This short street in Seattle’s Windermere neighborhood runs from 60th Avenue NE and NE 55th Street in the southwest to 63rd Avenue NE and NE 57th Street in the northeast. It was likely named after Lochkelden, the mansion built in 1907 for Rolland Herschel Denny (1851–1939) and his wife, Alice Martha Kellogg Denny (1857–1940). Rolland was just six weeks old when the Denny Party landed at Alki Point in November 1851. Lochkelden — owned since 1974 by Sun Myung Moon’s Unification Church — was itself named for Lake Washington, of which it has a commanding view (loch being Scottish for ‘lake’) and its owners: Kellogg and Denny.
It isn’t often that a vintage newspaper article explicitly states the reason behind a new street’s naming, but when it comes to Radford Drive, we’re in luck. On November 30, 1940, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported, under the headline ‘Work started at Sand Point Homes project’, that ground had been broken the day before on a project to house 150 enlisted men, plus their families, from the adjacent Sand Point Naval Air Station. (The project was said to cost $620,000, which is ¾ of the average price of a single home in Seattle today!) Rather amusingly, the air station’s commandant, Captain Ralph Wood, is quoted as saying “the days when the sailor was a bachelor and a derelict have long since passed” as justification for the need for military family housing. The article goes on to say that:
Street entrance to the area will be named Radford Drive in honor of Commander Arthur W. Radford, former commandant of the Sand Point base, who launched the expansion program which has resulted in its present growth.
Arthur W. Radford (1896–1973), who had been appointed commandant in 1939, was promoted to captain in 1942 and to rear admiral in 1943. He became vice admiral in 1945, and was appointed by President Harry S. Truman as vice chief of naval operations in 1948. In 1949, he was made high commissioner of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands as well as commander-in-chief of the U.S. Pacific Fleet, and in 1953 he became President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s selection as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He retired from the Navy in 1957.
Today, the housing complex, redeveloped in 2001, is known as Radford Court, and is owned by the University of Washington, though some units are available to the public. Interestingly, the entrance to the neighborhood from NE 65th Street is signed Radford Drive NE and is on University-owned land, while the publicly owned street is legally NE Radford Drive, but not signed at all — and the addresses for the complex are on 65th Avenue NE (one of the city streets, the other being NE 64th Street, that connects directly to the property).*
* Yes, NE 65th Street and 65th Avenue NE intersect here. Because of how Seattle’s street naming system works, Windermere and Laurelhurst are the site of a number of similar intersections, including those for 60th, 59th, 57th, 55th, 54th, 50th, 47th, 45th, 43rd, 41st, and 40th.
This semicircular street in Seattle’s Windermere neighborhood runs just over a mile from Sand Point Way NE between NE 55th Street and NE 58th Street in the west to just north of NE 61st Street in the east, at the southern end of Magnuson Park. The street and neighborhood itself were named after Windermere, the largest lake in England.
Windermere was developed in the late 1920s by Laurence James Colman (1859–1935) and his son, Kenneth Burwell Colman (1896–1982). Their J.M. Colman Company, founded by Laurence and his brother, George Arnot Colman (1861–1933), was named for Laurence and George’s father, James Murray Colman (1832–1906), namesake of Colman Dock and the Colman Building. (Colman Pool was established by Kenneth and named after Laurence.)
Said property shall not be conveyed, sold, rented, or otherwise disposed of, in whole or in part, to, or be occupied by, any person or persons except of a white and Gentile race, except, however, in the case of a servant actually employed by the lawful owner or occupant thereof.
Notably, although membership in the Windermere Corporation does come with access to the private Windermere Park and Beach Club, all streets in the neighborhood are public — it is a gated community only in spirit.
Another one of the “university” streets in the Hawthorne Hills subdivision, created in 1928, Stanford Avenue NE was named for Stanford University in Stanford, California. It runs ⅓ of a mile in a semicircle from NE 60th Street near 45th Avenue NE in the west to NE 60th Street at 50th Avenue NE in the east.
This is another one of the “university” streets in the Hawthorne Hills subdivision, created in 1928. It was named for Washington State College, now Washington State University, in Pullman, Washington.
Pullman Avenue NE begins as an extension of NE 55th Street east of Princeton Avenue NE and goes ⅓ of a mile northeast to NE 60th Street, where it becomes 52nd Avenue NE.
Princeton Avenue NE begins in the south as a bridge crossing the Burke–Gilman Trail just north of Sand Point Way NE, and goes ½ a mile north to NE Princeton Way.
An article in the July 8, 1928, issue of The Seattle Times describes the new subdivision of Hawthorne Hills thus:
The property is situated on a “hogback” between East 55th and East 65th Streets just east of 35th Avenue Northeast.… It is the largest single piece of undeveloped residence property in the city limits.… Because of its proximity to the University of Washington a community center at the highest point on the property has been designated “University Circle.” At this point, 200 feet in diameter, the principal thoroughfares, named after well-known universities and colleges, converge.
University Circle park is ringed by 400-foot-long University Circle NE, which is approximately 125, not 200, feet in diameter. Vassar Avenue NE, Ann Arbor Avenue NE, and Princeton Avenue NE converge on the circle, while Wellesley Way NE, Stanford Avenue NE, Purdue Avenue NE, Pullman Avenue NE, NE Tulane Place, and Oberlin Avenue NE curve through the rest of the neighborhood. (There does not appear to be any organizing concept behind the selection of schools other than the fact they are institutions of higher education. Pullman and Ann Arbor represent state schools; Princeton, Stanford, Purdue, and Tulane private schools; and Vassar and Wellesley women’s colleges; but why these in particular were chosen, I am not sure. Incidentally, Dartmouth, Harvard, Cornell, Yale, Columbia, and Amherst were already in use elsewhere.)
Unfortunately, Hawthorne Hills — named for Hawthorne Kingsbury Dent, founder of what is today Safeco Insurance — was among the subdivisions in Seattle to which the developers attached racially restrictive covenants. In fact, according to the Seattle Civil Rights and Labor History Project, “Seattle’s first known racial restrictive covenant was written in 1924 by the Goodwin Company,” which also developed Hawthorne Hills, and
No property in this subdivision could be “sold, conveyed, rented, nor leased, in whole or in part, to any person not of the White race; nor shall any person not of the White race be permitted to occupy any portion of said lot or lots or of any building thereon, except a domestic servant actually employed by a White occupant of such building.”
Two good articles on Hawthorne Hills are “Names in the Neighborhood: From Keith to Hawthorne Hills,” by Valarie Bunn, and “Squatting in Hawthorne Hills,” by Zach van Schouwen.