AKA: University of Washington, Seattle (UW), Observatory, Jacobsen, Theodor, Seattle, WA

Structure Type: built works - public buildings - schools - university buildings

Designers: Saunders, Charles Willard, Architect (firm); Charles Willard Saunders (architect)

Dates: constructed 1895

2 stories

4324 Memorial Way NE
University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98105

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The first University of Washington campus, located in what became known as the Metropolitan Tract in Downtown Seattle, also contained an observatory, nearby to the main Administration Building. When the campus moved to the new Montlake site in the early-mid-1890s, an observatory was built nearby to Denny Hall, the new administrative and classroom center.

Building History

Seattle architect Charles Willard Saunders (1857-1935) designed the University of Washington (UW) Observatory contemporaneously with the first building on the new University of Washington Lake Washington Campus, Denny Hall (1894-1895); according to the UW Libraries' Special Collections page "No Finer Site: The University of Washington's Early Years On Union Bay," "Stone left over from the construction [of Denny Hall] was used to build the observatory." (See University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections Division, "No Finer Site: The University of Washington's Early Years On Union Bay," accessed 04/23/2012.

The building was erected at a cost of $5,000. (See Paul Ivester, Index of Old Building Record Plans with Historical Summaries, [Seattle: University of Washington, Physical Plant Department, 1977], n.p.)

Building Notes

The UW Physical Plant Department gave the Observatory the administrative number "Building 005."


An addition, costing $3,000, was made to the UW Observatory in 1912.

PCAD id: 5434