Location: 520 Washington St SE
National Downtown Historic District, Local Register, Women’s History, Transportation

As it appeared in about 1935
Vibert Jeffers. Susan Parish Collection, Washington State Archives.
reed_buildingAs the Reed Building appears today (2012), Photo courtesy of Deb Ross 

The Reed Block/Thompson Apartments building was built in 1891 and named after its builder, local attorney, politician, and businessman Thomas Milburne Reed. The building was an important addition to the downtown commercial core, and housed a number of businesses, including at first the post office. In the early to mid 20th century, it was the home of a bus depot, the Anna Blom book store, and a cleaner’s. The building originally had elaborate decorative moldings at the roofline, but it was badly damaged during the 1949 earthquake. It was again damaged in the 2001 quake. Most decorative features have been removed, but the current building still has echoes of the original features of the building. It currently (2012) houses the Drees store at ground level, and the Thompson Apartments above.

For more information about and historic photographs of the building, follow these links:

Olympia Heritage inventory

Olympia Downtown District National Register

Washington State Historical Society photographs (enter the following catalog numbers in Collections Search box): 1998.81.3, C1985.12.4, C1996.6.12, C1985.12.20

City of Olympia Downtown Walking Tour

City of Olympia Women’s History Tour (Anna Blom bookstore)

For more information about Thomas Milburne Reed, link to our Residents section

Copyright © 2022 Deborah Ross