History of 38 East Main Street, Walla Walla, WA – Die Brucke Building


Legal Description (abbreviated):

Northerly section of lots 4 and 5 in Block H of plat of original Town of Walla Walla.

Title and Occupant History:

March 2, 1863–A. J. and Sarah Miner, husband and wife, took out a mortgage from A. H. Reynolds for $300. The collateral was lots 4, 5, 7, 8, and half of 6 in Block. H. “including the residence of A. J. Miner and wife. II (Deed Book C. page 6; hereinafter C/6)

October 10, 1865–Charles S. and N. J. Bush, husband and wife, sold 1/8th of an acre in lot 4 of Block H. fronting on Main St. to E. H. Massam and John Dovell for $100. (0/520)

Dovell & Massam operated a wagon making shop. Dovell later operated a planing mill on the northwest corner of Main & Spokane Sts. and a furniture store on Main between First and Spokane.

February 22, 1866–A. J. Miner filed a survey, of lots 3, 4, 5, part of lot 6, 7 and 8 in Block H of the original Town of Walla Walla, that he had done by City Surveyor W. W. Johnson. (E/200)

February 24, 1866–City of Walla Walla ceded to A. J. Miner portions of lots 3, 4 and 5 in Block H for $30. (starting at the northeast corner of Block H, thence southerly 140 feet along First St.. thence easterly 180 feet, thence northerly 90 1/2 feet to left bank Mill Creek, thence along creek to point of beginning, “excepting the natural and necessary channel of Mill Creek. “) (E/214)

January 9, 1867–City of Walla Walla cede to Dovell & Massam lots in Block Land “fraction� of lot 5 in Block H for $15. (E/353)

February 10, 1868–John and Margaret Dovell convey undivided half of “fractional” part of lot 5 in Block H to E. H. Massam for $1. (E/605, see also F/213, K/178, 0/633, V/488)

April 11, 1868–A. J. and 8. G. Miner sold the following property to L. H. Goodwin for $1200: begin in northwest corner of Block H, thence southerly along First St. for 120 feet, thence easterly 99 feet, thence northerly to Mill Creek, then westerly along Mill Creek following the boundary line of lots 4 & 5 in Block H to the point of beginning. (F/61)

February 12. 1879–Probated will of Lewis H. Goodwin, deceased, bequeath to wife Lucy Jane Goodwin several tracts of land and to their five children: begin at northwest corner of Block H. thence southerly along First S1, 120 feet, thence easterly 99 feet. Thence northerly to Mill Creek, thence down Mill Creek to the point of beginning. (R/183 see also R/83)

December 21, 1880–Edward H. and Eliza Massam sold plot of land in Block H to W. J. Dyer and A. S. Bowles for $4000. (V/450)

January 23, 1882–A. S. & Sarah J. Bowles sold the above property to W. J. Dyer for $1 and other considerations. (X/460)

February 22, 1882–W. J. Dyer sold the above property to G. W. Staver. W. H. Walker and A. S. Bowles for $3500. (X/363)

March 4. 1884–A. S. & Sarah J. Bowles sold their share of the above property to George W . Staver and Willis H. Walker for $1 and other considerations. (32/171)

October 20, 1885-G. W. & Sarah A. Staver, husband and wife, and W. H. & Abbie W. Walker, husband and wife, quit claim deeded to the City of Walla Walla all portions of their property within the boundary lines of Mill Creek immediately above the bridge on Main S1, (35/340. see also 35/325)

October 3, 1888–Fred and Mary A. Stine, husband and wife, lots 8 & 9 and parts of lots 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, & 10 in Block H to J. R. Addison for $3500. (41J246)

October 5. 1888-J. R. and Emma C. Addison sold the above property to S. W. Babcock. (41/243)

December 12, 1888-G. W. & Sarah A. Staver and W. H.& Abbie W. Walker transferred the following property to Staver & Walker, a corporation, for $1: begin at a pain in the east line of First S1, 130 feet north of the southwest corner of lot 5 in Block H I thence northerly 19 7/100 feet along First to point intersection with south line of E. Main St.. thence 117 3/4 feet easterly along Main, thence southerly 95 22/100 feet to right bank Mill Creek, thence westerly to point of beginning. (42/174)

1890–the photograph on page 151 of R. Bennett’s Walla Walla: Portrait of a Western Town,’ 1804-1899 shows the future site of Die Brucke. Tom Shirley’s Shoe Repair Shop and the Singer Machine Shop could be on the future building site.

The 1880 city directory lists R. P. Reynolds, groceries & provisions, at the southeast corner of Main & First Sts. The 1881 city directory list McNeil& Woodward, dealers in groceries and provisions at 30 E. Main St, (the Bee Hive building is numbered 28 E Main).

