Throughout 2021 we are featuring events and people from the Sylvester’s Window cityscape project, now available online. Columbia Hall, pictured in the 1874 cityscape, was built in 1869 on 4th Avenue, near the center of downtown Olympia. It served a myriad of functions: fire station on the ground floor, city offices above, entertainment hall (it hosted the state’s first inaugural ball in 1889), police headquarters, courthouse, and theater. Photograph selected and captioned by Deborah Ross on behalf of the Olympia Historical Society. For more information see