Structure Type: built works - industrial buildings - factories

Designers: [unspecified]

Dates: constructed 1888

Kirkland, WA

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Kirk, a steel mill owner in Workington, England, migrated to the U.S. looking for a better location (and market) to open another factory. He came to what became kirkland, WA, and developed friendships with wealthy local residents, including Leigh S.J. Hunt, the owner of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer newspaper. With Hunt, he started the Kirkland Land and Improvement Company, a real estate/development firm that built roads, houses, stores and offices for potential workers of a large projected steel mill located on the Lake Washington waterfront. Efforts to open the mill were stymied by the Northern Pacific Railway Company which refused to build track to supply the factory. Because of this, Kirk had difficulty siting his mill; the Panic of 1893 caused investment capital to dry up, killing Kirk's dream of making Kirkland a steel-producing center of the West. Despite this failure, he did retain significant real estate holdings, and spent his last years sub-dividing and developing his land.

PCAD id: 12336