The 1883 directory lists McNeil & Martin, grocers, at 30 E. Main.

October 11, 1890–Staver & Walker, a corporation, sold the above property to the Walla Walla Agricultural & Industrial Exposition, a corporation, for $6000. (46/631)

The story of the construction done by the Exposition corporation is attached. See “Building Over Creek Opened 46′ Years Ago.”

October 23, 1890, January 17, 1891, July 15, 1891 & September 14, 1891–the Goodwin family sold some of its interests in Block H to the Walla Walla Agricultural & Industrial Exposition. (47/250, 47/253, 49/532, 49/535)

July 11, 1891–0rdinance No. 417 granting the Walla Walla Agricultural & Industrial Exposition the right to construct and maintain a building spanning Mill Creek on the southerly side of Main Street and adjoining First Street at the .southeast corner of Main & First Sts. This was to give effect to the grant made to said corporation at the city council meeting of November 18, 1890. (57/1)

October 15, 1891–George W. & Anna J. Babcock sold portions of lots 2, 3, 4, 8, & 9 in Block H to the Walla Walla Agricultural& Industrial Exposition for $1 and other consideration. (49/599)

October 13, 1892–Lewis Goodwin transferred his interest in the following, property to Lucy J. Goodwin for $2528: commence at southwest corner of Block H and proceed northerly along First St, 79 feet, thence easterly 99 feet, thence southerly 79 feet, thence westerly 99 feet to the point of beginning. (51/245)

March 15, 1894–Sheriff’s Deed to record sale of December 26, 1892 to Miles C. Moore, E. F. Baker, H. C. Baker and W. W. Baker, executors of the will of Dorsey S. Baker, of the following property: begin 130 feet north of �the southwest corner of lot 5 in Block H, thence northerly to Main St., thence 117 3/4 feet west on Main, thence 95 22/100ths feet southerly to right bank of Mill Creek, thence westerly along creek to point of beginning; also other tracts of land in Block H. This sale derived from a court case of G. W. Babcock, plaintiff, and Walla Walla Agricultural & Industrial Exposition, defendant. (57/29)

March 2, 1897–Lucy J. Goodwin, Lewis C. Goodwin, Lemuel C. Goodwin & Sarah J. Bennett, formerly Sarah J. Goodwin, sold their remaining interest in Block H, an undivided 4/5ths of 79 feet by 99 feet of lot 5, to Robert L. Stewart for $3300. (62/162)

March 10, 1897–Robert L. & Mamie H. Stewart, husband and wife, and Joseph W. Goodwin sold the following property to George W. Babcock: commencing on First St, at the southwest corner of lot 5 in Block H, thence northerly 79 feet, thence easterly 99 feet, thence southerly 79 feet, thence westerly 99 feet to the point of beginning. (62/165)

August 21, 1900-Miles C. Moore, E. F. Baker, H. C. Baker, and W. W. Baker, as executors of will of Dorsey S. Baker, deceased, sold tract extending 117 3/4 feet along East Main Street by 19.7 feet along First Street to Max Baumeister for $8,000. (74/507)

Max Baumeister was a prominent figure in the real estate, insurance and loan business for many years in Walla Walla. He was a native of Germany and came to Walla Walla in 1862 with �but $15.� He encountered some difficulties because he understood little English. Beginning with a barber shop, which he ran until 1882, he gradually expanded his interests into merchandizing, real estate, insurance, the loan business, and even into farming: His first wife, Anna Hauer, died in 1879; they had been married in 1864. He married his second wife, Alvine Schweiker, in 1880 on Long Island, New York. They had six children. Historian W. D. Lyman called him 1I0ne of the foremost citizens of Walla Walla,” and wrote that he “belonged to that class of men whose business enterprise and ability won them prominence and success.” He died February 3, 1909. (Lyman’s History of Old Walla Walla County, Vol. 2, Chicago: S. J. Clarke, 1918, pp. 838-9)  R. Bennett’s Walla Walla: Portrait of a Western Town. 1804-1899 has photographs of the Baumeister brothers and the building where they ran their Oriental Hair Dressing and Bathing Saloon on pp. 80-81.

January 22, 1902–Gilbert Hunt conveyed his interest in the property on which the Bridge Building was to be built to Hopie M. Hunt. (115/371)

Polk’s 1902 city directory lists him as the president of the Gilbert Hunt Co., manufacturers of agricultural implements and machinery, etc.

