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Commercial Street looking north, Seattle, 1865 (MOHAI 9511)


Commercial Street looking north, Seattle, 1865 (MOHAI 9511)



Seattle was first incorporated by the Washington Territorial Legislature in 1865 with a population of 350 and an economy based on timber. This image, taken from about Main Street, looking North along Commercial Street (now First Avenue South), shows the Territorial University of Washington in the center distance, built in 1862 at a location now occupied by the Fairmont Olympic Hotel on University Street between Forth Avenue and Fifth Avenue.
According to notes on the verso of image, the first building on the left is the Seattle Hospital, opened in 1863 by David "Doc" Maynard (1808-1873) and his wife Catherine Troutman Maynard (1816-1906) on Commercial Street between Main Street and Jackson Street. The second store on the left, with the sign advertising Stoves & Tin Ware, was a general merchandise store operated by Sumner B. Hinds (1832-1870). Beyond that appear to be the buildings of Henry L. Yesler (1810-1892) and George Plummer's (1816-1902) Seattle Mill Company. Until a fire burned down the mill in 1879, Commercial Street did not run all the way through the city, but stopped at Mill Street (now Yesler Way) because south of Mill Street was owned by Maynard, who based his street grid on strict compass bearings, while the more northerly plats of Arthur A. Denny (1822-1899) and Carson D. Boren (1824-1912) had street grids that more or less followed the shoreline.
Signs in image: Stoves & Tin Ware; Livery Stable

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Caption information source:
Caption information source:
Subjects (LCTGM): Business districts--Washington (State)--Seattle; Commercial streets--Washington (State)--Seattle; Stores & shops





Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI) Seattle

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