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Summary for 558 1st AVE / Parcel ID 7666206865 / Inv #

Historic Name: E. N. Fobes Building/ Westinghouse Electric Supply Company Common Name: 558 1st Avenue South
Style: Commercial Neighborhood: Pioneer Square
Built By: Year Built: 1904
In the opinion of the survey, this property is located in a potential historic districe (National and/or local).
This historically significant property was completed in 1904, during the early part of the decade, 1900-1910, when both the district and Seattle experienced explosive economic and physical growth. It was during this time that the old planked First Avenue and the adjacent tidelands were filled to facilitate industrial expansion and new transportation systems. This building is one of the earliest masonry structures to be built this far south. Seattle Security Company, also responsible for the “mammoth warehouse” at 508-534 First Avenue (now the Florentine Apartments) later in 1909, commissioned builder David Dow to construct it for the Carstens’ Packing Company and related cold storage. The upper three floors were used for cold storage, while beef and pork packing took place in the basement. Several other packing companies were located in the district. The building currently houses Nordic Cold Storage. The builder, David Dow, was a prominent contractor and Seattle citizen between the 1890s and his death in the 1920s. He is described in Clarence Bagley’s History of King County and came from a family of well-known Seattle contractors, which included his sons, Andrew and Dwight, as well as his brother Matthew. He was also the contractor for the “mammoth warehouse” at 548 First Avenue South, in addition to buildings all over Seattle.
548 First Avenue South is a four story building with exterior brick walls and a rectangular floor plan. It has frontage on First Avenue South and on Occidental Avenue South. Both elevations exhibit a two-part vertical block façade composition. Both have or had wide trabeated openings on the first level, with storefronts on the First Avenue façade and delivery door openings on the back elevation on Occidental Avenue South. Above the first level, facades are divided into four equal bays with double-hung windows grouped in sets of four at each level. Raised brick surrounds frame and accentuate each window. On the First Avenue South elevation, the ground floor storefronts have been filled in for several years, with only the transom still visible as a continuous ribbon window, but most detailing, particularly on the upper floors of both facades seems to be intact.

Detail for 558 1st AVE / Parcel ID 7666206865 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status: NR, LR
Cladding(s): Brick, Concrete Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat with Parapet Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition, Unknown
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Warehouse Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Masonry - Unreinforced No. of Stories: four
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Commerce, Transportation
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Windows: Intact
Storefront: Extensive
Changes to Original Cladding: Slight
Major Bibliographic References
King County Tax Assessor Records, ca. 1932-1972.
City of Seattle, Department of Development and Planning (formerly DCLU), Microfilm records.
Bagley, Clarence. History of King County. Chicago: S. J. Clarke, 1929.
Krafft, Katheryn Hills, “Pioneer Square – Skid Road Historic District (Boundary Increase),” submitted 15 December, 1987 and approved 6 May, 1988.

Photo collection for 558 1st AVE / Parcel ID 7666206865 / Inv #

Photo taken Apr 22, 2004
App v2.0.1.0