January 22, 1902–Max A. Baumeister and Alvine A. Baumeister, husband and wife, sold an undivided half interest in the property to Hopie M. Hunt for $4,500.(115/373)

April 21. 1902–George W. and Anna J. Babcock (husband and wife, and owners of the southerly parts of lots 4 and 5 in Block H) made a Party Wall agreement with Max and Alvine A. Baumeister which allowed them to build the Bridge Building against the one-story building to the south. (113/334)

Polk’s 1902 city directory lists George W. Babcock as an architect and mayor of Walla Walla. There is a more complete biography in Bennett1s history of Walla Walla, pp. 148-149 of volume I. Buildings he designed include the Stencel Building, the. Rees-Winans Building, Paine School, and the Baker-Boyer National Bank Building that was erected in 1890.

Construction of the Building: Die Brucke was built in 1903 and announced as ready for tenants May 10, 1903. See the attached newspaper stories, �Building Over Creek Opened 46 Years Ago� and “Building retains original name,” for particulars.

December 16. 1903–Max and Alvine A. Baumeister leased rooms 20-28 of the “Die Brucke” building to C. T., W.W and J. D. Maxwell. The lease was to begin January I. 1904 and run for ten years. (911107)

The 1904-1927 city directories list the Maxwell Land & Photo Co. and related family photographic businesses in the Bridge Building.

The Whitman Archives do not have city directories for before 1880, 1884, 1886-8, 1890-1, 1895-7, 1899, 1903, 1906, 1919, or 1928 (the post-1930 listings will be treated later).

36 E. Main (later 38 E. Main):

1904–the city directory for this year lists Young & Church, books and stationery, at 36 E. Main. Since the Bee Hive address is 28 E. Main and, this is probably the corner of the Bridge Building (the attached newspaper story confirms this, however there is no record in the directories of the Johnson Brothers shop mentioned in the clipping). From 1905-1907, the Walla Walla Stationery Co. (Mr. Young’ is a partner) is listed at First & the southeast corner of Main. In 1908 the Book Nook Store is listed at the address and continues to be listed there until 1994.

40 E. Main:

Louis Cohen clothing is listed at 40 E. Main in the directories for 1904 and 1905 at 40 E. Main. In 1906 the Bridge Clothing Store is advertised as operating in Die Brucke Building in Up- To-The� Times Magazine. The Whitman Archives have no 1906 edition of the city directory, but the 1907 edition lists the Bridge Clothing Store at 40 E. Main: operated by A. G. Baumeister, son of Max. The 1908 directory lists the store as A. G. Baumeister Clothing, but the 1909-!1 directories do not list the store in the Bridge Building and list A. G. Baumeister as a partner in Baumeister-Paxton, real estate, insurance and surety bonds. The 1911�1919 directories list the Modern Clothing Co. at 40 E. Main.

42 E. Main:

1906–Kristian Falkenberg moved his jewelry store to 42 E. Main ten months after he opened his first store at 4th and Main on November 9, 1905. (Up-To-The-Times Magazine, 1909) He installed a Howard street clock in front of this store in 1911 (it was moved west with the business in the early 1970s to its present location in front of the Reynolds-Day Building). William O. Douglas got to know the store staff well while working at his store in the 1916-20 era and mentions him fondly in his biography, Go East, Young Man. Other Whitman College students worked at the store, including Douglas’ brother Arthur and Harper Joy.

Since the Whitman Archives does not contain the 1906 directory. 1907 is the first listing in the directory for K. Falkenberg, jeweler and optician at 42 E. Main. This listing continues through 1918. The Archives does not have the 1919 directory, but the 1920-30 directories list Falkenberg’s at 40-42 E. Main.

44 E. Main:

In 1904 the directory lists James Elam Agricultural Implements at 44 E. Main. The store is not listed in 1905, Elam founded a bank in that year. From 1920-1931, Criterion, women’s clothing, is listed at 44 E. Main.

January 1910–the Up-To-The-Times Magazine announced that the Book Nook Store was under the new management of its new owners Frank Thompson and Albert Crecelius.

