Madrona is a mostly residential neighborhood in east central Seattle, Washington. It is bounded on the east by Lake Washington; on the south by E. Cherry Street, beyond which is Leschi; on the west by Martin Luther King, Jr. Way, beyond which is the Central District; and on the north by E. Howell Street, beyond which is Denny-Blaine.
The neighborhood's main thoroughfares are E. Union and E. Cherry Streets (east- and westbound), Madrona Drive (northwest- and southeast-bound), and 34th Avenue and Lake Washington Boulevard (north- and southbound). It is home to Madrona Park.
The neighborhood was named by John Ayer, who contributed the land for Madrona Park, after a species of tree (Arbutus) common to the area.
Madrona's motto, "The Peaceable Kingdom," reflects its racially-mixed heritage. In the early 20th Century, the coal mining industry brought Chinese immigrants to Madrona. Later, the shipbuilding boom brought an influx of African Americans. For most of the second half of the 20th Century, 34th Avenue divided the neighborhood between mostly middle-class African American (to the west) and upper-class Caucasian (to the east). The Black Panthers used the Madrona Playfield on Spring Street and 34th Avenue as its marching drill location in Seattle.
In more recent years, as the neighborhood has gentrified, Madrona has been steadily returning to a more Caucasian demographic. The 2000 Census notes that, of the 5,097 residents in King County Census Tract 78 (covering Madrona east of 31st Avenue), 72% are Caucasian (up from 65% in 1990), 20% are African American (down from 29% in 1990), and 4% are Asian (roughly unchanged from 1990). Census Tract 77, two-thirds of which is in the Central District, has a significantly higher percentage of African American residents.
Madrona Neighborhood website
Denny-Blaine is a neighborhood in east central Seattle, Washington. It is bounded on the east by Lake Washington; on the south by E. Howell Street, beyond which is Madrona; on the west by 34th Avenue, beyond which is Madison Valley; and on the north by Lake Washington Boulevard E. and E. Prospect Street, beyond which are Washington Park and Madison Park.
The neighborhood's main thoroughfares are E. Denny Way and E. Harrison Street (east- and westbound) and Dorffel Drive E. and Lake Washington and McGilvra Boulevards E. (north- and southbound). Denny-Blaine Park is on the Lake Washington waterfront at the foot of E. Denny-Blaine Place.
The neighborhood is named after its developers, Elbert F. Blaine and Charles L. Denny, who began subdividing the area in 1910. Denny was the son of Seattle pioneer Arthur Denny.
It was his greenhouse at 171 Lake Washington Blvd. E. where Kurt Cobain killed himself in 1994. The greenhouse was razed by his wife, Courtney Love, shortly thereafter and the house and property were subsequently sold to a private party. A poignant memorial to the influential and troubled rocker can be found next door in Viretta Park, where messages and dedications have been carved into wooden benches.