The Edith Macefield House Seattle

Image by Nicoline Miller

The Edith Macefield House – Seattle’s “UP-house”

Venture north across the Ballard Bridge in Seattle, and you might spot a tiny century-old boarded-up farmhouse to your right surrounded on three sides by the Ballard Blocks commercial development. Not much to look at, it’s nonetheless a symbol of an old blue-collar Seattle neighborhood standing up to Seattle’s rapid, increasing development. The small 1,050-square-foot home became famous in the mid 2000s when the 84-year old owner Edith Macefield refused to sell it to developers, despite a million dollar offer for her property. Undeterred, the developers ended up just building around her, her house thus becoming a relic from a Ballard that no longer exists. The Ballard local tattoo shop Anchor Tattoo does a special tattoo to honor Macefield’s legacy: her little house with the word “Steadfast” underneath.
Many think that the house inspired the animated movie “UP”, where an elderly man refuses to leave his small home, when the surrounding neighborhood is torn down for new construction. The idea for the film dates back to before Mrs. Macefield refused to sell her house, but Disney spotted the marketing value and had dozens of balloons tied to the top of the house in May 2009 as a marketing event to promote the movie.
The house is all boarded up now, and no one is sure what will happen to it, so go take a look while it’s still there. Before you go, listen to the excellent 99 percent invisible podcast about the fascinating story of Edith Macefield and her house.

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Details about this spot



1438 Northwest 46th Street, Seattle

Opening Times

24 hours daily



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Last Changed Date: 2016-05-19 11:45:13 +0200 (Thu, 19 May 2016)