I love Fred Anhalt’s stylish older apartment buildings, some of which are now condominiums, but I had never been able to find a comprehensive map of all he’s done. There are only two books about Anhalt, neither of which is in print: Lawrence Kreisman’s 33-page Apartments by Anhalt and Steve Lambert’s 160-page Built by Anhalt. Both are available at the Seattle Public Library.
Anhalt’s story is interesting: this is a man who had no formal training as an architect but was a great businessman who was able to finish a building at blistering speed — as quickly as 43 days to complete a building that still stands more than 80 years later. Sadly, for all the beauty he brought to Capitol Hill, he lost everything in the Great Depression when banks forced him to cover the difference between his outstanding mortgages and the low resale price of his buildings.
View Anhalt Buildings in Seattle in a larger map
I put together this map of Anhalt’s buildings. Anhalt got his start designing market buildings in northern neighborhoods. His first Capitol Hill contribution was the La Quinta, a Spanish-style building at 17th & Denny. From there he moved on to bricks, building more than a dozen buildings in a three-year span and culminating with 1005 (“Ten-O-Five”) and 1014 E Roy St. Anhalt described Ten-O-Five as “the best building I ever built.” The ground-floor unit, now numbered #25, was Anhalt’s central management office for all his buildings. I was surprised to learn that Anhalt’s company built the commercial building on Broadway that Hollywood Video most recently occupied.
After bouncing back from his devastating bankruptcy in 1934, Anhalt mostly did commissions off-Hill and sold plans for houses. Among his last projects was St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Laurelhurst. He also branched out into nurseries, selling flowers and peat soil to other aspiring homebuilders. His career ended with an acrimonious dispute with the city over his 5-acre peat bog in northern Seattle, after which he effectively retired from the homebuilding business.
Check out the map of Anhalt Buildings in Seattle. Please leave a comment if I’ve missed or miscategorized any of the buildings.