Historical Walk & Plaques

Click on any number in the map below to see photos of the historic site along with a description and text of a historic plaque, if one has been placed on the site. This map and guide is about 11 pages long if you decide to print it. You may prefer to download and print a 10 page PDF version (668kb file) or a one page PDF version with just the map and list of the sites (19kb file)

# 1 – Shingle Mills

144 Railroad Avenue / 220 Railroad Avenue Historic Plaque (1983) – Site of Quality Mill (Big Swede) This plaque commemorates the role of the shingle mills in the history of Edmonds. The number of mills grew rapidly because of the availability of quality timber close at hand, unlimited source of water power, and good transportation. At the height of the shingle industry, mills stretched along the Edmonds waterfront. Tall stands of cedar trees crowded the shoreline and hillsides of what is now Edmonds when the first cedar shingle mill was built near this site about 1890. In later years as many as ten mills were operating along this waterfront. Early inhabitants numbering about one thousand people were mostly loggers, shingle sawyers, boom-men, kneebolters and shingle weavers who were dependent on the mills. Rail spurs served the mills and cargoes were also shipped by coastwise steamers. On this site a shingle mill was operated in 1907 locally known as the Big Swede Mill. In 1915 it became the Quality Mill. Destroyed by fire in 1921 it was rebuilt and continued production for thirty years. Receding forests and competition eventually forced its closure. In 1951 this last surviving mill was scrapped. Scattered cedar stumps may still be seen here and there around Edmonds, all that remains of this once flourishing industry.

 # 1 - Shingle Mills  1now


 July 1999

# 2 – Ferry Dock / Brackett’s Landing

Main Street and Railroad Avenue The landing site of George Brackett in 1870. Since those early days when Brackett’s family and a few other pioneer families settled in this lush forested amphitheater, it has been the heart of Edmonds. Water, rail and highways converge here. Historic Plaque (1993) Edmonds Ferry Dock From the City Dock the City of Edmonds, owned by the Joyce Brother of Mukilteo, commenced regular service to Kingston on May 16, 1923. The 56ft. auto ferry could carry 12 cars. Edmonds became a major ferry terminal with later service to Port Townsend, Port Ludlow, and Victoria.

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 Circa 1925

 July 1999

# 3 – The Wells House

120 Edmonds Street Built in 1891 by Arthur Mowatt on one of the original lots platted by George and Etta Brackett. This house is one of the oldest still standing in Edmonds and has been well cared for throughout the years. On the Washington State Historic Register

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Circa 1895

 July 1999

# 4 – The Bishop Hotel

Second and Bell Street

This grand and elegant hotel was built in 1890. Also known as the Stevens, Olympic View Hotel and Olympic View Apartments, it was torn down in 1975 to make way for the existing condominiums.

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Circa 1890

 July 1999

# 5 – Brackett’s Feed Barn / First School Site

233 Third Avenue North

The first classes of the Edmonds School District #15 were held in a feed barn owned by George Brackett. Six students attended classes here. The barn was torn down in 1964 after years of neglect. Historic Plaque (1984) Site of Brackett’s feed barn and first school in Edmonds On this site in 1884 the first Edmonds School District class was held in a feed barn owned by George Brackett, founder of Edmonds. These plaques placed here Sept. 1984 to commemorate this centennial by Edmonds-South Snohomish County Historical Society.

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Circa 1884

 July 1999

# 6 – Edmonds High School

410 4th Avenue North

The cornerstone for the new high school was laid on November 30, 1909. It served as the only high school until 1957 when the new high school was built. From then until 1975 it was the junior high. The building has been completely remodeled and now serves as the Edmonds Center for the Arts.

Historic Plaque (1990) Site of first Edmonds High School (Puget Sound Christian College)

The original Edmonds High School was built on this site in October 1909 on land donated by George Brackett. The building was enlarged in 1938. In 1957 the High School was moved and the Edmonds Junior High School occupied the building until 1975. The Puget Sound Christian College purchased the building in 1977.

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Circa 1910

 July 1999

# 6a – The Thompson House

216 4th Avenue North

Built in 1904 and originally located at 203 4th Avenue North, this house is a classic example of the late Victorian style home. It was moved to its current location in 1996 by Darrell Marmion to save it from demolition. It is currently being restored in preperation for its100th birthday.

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Circa 1905

 July 1999


# 7 – First Baptist Church

4th and Bell Street

The Baptist Church is the oldest church remaining in downtown Edmonds. Built in 1909 on donated land at 6th and Hebe Way, it was moved to its present site in 1929. This beautiful little church is a wonderful example of architecture typically found in New England.

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Circa 1905

 July 1999


# 8 – Chestnut House

115 3rd Avenue North

Built in the late 1890’s by Peter Becklund, this historic house has had many owners. Throughout its life it has been lovingly maintained and is a handsome building in our downtown.

