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Male, Germany/US, born 1876-10-08, died 1974-07-25

Associated with the firms network

Cutter and Malmgren, Architects; Willatsen, Andrew C.P., Architect; Willatsen, Stimson and Company, Architects; Willatzen and Byrne, Architects


Professional History

Résumé

Carpenter, c. 1900.

Draftsman, Frank Lloyd Wright Studio, Oak Park, IL, c. 1902-1907. Willatzen was probably the best-trained Prairie Style architect to transplant himself to Seattle. Not only did he work with Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959) at a particularly fertile period in his Prairie Style development, but he also would partner with Francis Barry Byrne (1883-1967), another talented exponent of the style. Jess M. Giessel nad Grant Hildebrand indicated in their biographical essay on Willatzen: "In 1902 or 1903, he began working in Frank Lloyd Wright's studio in Oak Park, Illinois, where he remained intermittently until 1907. Thus, he as the studio during its most creative period. Willatzen claimed responsibility for the Larkin Building fence of 1903 and for the 1904 remodeling of the Rookery [Buiilding] lobby; he also worked on the interiors of the Darwin Martin house in Buffalo (1904-6). " (See Jess M. Giessel and Grant Hildebrand, "Andrew Willatsen," in Shaping Seattle Architecture, Jeffrey Karl Ochsner, ed., [Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2014], p. 204.)

Principal, A.C.P. Willatzen, Architect, Chicago, IL, c. 1906. In 1905, Wilatsen had an office at 620 Forest Avenue in Chicago, IL. (See Nineteenth Annual Exhibition of the Chicago Architectural Club MCMVI, March Twenty-Ninth to April Eighteenth, [Chicago: Munroe and Southworth, 1906], n.p.)

Draftsman, Cutter and Malmgren, Architects, Spokane, WA, and Seattle, WA, 1907-1909. (See R.L. Polk and Company’s Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1908, p. 1376.)One source indicated that Andrew Willatzen served as Cutter and Malmgren's Seattle Office Manager in 1909. He was also listed as a partner in the firm of Willatzen and Byrne in the same volume. Cutter and Malmgren occupied Room #603 of the Crary Building in 1909, while Willatzen and Byrne operated in Room #602 of the same building. (See Plummer's Business and Professional Directory of Seattle, 1909, p. 238.)

Partner, Willatzen and Byrne, Architects, Seattle, WA, 1909-1913. In 1909-1910, Willatzen and Byrne had an office in Room #602 of the Crary Building. In the latter year, they added Room #603. (See Plummer's Business and Professional Directory of Seattle, 1909, p. 238 and R.L. Polk and Company'sSeattle, Washington, City Directory, 1910, p. 1662.)

Principal, Andrew Willatzen (later Willatsen), Architect, Seattle, WA, 1914-1930. In 1915-1918, he had an office in Room #422 of the Boston Block. (See R.L. Polk and Company'sSeattle, Washington, City Directory, 1915, p. 1607 andAncestry.com, Source Citation Registration State: Washington; Registration County: King; Roll: 1991895; Draft Board: 06, accessed 06/26/2019.) By 1922, he had moved to quarters in Room #406 of the Walker Building and remained here in 1925. (See Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1922, p. 1504 and Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1925, p. 1465.)

Partner, Willatsen Stimson, Company, Seattle, WA, 1929.

Principal, Andrew C. Willatsen, Architect, Seattle, WA, 1930- . In 1931-1932, Willatsen occupied Room #803 of the Alaska Building. (See Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1931, p. 1794 and Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1932, p. 1694.)

Professional Activities

Member, Chicago Architectural Club, Chicago, IL, 1904- .

Member, American Institute of Architects (AIA), Washington Chapter, 1910-1911.

Education

College

The 1940 US Census recorded that Willatzen had had two years of college training.

