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Hausler Grocery Part 2 of 2: New Building at Rose Street

This is the second of two articles about the Hausler family grocery store. The first article told about their move to Seattle from New York in 1901 and their small, one room grocery store they bought for $100, right next to the street car tracks at Rainier Ave and Graham St.  

In three years they had saved enough to move the business into a two story, wooden building at Rainier Ave and Rose St. Their big sign on the front of the building stated “Atlantic Market and Grocery, R. Hausler Prop” and they lived in an apartment on the second floor. A hardware store moved in on the south side of the building.

The location was on the edge of one of C. D. Hillman’s developments that he had named “Atlantic City Addition.” It covered the area from the shores of Lake Washington adjacent to Pritchard Island, west to Rainier Ave. The north boundary was from a little beyond the north end of Pritchard Island to about Henderson Street on the south. 

With Mr. Hillman’s advertising and promotion of the lots, he promised, as an enticement to buy, that a lake front park would be included in the development. When he moved on to another development and no park appeared, the buyers organized and brought suit against him for their park. The court ordered him to give them their park and he named it Atlantic City Park. It is now called Beersheba Park after Seattle’s sister city in Israel at the request of the Jewish community.

The Hauslers began planning and saving their money to build a brick building adjacent to the present one at Rose St. The planing for their new building became a hobby for them. The street car line was adjacent to their business and there was a “Y” for the streetcars to turn around. Rose St was sometimes a first stop coming out from Seattle or a last stop, depending on the scheduling.

The car line then decided to move the tracks to the west so the Hauslers were able to buy additional land. They had saved enough money to start construction. 

When the new brick building was completed it was the finest building in the area. They moved the grocery store into the new building and other businesses joined them. Included  were a furniture business, drug store, a meat market and a barber shop. Upstairs were offices and one apartment for themselves. The old store was behind the new building for awhile and later was taken down. 

Photo 95.27.33

They selected a good location. It was at one of the main stops for the “Seattle, Renton and Southern Ry” as the line was called about that time. They were on the busy Rainier Ave and adjacent to Hillman’s new land development where many homes were being built. 

The Hauslers then sold out the Grocery business. It had been only twenty years since Mr Hausler had pawned his wife’s wedding ring for the $100 they needed to buy the little grocery store on Rainier Ave and Graham St. That twenty years in business between their first and last store had been sort of a business romance between them that turned out to be very profitable. Their new building was valued at $35,000.00.

The photos and background information for this article was given to us by Jack Stevens, Mr. Hausler’s grandson. In 1995 Jack brought us his family album and allowed us to copy all of the photos. It is a wonderful collection. Jack’s sister, Rosanne Nelson, was living in the family home on Pritchard Island. 

Jack was an engraver before he retired and moved to Oregon to run a hot springs resort. Among the photos in the album was a Washington State Revenue Bond issued by the State Department of Transportation in 1939. It was one of the bonds he had done the engraving for while employed with the company that held the State contract to produce the bonds. 

This bond was issued for the construction of the original Lake Washington Floating Bridge. At the top of the bond was this beautifully engraved image of what appears to be the original “Galloping Gertie,” Tacoma Narrows Bridge. Ironically each of the bridges made national headlines when wind storms sent them to the bottom.

Photo 95.27.25 

The Hausler Building under construction in 1921on the southeast corner of Rainier Ave and Rose St. Reinholt Hausler is the man standing at the left foreground in front of the horse.

Photo 95.27.33

Their completed brick building. The old building to the left had not been taken down yet. The Mountain Drug Company is the main tenant on the corner. Hausler’s Atlantic City Grocery is to the right between the light pole and the car. 

Days Gone By 

South District Journal 4/25/2001

By Buzz Anderson


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