Location: 109 Capitol Way N
Local register; Olympia Downtown National Historic District; Diversity:Chinese heritage
Olympia Hardware Co. 1914, Robert Esterly, courtesy of Washington State Historical Society
Olympia Hardware Company building today (2012) photograph by Matt Kennelly
The Olympia Hardware Building, erected in 1884, is one of the oldest existing commercial buildings in the city. It was built by owner Charles Williams, who went into business soon after with his brother Sam (Charles was later a partner in Mottman Mercantile after George Mottman took over management from Toklas and Kaufman). This masonry building replaced an earlier wood structure, pictured in link below. Over the years the building has housed several businesses, including the Bilger and Going Hardware store. In recent memory it was the home of Kay’s Chop Suey, a popular Chinese restaurant managed by the Kay family. The building features attractive, original cast iron pilasters at the sides of the two openings. It is listed on the local register and is part of the National Downtown Historic District.
For more information follow these links:
Downtown Olympia National Historic District
Washington State Historical Society photograph collection (enter following catalog numbers in Collections Search box): 2010.149.36.1 (above photo); C19188.8.131.52.7; C1949.1301.31.10; C2008.5.47 (earlier wooden Williams Hardware store)
Article: Chinese in Olympia: Restaurants
For more information on the Kay and Williams families, Bilger, and Going, see the Residents section of this website.
Copyright © 2022 Deborah Ross