Location: 403 Maple Park Ave SE
South Capitol National Historic Neighborhood
|Lea House, 1939, Thurston County Assessor, Southwest Regional Archives|
Lea House today (2014), photograph by Deb Ross
In the early part of the 20th Century, Maple Park was one of the more socially desirable locations in Olympia. Gracious and large homes flanked the park, which was planted with flowers and lovingly maintained. A bandstand hosted regular summer concerts, and a tall flagpole with a gold globe surmounting it crowned the park. The park was flanked by homes of Olympia’s wealthy citizens, including the A.D. Rogers home and the Ogden House. Unfortunately, most of the homes originally located here were demolished or moved to make way for the expansion of Capitol Campus to the east side of Capitol Way. The Lea House is described as a Chalet-Craftsman style house. Built in 1908, in the early years of the automotive era, it has a garage at ground level and an elevated entryway. As shown in the photograph at above left, it appears that the entryway was originally reachable by a drive, but is now served by a stairway. Additional modifications include the covered entryway that eliminated the Craftsman-style exposed beams. W.F. Lea was a lumber and shingle man in Tumwater. The home is in the South Capitol National Historic Neighborhood and is inventoried, but not on the local register.