Structure Type: built works - commercial buildings - department stores

Designers: Saunders and Lawton, Architects (firm); George Willis Lawton (architect); Charles Willard Saunders (architect)

Dates: constructed 1896, demolished 1928

7 stories

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2nd Avenue and Pike Street
Downtown, Seattle, WA 98101

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The second Bon Marche Department Store operated on the SW corner of Second Avenue and Pike Street

Building History

The Bon Marche grew for 32 years in this location, from 1896 until 1928.

Hahn Department Stores, a 29-store group--bought the Bon Marche in 1929. Federated Department Stores, a holding Company composed of the Bon Marche, Hahn, Abraham and Straus (A and S), of Brooklyn, NY, Filene's, Boston, MA, and F and R. Lazarus and Company, emerged in 1929, as well. Federated chose to demolish this store c. 1929. Hahn also undertook the start of the third Bon Marche Department Store in Downtown Seattle, at 3rd Avenue and Pine Street.

The Seattle-based retailer Fraser-Paterson Department Store erected its second facility on this site between 1929 and 1930, but it operated for less than three years, between 1930 and 1933. Fraser-Paterson fell victim to the Depression and closed its doors in 01/1933. An article in the Seattle Times of 1966 related the Fraser-Paterson Store #2's brief history: "The locally financed department store was built within a year of the 1929 'crash' and gained national attention. The Fraser-Patterson store was an answer to President Herbert Hoover's depression plea, 'Build Now,' and on opening day it was bathed in floodlights illuminated by a telegraph hook up with the White House itself. Alas, in spite of the fanfare and a liberal-credit plan, the department store closed its doors two years, four months later. ...Carew & Shaw took over the premises in 1934, succeeded by Nordhoff & Moore. Penney's leased the building in 1939 and purchased it outright the next year." (See Don Wright, "Times Troubleshooter," Seattle Times, 10/05/1966, p. 19.)

J.C. Penney Company operated a department store in this building on the former Bon Marche site between 1939 to 1982.


This store grew consistently during its years of operation, 1896-1928, buying nearby properties and adding floors. The store of 1896 had one story; the next year it had three and by the 1910s, it had seven; this growth corresponded with skyrocketing sales. According to James R. Warren, in his essay "Bon Marché Department Store," "Annual sales grew from $338,000 in 1900 to $8 million in 1923." Major additions were made to the second Bon Marche building in 1902 and 1911. (See "Bon Marché Department Store," 09/18/1999,Accessed 07/06/2009.) An article in the Seattle Times 05/27/1906 indicated that expansion was being contemplated: "The Times last evening gave the first news of the contemplated extensive improvements in the Bon Marche Building. Another story is to be added and a four-story building will within a year be erected to the south of the present structure. It may be readily seen that the corner of Second Avenue and Pike Street will for decades to come be the center of great activity as a retail shopping district." (See "Seattle's Crying Need--More Stores and Offices," Seattle Times, 05/27/1906, p. 40.)


The Bon Marche store was razed c. 1928; the five-story J.C. Penney Department Store of 1929 replaced this building; Penney's, itself, was replaced in 1991 by the Newmark Tower at this location.

PCAD id: 6244