In the late 1950s, Seattle’s civic and business leaders were worried about the city losing its dominant position as a trading partner with the lucrative Pacific Rim nations. Interested in showing off all that the city and state had to offer in the hope of gaining new business, their unlikely solution was a world’s fair, the first to be held in the United States since 1940. Other cities across the nation also competed for the honor, but Seattle surprised them all with a thoughtful and well-financed plan that would forever increase the world’s awareness of the “Emerald City.” More than nine million visitors came to enjoy the soaring Space Needle, the futuristic monorail, and the dozens of colorful pavilions at the fair.
Seattle's growth from a small lumber town to one of the world's most influential urban centers has been spectacular. Little more than a century ago, the city was made up of dirt roads and timber buildings. The arrival of the Great Northern Railroad in 1893 and the start of the Klondike gold rush in 1897 changed all that. By 1914, just twenty-five years after the city suffered a devastating fire that burned the central business district to cinders, Seattle would have been almost unrecognizable to its early inhabitants. Streets had been raised, canals had been dug, and hills had been leveled, with the spoils going to create land out of the Elliott Bay mudflats. And the Smith Tower--the tallest building west of the Mississippi at the time--stood as a symbol of Seattle's new economic confidence. Businesses in Seattle are still booming today, but they are now less dependent on location and more on inspiration. The Boeing Company was founded here in 1916 and is still a major regional employer, but it is Amazon.com, Starbucks, and a host of software and biotechnology companies that represent the new face of twenty-first-century business. Seattle Then and Now presents archival photos along with modern views of the same sites as they appear today. One can see the city as it looked when Denny Hill still rose above downtown, when the University of Washington occupied a mere city block, when Duwamish canoes still put in at Ballast Island, and when missiles were based in Magnolia and naval aircraft at Sand Point. Thanks to the efforts of preservationists, places like Pioneer Square and the Pike Place Market look much as they did a century ago, while structures such as Union Station and the Eagles Auditorium live on with new uses. This book highlights some of the best-loved places in the city along with striking examples of modern architecture that help make Seattle such a vibrant and innovative city. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.Visit product page →
Space Needle: The Spirit of Seattle, an illuminating new book about Seattle's iconic Space Needle, was released on the 50th Anniversary of the Space Needle. Extensively researched and written by Knute Skip Berger, it provides a detailed account of the Space Needle's conception, funding, and construction 50 years ago, as well as it's important role in the Century 21 Worlds Fair in 1962 and how it helped define contemporary Seattle in the 50 years after the fair. Berger, columnist for Seattle Magazine and the on-line Seattle news source Crosscut, was named Writer-in-Residence at the Space Needle and has used the opportunity to interview a broad spectrum of people who were associated with the construction, design, and management of the Space Needle and to dive deep into Space Needle archives and collections for here-to-for untold stories about the storybook structure. With over 210 images, both historical and contemporary, this 184 page coffee table book features the best of the classic images of the Space Needle, as well newly discovered images.Visit product page →