Personal

Relocation

Andreas Christian Peder Villatzen was probably born in the town of Bevtoft, Slesvig (Schleswig), Denmark, the city in which he had been baptized on 12/02/1876. (See Ancestry.com, Source Information: Denmark, Births and Christenings Index, 1631-1900s [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2008, accessed 06/27/2019.) This area had been disputed for over 1,000 years among various monarchies and feudal clans. In general, the Duchies of Schleswig and Holstein held allegiances to the Danes and German principalities respectively. By 1876, when Andreas was born, the Prussians had asserted increasing political control over Schleswig-Holstein, solidified after Austria-Prussia's victory in the Second Schleswig-Holstein War of 1863-1864. North Schleswig had a significant German minority and Andreas would have been introduced to the German language and ways of doing things during his formative years, as well as Danish manners and speech.

He left this part of Germany in 1901, to come to the US. He settled in Chicago, IL, residing here for about six years, working with Frank Lloyd Wright's studio and on his own. He joined the city's professional organization, the Chicago Architectural Club in 1904. (See Nineteenth Annual Exhibition of the Chicago Architectural Club MCMVI, March Twenty-Ninth-April Eighteenth, [Chicago: Munro and Southworth, 1906], n.p.)

Willatzen may have spent some time in late 1906 or 1907 in Spokane, WA,, conferring with the firm of Cutter and Malmgren, who opened a Seattle office in 1907 in Room #500 of the Arcade Building. (See R.L. Polk and Company's Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1907, p. 953.) Giessel and Hildebrand wrote: "Willatzen came west in 1907 to Spokane, where he found work with Cutter & Malmgren. In 1908, that firm sent him to Seattle to supervise construction of the Seattle Golf and County Club. There, the following year, with Barry Byrne (1883-1967), another employee of the Wright studio, he formed the partnership Willatzen & Byrne." (See Jess M. Giessel and Grant Hildebrand, "Andrew Willatsen," in Shaping Seattle Architecture, Jeffrey Karl Ochsner, ed., [Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2014], p. 204.) Willatzen's name did not appear in the Spokane, WA, city directories for either 1907 or 1908.

Willatzen lived at the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) Building at 1011 4th Avenue between 1908 and 1917. (See R.L. Polk and Company’s Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1908, p. 1376.)The address of this location on the southwest corner of 4th Avenue and Madison Street was 925 4th Avenue in 2019. (See R.L. Polk and Company's Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1908, p. 1376, Ancestry.com, Source Citation Year: 1910; Census Place: Seattle Ward 5, King, Washington; Roll: T624_1659; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 0106; FHL microfilm: 1375672, accessed 06/26/2019, and R.L. Polk and Company's Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1917, p, 1651.)

In 1918, Willatzen had found new lodgings at 215 13th Avenue North in Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood. (See R.L. Polk and Company's Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1918, p, 1847.) The US Census of 1920 found the architect living at the Terry Hotel, 920 Terry Street in Seattle. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation Year: 1920; Census Place: Seattle, King, Washington; Roll: T625_1929; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 239, accessed 06/26/2019.)

In 1922, Willatzen resided with his wife, May, resided at 1639 Harvard Avenue, Apartment #312. (See Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1922, p. 1504.) They moved to 2901 Franklin Avenue Apt. B, by 1925. (See Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1925, p. 1465.)

He and May lived at 3813 45th Avenue SW from at least 1930 until 1940. In 1930, the house had an estimated value of $7,000. As per the 1940 US Census, this dwelling had an approximate value of $6,000, more than average for the time, but not greatly so. May's mother, Mildred D. Corbin Kyle (born 11/17/1862 in KY-d. 09/08/1954 in Myrtle Beach, SC), who was widowed, lived with the couple between 1930 and 1940, at least. (See Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1933, p. 1574 andAncestry.com, Source Citation Year: 1940; Census Place: Seattle, King, Washington; Roll: m-t0627-04381; Page: 1A; Enumeration District: 40-252, accessed 06/26/2019.) Mildred Kyle did not live for the rest of her life with the Willatzens as she died in Myrtle Beach, SC, in 1954. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation South Carolina Department of Archives and History; Columbia, South Carolina; Year Range: 1950-1961; Death County or Certificate Range: Horry, accessed 06/26/2019.)

