If this little house could tell its story, what would it say?
June 17, 2016
This is a story about a yellow house with a red roof near downtown Seattle.
It was built in 1904 and purchased a year later by Patrick & Nellie Riley.
Patrick was a hostler at Seattle Brewing & Malting Co., makers of Rainier Beer.
(Hostler = horse guy.)
From their porch, the Rileys would have seen Seattle grow up.
The city's population tripled that decade.
The Rileys' daughter Hazel was the first kid at 1643 S. King Street.
She grew up to be a candymaker.
Patrick was walking home from the store when a car hit him. He died at the scene.
Nellie never remarried.
On the eve of World War II, the house was at the heart of Japantown.
In 1939, the Shojis moved in.
Gennosuke Shoji, left, was an Episcopalian minister.
(See the little girl to the right of the chimney? She's Florence. Florence was disabled from an illness.)
The Shojis in the city directory, 1942. The next year, blank. No other Japanese either.
After the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, President Roosevelt ordered Japanese-Americans to internment camps... The Shojis included.
Their neighbor two doors down would have watched as JapanTown emptied out.
Here are the Shojis after the war.
Do you notice someone missing?
Florence is missing.
Later Almanzor Guido moved in. (Back, middle.)
He was a union cannery worker who liked to host parties.
In 1999, anarchists lived in the house, a hub for WTO protests.
(Roommates called those guys "manarchists.")
In the 2000s, the house was a safe space for queer people & people of color.
They sang LOTS of karaoke.
And then, after 40 years of activism, the house was sold.
This is their farewell photo.
The Zeichners and their baby live here now.
Kate is a nurse; Aaron works for the Gates Foundation.
Sometimes Kate thinks about the other kids from the King Street house.