Join us in support of securing city landmark status for two iconic buildings in the heart of the West Seattle Junction!
New and noteworthy:
The latest updates
- To see the March 5, 2016, press release, click here.
- To see the March 5, 2016, press conference script, click here.
Where to get “We Love The Junction” buttons
“We Love the Junction” buttons are on sale for $1 apiece at:
- Husky Deli, 4721 California Ave. S.W.
- Hotwire Online Coffeehouse, 4410 California Ave. S.W.
- Our “Birthplace of Seattle” Log House Museum, 3003 61st Ave. S.W.
(Open hours noon to 4 p.m. Thursday through Sunday)
We at the Southwest Seattle Historical Society are leading an effort to seek city landmark status for a pair of historic structures – the Campbell and Hamm buildings – in West Seattle’s primary business district, The Junction.
We invite you to partner with us as we work to preserve the historic character of The Junction for future generations.
Surveying history, with an eye to the future
In 2015, we at the Southwest Seattle Historical Society partnered with other local organizations to conduct the West Seattle Junction Historical Survey.
The survey evaluated the historical and architectural significance of 58 buildings in The Junction, interviewed building owners and surveyed 265 citizens. The survey identified several buildings that may qualify for landmark designation — two of these structures are the Campbell and Hamm buildings.
To learn more about the survey visit: www.loghousemuseum.info.
What is a city landmark?
In 1973, the city of Seattle created the Landmarks Preservation Board. To date, Seattle has designated more than 450 individual sites, buildings, vehicles, vessels, and street clocks as landmarks subject to protection by city ordinance.
To be designated by the city as a historical landmark, a building must be at least 25 years old and meet at least one of six criteria that focus on significant historic, cultural, and architectural association with the local community.
To learn more about the details of what qualifies as a city of Seattle historic landmark visit:
Why is it called ‘The Junction’?
The district got its name in 1907, when the West Seattle and Fauntleroy electric streetcar lines converged to form a junction at the intersection of California Avenue and Ninth (now Alaska) Street.
Almost overnight, businesses sprung up near the bustling crossroads, and citizens referred to the area as The Junction, with a capital “J.”
W.T. Campbell leads the way
Recognizing The Junction’s potential, real estate agent William Thomas (W.T.) Campbell set up shop on California Avenue in 1907. Within a few years, he and other boosters succeeded in transforming the area into the Duwamish peninsula’s premier business district.
Campbell—already a prominent figure in West Seattle for his local service—further cemented his place in local history by building two of The Junction’s most familiar and venerable buildings on the north corners of California and Alaska:
- The Campbell Building (1918)
- The Hamm Building (1926)
The Junction grows up
As times changed, The Junction adapted. In today’s world of mega malls and big-box stores, The Junction has a well-earned reputation for its small-town charm and friendly, neighborhood feel due to locally owned businesses and community members who understand and cherish our area’s roots.
Other notable landmark efforts in West Seattle
In 1989, we led a successful campaign to designate the Admiral Theater as a city landmark. Today, the Admiral’s historic features are intact, and this spring the building is slated to undergo a $1.2-million renovation.
Log House Museum and Fir Lodge/Alki Homestead
In 1996, as part of the acquisition of the building that became our “Birthplace of Seattle” Log House Museum, we secured landmark status for our building and the Fir Lodge/Alki Homestead.
In 2009, our historical society and other heritage groups rallied to preserve the venerable Alki Homestead when a fire threatened its future.
Today, with a new owner, the 112-year-old building is undergoing a major restoration that will preserve its historic features and allow it to reopen to the public.