Location: 1112 Olympia Ave NE
Local register, Olympia Avenue Historical District
Reinhart House 1981, Thurston County Assessor’s photograph from Southwest Regional Archives
Reinhart House today (2012), photo by Deborah Ross
Captain Caleb S. Reinhart (nickname “Cap”) was a son of Olympia pioneers Stephen Reinhart and Sarah Cock. He built this home in 1891, next door to Ralph O. Dunbar (see Dunbar House), who had recently been appointed to the Supreme Court. Reinhart and Dunbar had been colleagues in Klickitat County before Dunbar’s appointment, and Reinhart followed him back to Olympia, where his family had settled the previous generation.
Olympia Avenue (then called Second Avenue) was located in Swantown to the east of Olympia. It was accessible only via an unreliable bridge on Fourth Avenue and muddy roads and was considered a remote location, until the Carlyon Fill eliminated the Swantown Slough and the need for a bridge.
Justice Dunbar may have chosen this neighborhood for its proximity to his wife’s sisters and mother (see Byrd House, Bigelow House, and Ruddell House): although Cap Reinhart’s family lived in what is now the South Capitol neighborhood, he doubtless felt it more expedient to live near his boss.
The house is typical of the comfortable, unostentatious style of this neighborhood. It is classified as a Colonial Revival, and is more sparing of ornamentation than some of its neighbors. This neighborhood is a locally designated historic neighborhood, both for the historic significance of some of the families who settled here, and the harmonious nature of its homes.
Washington State Historical Society photographs (enter the following catalog numbers in Collections Search box): C19126.96.36.199.5 (unscanned photo circa 1949)
For more information on the Reinhart family, see Residents section of this website (the heritage listing also has an excellent family summary)
Youtube video on Olympia Avenue (produced by Panorama TV)
Copyright © 2022 Deborah Ross