May 7, 1910–letter from State of Washington Board of Tax Commissioners to Mrs. Alvine Baumeister, executrix, acknowledging receipt of inheritance tax payment of $587 for the estate of Maximilian Baumeister, deceased. (1291191)

May 1915–the Up-To-The-Times Magazine announced that the Book Nook had installed an new $2000 ice making and refrigeration plant. (p. 6403)

June 5, 1915–Agreement between Hopie M. Hunt, Alvine A. Baumeister, Charlotte A. Thompson, Alvin G. Baumeister, Maxmilian E. Baumeister, Olga S. Draper, Werner W. Baumeister and Carl E. Baumeister–parties of the first part–and A. W. Eiler and Izora C. Eiler–husband and wife and parties of the second part. The Eilers paid $1100 to use the wall on the easterly line of the Bridge BUilding as a Party Wall. (140/456)

The Up-To-The-Times Magazine ran the following notices relating to the building:

May 1917, p. 6680–“F. B. Thompson [son-in-law of Max & Alvine Baumeister] is now the sale proprietor of the well-known Book Nook, Walla Walla, having recently purchased the interests of A. C. Crecelius in the establishment. II (A. C. Crecelius went on to form a partnership with Pal Clark in Clark & Crecelius, books, supplies, etc. and then with Don Snyder in the Snyder-Crecelius Paper Co.).

May 1917, p. 6739–Dr. W. J. McMillan has purchased the Fuller Dental establishment, 1-6 Die Brucke building. He is the son of valley pioneers Mr. & Mrs. N. H. McMillan.

May 1919, p. 9078–K. Falkenberg, jeweler, has purchased a half interest in the Book Nook building from W H. Babcock Co.

July 1919, p. 9210–Val Jensen and W. H. Thomas have leased a store room in the Bridge building and will open a women’s ready-to-wear shop there on August 21st.

June 1920, p. 2071–The Book Nook recently installed a new and larger ice machine.

December 15, 1917–Hopie M. Hunt, a widow, ceded her undivided half interest in the property to W. H. Babcock, a corporation, in satisfaction of a mortgage. (143/528)

April 12, 1918–Alvin C. Baumeister transfered all interest in real estate inherited from his father, Max Baumeister, to his mother, Alvine A. Baumeister for $1 and other considerations. (145/18)

April 1, 1919–W. H. Babcock Co., a corporation, sold its interest in the property to Kristian Falkenberg for $10 and other considerations. (Deed #99469, see also #99468–mortgage for $16.000 on the Bridge Building)

May 20, 1919–the City of Walla Walla quit claim deeded all interest in the property to Alvine A. Baumeister and Kristian Falkenberg. (#99609)

July 30, 1919–an Agreement between Alvine A. Baumeister, for herself and the Baumeister estate, and K. Falkenberg for Falkenberg to manage the “Bridge Building.� The agreement mentions the Book Nook and the Cigar and Periodical Store opened by A. A. Hawman at 38 E. Main, K. Falkenberg1s at 40 E. Main, and the Modern Clothing Co. of H. L. Neslin at 40 E. Main. (#122573)

April 18, 1922–Alvine A. Baumeister, as trustee of the estate of Maxmilian Baumeister. deceased; Alvine A. Baumeister; Maxmilian E. Baumeister; Olga S. Draper, formerly Olga S. Baumeister; Werner W. Baumeister; and Carl E. Baumeister sold an undivided eleven-twenty �fourths of the property to Frank B. and Charlotte A. Thompson for “$10 and “other consideration not here named.� (#124808)

May 31, 1922–Alvine A. Baumeister, a widow, conveyed her undivided half of the property to F. B. and C. A. Thompson. (#124809 and see above)

June 1, 1922-C. A. Thompson conveyed to F. B. Thompson, her husband, an undivided one-twenty-fourth interest in the property. (#124810)

July 2, 1923–F. B. Thompson, as agent of Falkenberg & Thompson. F. B. Thompson, and Charlotte Thompson leased to the Book Nook, Inc. (F. B Thompson, president, and Ben G. Stone, secretary) the store room known as the Book Nook Store for 15 years, starting June 20, 1923, for $250/ month for the first 5 years and $300/ month for the next 10 years. (#134734).

August 25, 1923–Kristian and Grace Y. Falkenberg, husband and wife, leased 40 & 42 E. Main St. to K. Falkenberg, Inc. (#135620, see also #135619)

October 22, 1923–Kristian and Grace Y. Falkenberg sold their undivided half interest in the property to Frank B. and Charlotte Ann Thompson for $50,000. (#137093. see also #137092)

September 22, 1923–Frank and Charlotte Thompson leased part of the Bridge Building to Kristian Falkenberg, the lease was to run from September 15. 1923 to June 31, 1939 at the rate of $300/month for the first 5 years and $350/month thereafter. (#137158)

November 3, 1923–Kristian and. Grace Y. Falkenberg assigned their lease to K. Falkenberg, a Washington corporation. (#139690)

September 25, 1924–Karl Edward Baumeister, son of Maxmilian Baumeister, deceased, conveyed all his interest in the property to Frank B. and Charlotte Ann Thompson for “$1 and other considerations not here named.” (#144957)

