Help Locate a Historic Home on Beach Drive with a Stone Fence

I received this email today from someone who's trying to locate photos of a home they remember from their childhood.  Do you know this home?
I came across your web site while trying to find pictures of houses on Beach Drive.
My great-aunt and uncle owned a house on Beach Drive S.W. during the 50's and 60's.  I don't remember the address numbers (the house was sold to a lawyer around the1965-1970 time period).  The house had a wonderful hand built stone fence around the front yard and was on the water side of Beach Drive.  The bulkhead was cement and didn't have steps down; we used a rope ladder.  There was two trees in the back yard.  During storms, heavy amounts of spray would actually go clear to the top of the trees. 
My relatives who owned it were Charles G. Schilling and Elsie (Elgie) Schilling.  His family owned an ornamental iron work company in Whatcom County and did iron work all over the state.  He designed and installed beautiful ornamental iron railings and trim work off the back deck.  Elgie taught school–junior high I think.
The  house had a daylight basement and the living room and larger bedroom had huge windows with water views.  I think there was only two bedrooms.  I was very young and don't remember everything but I suspect the daylight basement would occasionally flood.  The house next door had a swimming pool installed and then was transformed into either apartments or condos.  The house on the other side was owned by a person who had suffered a serious stroke. 
The house was on a curve (to the right) on the street and my aunt and uncle's car got hit in front of the house around 1964.  There was some kind of monument (an Indian Chief) right on Alki Point and it was within very easy walking distance from the house.  Lincoln Park was quite a ways away-too far to walk for little kids.
We once watched a boat sink right in front of the house in the early sixties.  It was hauled out at Lincoln Park and my father somehow ended up with it and restored it.  The adults on the boat had been drinking and children on the boat somehow released some sort of a pin that caused the boat to take on water and sink.  A baby sadly drowned. 
If you or anyone you may know is familiar with this house please let me know.  It is a big part of my most precious childhood memories.  I last saw the house and the stone fence around 1984.  I am hoping some of the "old timers" in the neighborhood will at least remember my aunt and uncle.
If the house is still standing, I would be most grateful for some pictures of it.  Thank you in advance for any help in getting info about this house.
I asked the author of the email for permission to post this and obviously they agreed…and added this information (potential clues):

Another thing I remember is that there was a restaurant about 2-3 blocks away on the water side and it had the word "Grill" as part of it's name. The house also had one of those things that I think are called a "dumb waiter" (?) that could be used to haul firewood either upstairs or down to the daylight basement.  We were admonished not to play with it–and of course it was absolutely fascinating to small children. 


I think the house had a garage on the left side that ran down from the street and ran parallel on the left side of the daylight basement.  My aunt and uncle never used it for the cars and it was full of other stuff.  I was only allowed to view it once.  This house is probably what most people would call a bungalow but my uncle extensively remodeled it.  
I just thought of this:  my aunt and uncle's car was a Pontiac Star Chief (I think that's the right name for it) and I think it was the one that got hit.  I may have a picture of it.  They also had a VW bus that they (and me!) traveled in.


  1. If the house was built prior to 1960 or so, and they have a guess as to what the address might be, they can try calling the Puget Sound Regional Archives — we got photos of our house from 1937 and 1956 that way. And if you remember landmarks, Google Street View might be able to help narrow down the location.

    Contact info for the archives:

  2. Charles and Elsie Schilling, 5637 Beach Dr. SW, 1954 Seattle Polk’s Directory.

  3. Hi, West Seattle Blog has picked up on this story, and has some input.

    Good luck on this!


  4. Was the restaurant…. Quenelles? at the foot of the whindy Jacobsen Road?

  5. Very nice post of this historic homes. Keep on posting will keep reading.

    Deirdre G

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