Want to hear something really scary? Without your financial support, CHS as we know it is DOOMED. Halloween is the last day of our push to 800 subscribers. We are far short of the goal but if you would like to continue to enjoy CHS without the DREADED SUBSCRIBER WALL AND HAVING TO LOGIN EVERY TIME, you still have time to SUBSCRIBE and HELP!!!!! us continue providing community news to everybody. Happy Hilloween!
Wanna hear another scary story? Let’s visit 1633 Boylston — today’s Buena Vista apartments. For now, it remains one of the Hill’s oldest apartment buildings. In the winter of 1911, it became the home for two of the more tragic figures in Capitol Hill history — the Williamson Sisters:
While visiting Victoria BC, they read an advertisement for Linda’s book in a Seattle newspaper. Although there was no indication that either of them was sick, they decided to go and take the fasting cure. In February of 1911, they visited Linda at her office and were told that the sanitarium wasn’t ready yet, but that she would treat them in Seattle. The sisters were put up at the Buena Vista Apartments at 1633 Boylston on Capitol Hill.
Under Dr. Linda Burfield Hazzard’s, um, care, the sisters were starved from February into April inside the Boylston Ave building, according to Stalking Seattle:
They survived mostly on a thin vegetable broth. Linda would show up regularly to provide the enemas and massages. She also began to make inquiries about the sisters’ business affairs, and offered to store the women’s diamond rings and real estate deeds in her office safe. (How nice)
Dr. Linda’s fasting diet is now a legendarily macabre tale from the annals of quack medicine and a descent into some of the darker corner’s of Capitol Hill’s mortuary past:
Prosecuting attorneys would later suspect that Hazzard had starved the British sisters in order to strip them of their wealth (Claire, weak and skeletal, had signed over her bank accounts to Hazzard shortly before her death.) Worse, the body lying before Conway on the fourth floor of E. R. Butterworth and Sons, beautifully preserved as it was—What was it with these Americans and their obsession with pickling the dead?—was not Claire. At least it didn’t look like Claire. The sisters’ uncle, a Brit and also unaccustomed to embalmed corpses, didn’t recognize his niece either.
Enjoy your Hilloween candy. Oh, and subscribe to CHS… while you still have time.