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Summary for 4150 1ST AVE / Parcel ID 6172900320 / Inv # 0

Historic Name: Pacific Metal Company Common Name: Daniel Smith Fine Art Supplies
Style: Modern - International Style Neighborhood: Duwamish
Built By: Year Built: 1947
In the opinion of the survey, this property is located in a potential historic districe (National and/or local).

Plat: Northern Pacific's 1st Ave Industrial Sites, Block: D, Lots: 9-12

The larger, somewhat less intact building, located to the south, was built for Pacific Metal Company and completed in 1947. The façade’s central entry area was originally a large service entry and has been partially altered to allow for a retail entrance. The raised parapet and window openings are original, as are the projecting concrete window surrounds and the “signage wall,” an element frequently found on 1940s and 1950s Modernist buildings. The building now houses the Daniel Smith Artists’ Materials, as the new sign on this wall indicates.

The smaller, more intact building dates from 1953. Built as an addition to the larger building and also for the Pacific Metal Company, it contained general offices for the company. It now serves as the Daniel Smith Corporate Offices in Seattle. It is typical of International Modernist architecture of the late 1940s/1950s in its use of long repetitive, rectangular forms that echo each other and its general detailing.

The properties, as indicated by the plat name, were both initially part of the “Northern Pacific’s 1st Avenue Industrial Sites.” Pacific Metal Company owned and occupied the buildings at least until the mid-1970s. By 1980, the International Sales Corporation, which dealt in the distribution of marine related goods, occupied the building.


This lot includes two buildings, located on the east side of First Avenue South, north of Diagonal Avenue South. The first northern building is the most intact. It is one story in height, with a main façade along 1st Avenue South. It has a rectangular footprint, as well as a flat roof and parapet. The façade is brick clad. It has a large glazed multi-pane opening, topped by what appears to be an original metal awning. Completing the façade, there is an entry to south, accessed by low steps. A low planter, defined by a low exterior wall, also clad in brick and with a concrete cap, runs the length of the façade and terminates at the entry area to the south. It also parallels the large glazed opening and the awning above.

The larger adjoining building has a concrete façade with a large central entry, which includes new storefront, as well as an adjoining service door. To the north of the entry area, there are two levels of long rectangular openings, each filled with a different type of replacement glazing. Each of the openings also has a generous surround, also of concrete.  A similar opening, also filled with multi-pane sash occurs at the second level on the south side of the central storefront/entry/ service entry. Here the glazing is sub-divided into eleven bays, (further subdivided into three panes in the horizontal direction and three panes in the vertical direction). This appears to be the only original glazing. Other openings include a doorway, set to the south of the entry area. It has been filled in; however the infill is recessed within the opening and a small double-hung window has been added inside the former opening. There is also regular sized glass door, set in a metal frame, to the north of the main entry area. There is still a tall partially free-standing signage wall that use to bear a sign for the “Pacific Metal Company.” The original structure includes at least three concrete exterior walls, with a fourth, which is not visible, possibly of masonry. The original interior structure was of heavy timber construction, but has been beefed up with lightweight metal trusses. The former warehouse space also still retains evidence of an earlier craneway on its interior.

Detail for 4150 1ST AVE / Parcel ID 6172900320 / Inv # 0

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick, Concrete, Other Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat with Parapet, Monitor Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition
Building Type: Industry/Processing/Extraction - Manufacturing Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Mixed No. of Stories: one
Unit Theme(s): Commerce, Manufacturing/Industry
Changes to Plan: Slight
Changes to Original Cladding: Slight
Changes to Windows: Slight
Storefront: Moderate
Major Bibliographic References
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Polk's Seattle Directories, 1890-1996.
King County Assessor Property Characteristics Report, database at --parcel locator

Photo collection for 4150 1ST AVE / Parcel ID 6172900320 / Inv # 0

Photo taken Jul 10, 2010

Photo taken Jul 10, 2010

Photo taken Jul 10, 2010
App v2.0.1.0