June 5, 1925–Frank B. and Charlotte Thompson took out mortgage on the property with Murphey. Favre & Co. for $67.000. (#149692)

June 1, 1926–Frank and Charlotte Thompson leased the store space and basement to the Book Nook. Inc. (H. H. Evans, president). The lease was for 10 years, beginning June I. 1926, at $400/month for the first 5 years and $450/month for the last 5 years. (#167282)

October 1926–the Book Nook was issued building permit #4728 for builder Chas. B. Lambert to remodel at a cost of $425. (Building Permit Book 1914-26, Whitman Archives)

May 18, 1928–Frank and Charlotte Thompson leased rooms 1-6 on the second floor to the Associated Dental Supply Co. for 5 years, beginning August 15, 1928, at $115/month. (#172371)

1931-1992: The Whitman Archives has city directories for most of these years (missing 1934, 1936, 1938. 1940. 1942-5, & 1947); these directories “include a street number directory which allows a more complete tracing of the tenant history; the collection ends with Hart’s 1992 directory).

38 E. Main:

As stated above, the Book Nook had a continuing presence from 1908-92 and beyond. In 1935, Charles J. McBride, taxicabs was also listed at the address and continued to be into the 1940s. In 1937 Peggy’s Beauty Shop is listed for one year. In 1941 U.S. Postal Substation No.2 is listed. From 1946-1970, Monroe& Willman, Inc., stationers, is listed. From 1975-92 Western Union is listed.

40 E. Main:

In 1930-31 Jack A. Heacox restaurant is listed (off and on through the years, the Book Nook Fountain Lunch is listed at 38 E. Main and in 1981 it is listed. as Jack’s Fountain Lunch). In 1933 Schneller Optical Co. �is listed. In 1937, it is listed as vacant and in 1939, the Book Nook is listed at 38-40 E. Main.

42 E. Main:

This continues to be listed as Falkenberg’s Jewelers and adds Glimme & Cundiff Jewelers at the same address until 1970, when that partnership is called Cundiff & Cundiff. In 1974 Falkenberg’s and Cundiff & Cundiff moved to 6 E. Main. No. 42 is not listed after 1973.

 44 E. Main:

From 1931-33, Criterion, women�s furnishings, is listed, 1935, found the Mayfair Shop listed and 1937 the Mayfair Shop and Hadley’s Inc. From 1939-the early 1940s Hadley Inc., women�s clothing, is listed. From 1946-1972 Hart’s Smart Footwear is listed. No . .44 is not listed in 1973 and after.

46 E. Main:

1931-2, the Color Shop, paints and wallpaper is listed. 1933-37, Pastry Palace Bakery is listed; the name is changed to Palace Baking Co. in the 1939 and 1941 directories. In 1946, Mrs. Nellie Aylward, baker, is listed. From 1948-1956, Young & Lester, florists, is listed; in 1957, the name is changed to O’Con’s Young and Lester, From 1958-1967, O’Con’s Flowers is listed. In 1968, the listing is the Book Nook Hallmark Shop, changed to the Hallmark Shop for 1970-1987. Then from 1988-1992, no 46 E. Main address is listed and the Hallmark Shop is listed at 38 E. Main as part of the Book Nook.

February 1, 1932–Frank B. and Charlotte Ann Thompson conveyed their interests in the property to the Book Nook, Inc., a Washington corporation. (#199430)

February 18, 1946–the Book Nook, Inc., cancelled the lease entered into on August 3, 1944 (for rooms 10 & II on the second floor) with Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Co. as of February 28, 1946. (#290867, see also #279327)

January 8, 1948–Washington Mutual Savings Bank released Frank B. and Charlotte Ann Thompson from their mortgage of $67,000 executed on June 5, 1925. (#307877)

July 1, 1956–Book Nook, Inc., a corporation. and Charlotte A. Thompson, as trustee, in liquidation of the stock of the Book Nook. Inc., conveyed 251/500ths to Charlotte A. Thompson, individually, and 249/500ths to Charlotte A. Thompson. as executrix of the estate of Frank B. Thompson. (#484363)

There is no record of a sale by Charlotte A. Thompson or of the acquisition of the property by Doris C. Collins in the records of Pioneer Title Co.

July 23, 1980,–Doris C. Collins, an unremarried widow, quit claim deeded the property to Doris C. Collins, as trustee under the Doris C. Collins Revocable Trust Agreement #1, dated April 14. 1980. (#8006232)

December 31. 1993–Doris Collins, as trustee, and First Church of Christ �Scientist of Walla Walla, as tenants in common, sold the property to Snake River Housing, Inc., a Washington corporation. (#9400046)


prepared by Michael W. Smith. 2/95