“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Port Townsend in Jefferson County, Washington — The American West (Northwest)

Kuhn Building


Kuhn Building Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By J. J. Prats, May 19, 2015
1. Kuhn Building Marker
Inscription.  Begun in 1892 by Port Townsend pioneer Joseph A. Kuhn, this building represented the latest ideas of the time in architecture. Construction was directed by Jonas Guise, then the best known contractor in the area. Bricks came from the yards of Eisenbeis & Tucker near Point Wilson.

Port Townsend’s boom days were already on the wane when construction began. Although work was hurried along until four stories were roughed in, financial unrest in the U.S. economy halted the project in 1893.

Since that time, the building has housed tenants as diverse as automobile dealerships (Whippet, Chrysler), tire stores, a bowling alley, and, in its leanest times, thousands of pigeons. (There is a claim the building made Ripley’s Believe It or Not as the world’s largest pigeon coop.) In 1928, a Seattle consortium announced plans to spend $250,000 to convert the building into an apartment-hotel, to meet the housing challenge presented by the arrival of workers for the new Crown Zellerbach mill, but financial difficulties interfered once again.

The two top floors were removed in the mid 1940’s; the bricks were barged out to Port
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Townsend Bay and thrown overboard.

The building was acquired by Barney and Judy Sabo in 1979 and restoration began.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: ArchitectureNotable Buildings. A significant historical year for this entry is 1892.
Location. 48° 6.823′ N, 122° 45.501′ W. Marker is in Port Townsend, Washington, in Jefferson County. Marker is on Water Street near Polk Street, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Port Townsend WA 98368, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Water (a few steps from this marker); Early Cabin (within shouting distance of this marker); Site of Port Townsend's First Settlers' Cabin (within shouting distance of this marker); The Belmont (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Citizens Independent Telephone Company (about 500 feet away); Bell Tower (about 500 feet away); Union Wharf (about 500 feet away); Railroad (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Port Townsend.
Regarding Kuhn Building. Building is in the Port Townsend Historic District, which is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Kuhn Building and Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By J. J. Prats, May 19, 2015
2. Kuhn Building and Marker
Marker is on the column to the right of the green trash can.
Credits. This page was last revised on October 14, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 7, 2015, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 678 times since then and 121 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on December 7, 2015, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.

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Jun. 21, 2024