Workingmen’s Joint Stock Association in Portland, arranged the organization’s purchase of property on Beacon Hill, which was platted in 1871 as Riley’s Addition. Furthermore, the northern end of Rainier Valley, which was originally settled by German immigrants, acquired the historical nickname “Garlic Gulch” during the early twentieth century due to the growing strength and predominance of its Italian American community. 

Beacon Hill’s diverse beginnings were reinforced by its landscape features, including Jefferson Park located at the center of Beacon Hill. Originally named Beacon Hill Park, Jefferson Park has exerted a profoundly positive influence on the development and social cohesion of the Beacon Hill neighborhood through its sustained use by local residents. Originally acquired by the City of Seattle in 1898, it was integrated into Seattle’s Olmsted system of parks. In 1915, the first public golf course west of the Mississippi opened at Jefferson Park. From 1919 to 1941, the year before many Japanese Americans were interned in the Northwest, the Japanese-American Language School in Seattle used the park for its annual picnics. Japanese Golf Association held annual tournaments beginning in 1931. African Americans, Japanese Americans, and Chinese Americans organized golf clubs during the 1940s and 1950s because they were excluded from white clubs; they used Jefferson Park as their home course.

The Jefferson Park community center and golf course remains open to the public and the Beacon Hill neighborhood continues to be an ethnically diverse, working-class community. Its businesses and public spaces, including Jefferson Park and Dr. Jose Rizal Park, reinforce this diversity.


The lot for this single-family residence is located near the intersection of South Columbian Way and South Angeline Street and was platted for Collins #46. Constructed in 1961, this Spanish-influenced house faces northeast onto South Columbian Way. It is one story with 2,900 square feet of living space, a square floor plan, and an open courtyard at the center. The poured concrete foundation supports a platform-framed superstructure, and the hipped roof has a wide, boxed-eaves overhang. The entryway is formed by a cut-out in the square floor plan, and the eaves overhang covers the front door. The roof system is covered in red clay tiles and is interrupted at the eaves-line by two chimneys, one abutting the east elevation and a second abutting the west elevation. Most windows are wide, horizontal aluminum casement windows. The noteworthy features of this Spanish-inspired house remain intact, including its courtyard, roof treatment, cladding, and windows. The house signifies the historical increase in development in Beacon Hill during the 1950s and 1960s and functions as a character-defining house for the neighborhood.


Detail for 1749 S COLUMBIAN WAY S / Parcel ID 0001800081 / Inv # 0

Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick - Roman Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Hip, Varied roof lines Roof Material(s): Clay Tile
Building Type: Domestic - Single Family Plan: Square
Structural System: Balloon Frame/Platform Frame No. of Stories: one
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Windows: Intact
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Changes to Interior: Unknown
Major Bibliographic References
Shaping Seattle Architecture: A Historical Guide to the Architects. Jeffrey Karl Ochsner, ed. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1994.
Dorpat, Paul, “101 The Railroad Avenue Elevated,” Seattle, Now and Then, Seattle: Tartu Publications, 1984.
Bagley, Clarence B. History of Seattle, Washington. Chicago: S.J. Clarke, 1916.
Berner, Richard. Seattle 1921-1940: From Boom to Bust. Seattle: Charles Press, 1992.

Photo collection for 1749 S COLUMBIAN WAY S / Parcel ID 0001800081 / Inv # 0

Photo taken Jan 07, 2010

Photo taken Jan 07, 2010

Photo taken Jan 07, 2010

Photo taken Jan 07, 2010

Photo taken Jan 07, 2010

Photo taken Jan 07, 2010

Photo taken Jan 07, 2010
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