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Circa 1905

 July 1999


# 9 – Fourth and Main Building

Southwest corner of 4th Avenue and Main Street

Really three buildings, this historic block has been the site of three major businesses. On the east end, the first Bank of Edmonds was built in 1907. The west end was built by W.A. Schumacher in 1890 and sold to E. Heberlein in 1908 where he moved his already established hardware business. In 1907 the Bank contracted for a new building between, to be occupied by William Kingdon’s general merchandise store, now serving as Rosa Mundi’s Antiques. Historic Plaque (1988) Site of first bank in Edmonds. December 1904 marked the organization of the Bank Of Edmonds to serve the needs of the community. It became the State Bank of Edmonds in 1907 and occupied this building, one of the first permanent buildings built in Edmonds. The State Bank of Edmonds was acquired by the National Bank of Commerce in 1946 and later was relocated.

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circa 1907
July 1999


# 10 – Beeson Building

Main Street between 4th and 5th Avenue

This all concrete structure was built by F.R. Beeson in 1909 after a fire had leveled the entire block. It was the biggest permanent building in town at that time. A large apartment upstairs was home to Mr. and Mrs. Beeson after moving out of their home just around the corner on the north side of Main Street. Their home is now the Beeson House Antiques, 118 4th Avenue North.

Historic Plaque (1999) Beeson Building

In 1911 Mr. Florance R. Beeson erected this concrete building, later owned by his son Hugh. Though damaged, it survived a fire that destroyed neighboring structures on April 11, 1928. The city’s first true office building, it has housed restaurants, a drug store, a furniture company, a dance hall and medical offices. Both Beesons were business and community leaders.

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circa 1907
July 1999


# 11 – Leyda Building

5th and Main Street

Built by former Edmonds Mayor Fred Fortner in 1924, the multi-retail complex with upstairs apartments has been a cornerstone of downtown businesses. Dewey and Cecelia Leyda bought the building in the mid-1940’s and completed a major facelift project in 1985 through an Edmonds Main Streets program for downtown renovation.




Circa 1924

 July 1999


# 12 – Methodist Church Site

130 5th Avenue S.

The Hughes Memorial Methodist Church stood on this corner for 37 years before it was demolished in 1961 to make way for a drugstore and supermarket. Unique in its Spanish mission architecture, the congregation included many of Edmonds pioneer families.

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Circa 1924

 July 1999


# 13 – Yost Garage (Old Milltown)

Dayton and 5th Avenue

Allen Yost started the first automobile agency in Edmonds, a Ford agency housed in this building which he built in 1913. Yost Garage housed the Suburban Transportation System, serving Richmond Beach and Seattle. In 1973 the Yost Garage was remodeled into this arcade of shops while still preserving much of the original interior.

Historic Plaque (1995)

“In 1913-1914, Allen M. Yost and his sons brought Edmonds into the automobile era constructing a one-story concrete building for the Yost Auto Company garage. Other Yost enterprises included a stage line, Ford and Buick agencies, bus manufacturing, and a water company. With additions, this became one of Edmonds’ most notable buildings, crucial to town activities. In 1973 it became the Old Milltown shopping complex.”

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Circa 1913

 July 1999


# 14 – Edmonds Opera House (Masonic Temple)

515 Dayton Street

Built on the site of the old Socialist Hall, the Opera House offered public dances, productions of early melodramas, traveling theater productions and served as a bowling alley and motion picture house. It was sold to the Masonic Lodge #165 in 1944.

Historic Plaque (1989) Sie of Opera House (Masonic Hall)

The Edmonds Opera House was built by Allen M. Yost and dedicated on Christmas night 1909. This building was also used at various times as an auditorium, movie house, roller skating rink, basketball court, dance floor, bowling alley and banquet hall. The building was purchased by the Masonic Lodge in 1944 when major improvements were made. Dedication as a Masonic Temple was April 1, 1950.

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Circa 1910

 July 1999


# 15 – First Congregational Church (American Legion Hall)

601 Dayton Street

The first organized church in Edmonds, this edifice was built in 1888 and served the congregation until sold to the Frank Freese Post of the American Legion. The steeple was removed, and there is some debate as to whether the building was rotated a quarter turn. The church parsonage at 610 Dayton Street was built in 1902 and is now privately owned.

Historic Plaque (1986) Site of first church in Edmonds

On this site, 6th and Dayton streets, the Edmonds Congregational Church was built in 1889 under the direction of its first pastor the Rev. O.L. Fowler. Many church members and other citizens contributed to the building of this first church. In succeeding years it was the center for religious as well as social activities. In 1930 the American Legion, Frank Freese Post No. 66, purchased the property and building as it no longer was being used. The building committee comprised E.R. Scott, Rev. W.J. Hindley and George W. Post.

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Circa 1905

 July 1999