In the early 1900s, if you lived in Ballard’s West Woodland neighborhood and needed a bicycle, you would visit George Carlin’s Cycle and Mower Shop and rent one. Bicycles were still considered a luxury for many families at the turn of the century and Carlin’s made it possible for children to experience the joy of flying down Phinney Hill, without the heavy price tag of ownership. Carlin’s rates were five cents per hour, or twenty-five cents for all day use.
After Carlin’s closed in 1939, Mary Archibald, who lived at 6202 6th Ave NW, opened a women’s wear shop in the vacant space. Archibald’s original shop was in downtown Seattle, suite 202 of the Republic Building, located at 1511 3rd Ave.
One long time neighbor, Vern Vellat, lived near her shop in Ballard’s West Woodland neighborhood and said that Mary Archibald was a much sought after dressmaker. While local ladies didn’t have the resources to schedule time with Archibald, Vellat shared stories of Seattle’s elite arriving at her shop in chauffeured cars to have a dress altered or a new frock made.
About 1957, she sold both the shop and her home, which were replaced a year later by an eight unit apartment building, which is still present at the address.
Approximate current view below and available HERE courtesy Google Street View.