Vanished Fairhaven Landmarks

Fairhaven's boom years of 1889-92 saw significant expansion in both population and building construction.   The most famous was the Fairhaven Hotel constructed in 1889 and 1890, which exemplifies the hopes and dreams of the early founders of the town of Fairhaven.
 
Other historic landmarks exist now only in photos and memories of long-time Southsiders.  These include: the Blonden Block, The Citizens Bank/Sandwick Building, the Cowgill House (moved to make way for the dreams of an opera house), and a massive land mass called Poe's Point or Deadman's Point which was once an early cemetery.


Fairhaven Hotel Poster 1890
Whatcom Museum Photo Archives # 1971.03.02
Fairhaven Hotel
(1889 - 1956)
 
Occupied the NE corner of 12th Street and Harris Avenue
 
The elegant Fairhaven Hotel was constructed in 1889-1890, The collapse of its trade and final demolition is also a testament to the shattered dreams of a town once poised to be the terminus of the Great Northern Railroad.

Financed by entrepreneurs Nelson Bennett and C.X. Larrabee and designed by local architects, Longstaff and Black, the hotel boasted 100 rooms.  It was serviced by a hydraulic elevator, lit by gas and electric lights, decorated with elegant oak furniture and brass hardware and heated by large steam boilers.
 
 

  

 
 
Other Vanished Landmarks
 
This photograph at 11th Street looking down Harris Avenue captures the image of two former Fairhaven buildings as well as two existing historic buildings. 
 
The Blonden Block, the onion-domed building on the left, was demolished in 1950 not long after this photo was taken.  The remains of the Citizen's Bank/Sandwick Building can be seen on the right (beyond the Coca-Cola sign).  That building caught fire in 1949.
 
The corners of two existing buildings can also be seen in this photo.  The Nelson Block (now Three French Hens) was built in 1900 and can be seen in the foreground left.  The Terminal Building, right, is Fairhaven's oldest building (1887) and has been home to Tony's Coffee since the 1970s.  
 
              
Looking West at 11th & Harris Avenue

 
   Then and Now
 Fairhaven Hotel
1890 - 1956
NW Corner of 12th St & Harris Ave.
   
  Demolition of Fairhaven Hotel completed in 1956.  Site currently under construction as Fairhaven Towers.

Blonden Block
1890 - 1950
SW Corner 11th St & Harris Ave.
 
 
 The Blonden Block with onion-domed corner tower was demolished in 1950. 
The corner was used as a community garden until November 30, 1972.  See "Kerfluffle" in Hippie Years.
 

 
 Citizen's Bank/
Sandwick Building
 
1890 - 1949
 NW Corner 11th St. & Harris Ave.


 
The Citizens' Bank became Sandwicks Building.  It caught fire in 1949.  As of 2014 it has been Rocket Donuts. 
J.J. Donovan sculpture can be seen left.    Left Photo Credit:  Fairhaven Illustrated 1890  Whatcom Museum
 

 
Cowgill House*
1890 - 1891
 NE Corner 13th & Harris Ave.
*The Cowgill House is a Vanished Landmark and Historic Neighbor. 
 
 
 
 The Cowgill House was one of the first residences in Fairhaven, located just behind the Fairhaven Hotel.  
E.L. Cowgill dreamed of a Fairhaven Opera House and moved his house up Knox Avenue to 17th Street to make room.  

 
 
 
 
? - 1919
Foot of Harris Avenue
starting around 4th Street
   
 
 A large land mass called Deadman's Point was located at the foot of Harris Avenue.  It was an early cemetery.
Later known as Poe's Point and Commercial Point.
"Most" of the bodies were moved in 1889 to Bay View cemetery--
  a few more were were discovered with the hill was removed using hydraulic water hoses. 
Bellingham Herald headline on July 25, 1919  "DEADMAN"S POINT IS NOW NOTHING BUT A MEMORY".
 
 8/21/19