Willatsen's last residence was located in the 98102 zip code of Seattle, WA.

Parents

Andreas (Andrew) Willatsen was born of German and Danish ancestry. His father, Peter Petersen Villatzen, (born c. 1833 in Denmark) married Elisabeth Margrethe Dam (born c. 1833 in Denmark) on 07/16/1870 in Bevtoft, Haderslev, Denmark. (See Ancestry.com, Source Information: Denmark, Marriages, 1635-1916 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, accessed 06/26/2019.)

He had two sisters, Anne Rosine Kathrine Villatzen and Getto Christine Villatzen .

Spouse

He married May McClure (born c. 10/1882 in KY-d. 04/03/1951 on Vashon Island, WA). Her birth father was Robert R. McClure (born c. 1853), whom her mother, Mildred, married on 05/19/1880 in Covington, KY. (See Ancestry.com, Source Information: Kentucky, County Marriage Records, 1783-1965 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2016, accessed 06/26/2019.) Before 1896, though, she had remarried civil engineer / railroad manager George Alllen Kyle (born 09/21/1857 in OH-d. 11/17/1924 in CA). May used the name "Kyle" frequently after her mother remarried. The Kyle Family lived in Tacoma, WA, in 1900, having moved from OH during the mid-to-late 1890s. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation Year: 1900; Census Place: Tacoma Ward 2, Pierce, Washington; Page: 4; Enumeration District: 0164; FHL microfilm: 1241748, accessed 06/26/2019.)

When she married Willatzen in Oakland, CA, on 0703/1922, she used her birth name of "McClure." (See Ancestry.com, Source Information: California, Marriage Records from Select Counties, 1850-1941 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, accessed 06/26/2019.)

The 1940 US Census stated that May had finished three years of high school. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation Year: 1940; Census Place: Seattle, King, Washington; Roll: m-t0627-04381; Page: 1A; Enumeration District: 40-252, accessed 06/26/2019.)

Biographical Notes

Some have spelled his name "Willetzen or "Willatzen." His original name was "Villatzen," but he changed the V to a W in the German manner when he came to the US. He also modified his name during World War I, like other architects on the West Coast of German origin, due to Anti-German sentiment. (For example, the California architect, Charles Sumner Kaiser [1874-1948], became known as "Charles K. Sumner" after World War I.) Willatzen's World War I draft card of 09/12/1918 contained his signature spelled, "Willatzen." (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation Registration State: Washington; Registration County: King; Roll: 1991895; Draft Board: 06, accessed 06/26/2019.) He seems to have changed the spelling in either 1921 or 1922. He appeared as "Willatzen" in the Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1921, (p. 1506) and "Willatsen" in the Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1922, (p. 1504).

Interestingly, the 1910 US Census noted that Willatzen's birthplace was Germany and his mother tongue was German. After World War I, however, the 1920 US Census, as well as those of 1930 and 1940, listed his birthplace as Denmark, and his mother tongue as Danish. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation Year: 1920; Census Place: Seattle, King, Washington; Roll: T625_1929; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 239, accessed 06/26/2019.)

Willatzen underwent naturalization in 1900, according to the 1910 US Census. The 1920 US Census indicated, however, that Willatzen had come to the US in 1901, and had been naturalized by 1906. The latter census was more accurate. Willatzen was naturalized in the Rock Island County Court on 09/22/1906. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington, D.C.; Soundex Index to Naturalization Petitions for the United States District and Circuit Courts, Northern District of Illinois and Immigration and Naturalization Service District 9, 1840-1950 (M1285); Microfilm Serial: M1285; Microfilm Roll: 178, accessed 06/26/2019.)

The architect's World War I draft card recorded that he was of medium height and build and had blue eyes and gray hair. The card indicated his nearest relative was his sister, Getto Kristena Willatzen, who lived in Rodding, North Schleswig, Germany in 1918. (See Ancestry.com, Source Citation Registration State: Washington; Registration County: King; Roll: 1991895; Draft Board: 06, accessed 06/26/2019.)

SSN: 538-22-4884.


PCAD id: 1973