Location: 120 4th Ave E
Local register; Downtown National Historic District; Diversity: Gay and Lesbian history

boardman_1964Boardman Building, 1964, State Archives, Thurston County Assessor Boardman buildingBoardman Building 2013, photograph by Marisa Merkel

The Boardman Building at the corner of Fourth Avenue and Washington Street stands at one of the more important commercial intersections in Olympia from its earliest days. The Olympia Heritage inventory is confusing in showing a construction date of 1925. An  earlier date seems more likely, since a 1914 photograph of the adjacent cafe clearly shows the incised M’s, clerestory windows, and fixed awning of this building. In any case, the building’s  vernacular style harmonizes  well with the architecture of downtown and is listed as a contributing historical structure to the National Downtown Historic District, as well as being on the local register. Over its years, it has served a number of commercial tenants.

From 1975-1985 this was the home of Hard Rain Printing Collective, a progressive small print operation that was friendly to gays and lesbian productions.

Olympia Heritage inventory

Downtown National Historic District

Gay and Lesbian History Walking Tour

Copyright © 2022 Deborah Ross