3. Fourth Avenue North Houses

Stages of History 4th Ave N plaque


The plaque at 216 4th Ave. N. bronze icons reference the children and their dogs who gathered in the street on 4th Avenue to skate, bike, build snowmen, and play games. A memory of seeing Sputnik, the first satellite put into orbit, passing overhead on a summer’s night in 1957 is illustrated in the upper corners of the panel.

This block of 4th Avenue North, between Edmonds and Bell Streets, was a busy neighborhood for many families. Dozens of children and their dogs would gather here to play Red Rover and kickball, and to cycle and skate. Communal memories include everyone coming out of their homes to watch Sputnik, the first manmade object in space, pass overhead in 1957.

The street offers several examples of homes built in Edmonds after 1900, when the shingle mills were humming along the waterfront and steamboat service linked the town to the rest of a developing Puget Sound region. With lumber readily available, early Edmonds home builders took advantage, creating dwellings with only a simple wooden frame, commonly built on post and pier foundations.

A walk along 4th Avenue presents a wide spectrum of architectural styles. The August Johnson House (behind the plaque) was originally built in 1905 on the other side of 4th Avenue North. This Queen Anne style home features decorative shingles, a wide hip-roof front porch, and elaborately carved brackets. It was moved to this location in 1996 to save it from demolition. Several residential and community buildings were relocated from one parcel to another throughout the 20th century.

216 4TH Ave N, Edmonds WA 98020