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Catalog Number WF 6050.A,B
Caption Wallie Funk [Jr] @ Semar Bldg demolition 1999
Description Wallie V Funk [Jr] and his unstopable camera recording the demolition of the Semar building, located at 501 Q Avenue. The Semar building, built in 1891 for $6,000 held many businesses throughout its years. According to the ANACORTES AMERICAN article written by Wallie Funk, November 13, 1996, "It was erected in 1891 by John Semar after he purchased the property on which it was eventually built from David Wilson, and had as original ground-floor tenants a ladies dress shop, ... and in the neighboring store front a tobacconist held forth, but his tenancy appears to have been a brief one. ..."
"Upstairs rooms and suites were rented out to realtors, lawyers and doctors, with several spaces serving as apartments, which catered to a volatile clientele that gave the Q Street "house" a bit of a name for fleshy indulgences.
The Semar Block's architect was J. C. Jepsen, who had a hand in the designing of several of Anacortes' foremost buildings and most prominent homes. Contractors were Long and Merrit, other early members of the city's building force who were attracted here by word ricocheting up and down the Sound that Anacortes was where the action was.
In the late 1890s and early 1900s the upstairs floor of the Semar Building became the location of the city's first hospital which, in 1905, was a 12-bed facility and boasted the earliest sealed-off operating room in Anacortes.
By 1913-1914 the West Coast Creamery became a long-time fixture in the street-level building and operated there until the mid-1950s when Russ Hibler purchased the structure ... and continued to operate it as a metal repair and tool shop on the ground floor.
In the early 1990s buyer Ron Rennebohm came along with plans for an extensive remodel and as perhaps a display-storage area for antique and vintage cars.
In 1987 the Semar Building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. Because of poor bricks that it was built of, demolition was February 19,1999.
Date 1999
Collection Wallie Funk Collection
Subjects Event
Credit line Donated by Wallie Funk, Wallie Funk Collection
People FUNK, Wallie Valentine [Jr.]
Place Anacortes, WA
Search Terms demolition
Semar Building
Semar Block
Object Name Print, Photographic, copy