Newcastle, WA... Small Town with a Large History.

By
Title Company with First American Title

Just east of Seattle, across Lake Washington, nestled in the hills next to Cougar Mountain, south of Bellevue, west of Issaquah, and north of Renton, is the small City of Newcastle, Washington. It’s truly a beautiful area and one of my favorite neighborhoods.

Newcastle, Washington 1880's

Newcastle incorporated in 1994, but its history goes back 140 years. In the 1870’s it was a thriving coal mining community and soon boasted a population larger than Seattle for a time. My family has roots here. 

My grandparents were immigrants. My grandfather George Fabre arrived here in 1912 from France, and Pauline Longville, my grandmother came with her widowed mother and brother Emile from Belgium in 1906. They met in Black Diamond, another coal town about 30 miles due south in the newly formed King County.

 

Grandma Pauline, Dad, Rene, Great Grandma Celine, Steve, and Terry.

 

One of my favorite family stories about George and Pauline was how they met. Great Grandmother Celine Boulanger (Longville) came to Black Diamond and setup a boarding house for the miners. Celine, true to her namesake was also a fabulous baker. She built a huge adobe oven and became a local legend, known for her baked breads and pastries. Pauline helped her mom run the place (and I can testify to the fact that she too, was an absolutely fantastic cook and baker in her own right). Besides being very attractive, I have no doubt why George fell for Pauline! 

 

As newly weds they moved to Newcastle and lived in the company owned town. My Uncle George was born there in 1919 and later my dad in 1921, in the company owned town. I confess that my knowledge of our family history is somewhat weak. My Grandparents I think wanted to forget the hard life of coal mining and never talked about it, so I don’t know very much about this time.

 

 
Residential Transaction Study 6/11/2009
Project description: Newcastle WA 98056 ~ non-waterfront single family dwellings
 
monthly market Most recent transaction: 5/28/2009 Market (homes): 1880
month year sales mrkt% $/sqft avg price median
May 2009 8 0.4% $197 $498,244 $417,500
Apr 2009 8 0.4% $164 $519,869 $517,500
Mar 2009 1 0.1% $213 $285,000 $285,000
Feb 2009 2 0.1% $206 $496,500 $496,500
Jan 2009 2 0.1% $262 $492,500 $492,500
Dec 2008 2 0.1% $219 $544,800 $544,800
 
property characteristics
1 story 881 w/ bsmt 717 platted 1,842
1.5 story 40 avg bsmt sqft 1,140 avg lot sqft1 13,926
2 story 954 w/ garage 1,547 unplatted 38
3+ story 1 avg garage sqft 538 avg lot sqft2 34,396
avg % imprvd 60% avg year built 1981 avg bldg sqft 2,446
avg # beds 4 avg # baths 2    
  1avg lot sqft of all platted properties 2avg lot sqft of all unplatted properties
 

I got on Ancestory.com and found the 1920 census. There you’ll find George Sr., Pauline, and George Jr. Dad wasn’t there yet, but there are a lot of relatives and names of people I knew growing up; the Baima’s, Delauranti’s, Thirion’s, Rubattino’s, and the Banchero’s to name a few.

I also found the 1930 census and the Fabre’s and family have all moved to Renton. I thought it was interesting that all the relatives and almost all of the neighbors had stayed so close together through the years and the whole clan in Newcastle picked up and moved to Renton, many of them within the same neighborhood. My Grandpa George became a contractor, and so did my Grandmothers older brother Emil (whom we always knew as Nono). Both of them, as independents, built an amazing number of nice homes in Renton through the 1930’s and 1940’s.

 
Residential Transaction Study 6/11/2009
Project description: Newcastle WA 98059 ~ non-waterfront single family dwellings
 
monthly market Most recent transaction: 5/20/2009 Market (homes): 1104
month year sales mrkt% $/sqft avg price median
May 2009 5 0.5% $207 $837,243 $800,000
Apr 2009 4 0.4% $196 $770,000 $737,500
Mar 2009 5 0.5% $246 $920,220 $1,012,500
Feb 2009 3 0.3% $249 $1,158,333 $1,175,000
Jan 2009          
Dec 2008 4 0.4% $185 $768,750 $692,500
 
property characteristics
1 story 125 w/ bsmt 294 platted 1,058
1.5 story 9 avg bsmt sqft 1,195 avg lot sqft1 11,626
2 story 938 w/ garage 1,026 unplatted 46
3+ story 8 avg garage sqft 678 avg lot sqft2 106,176
avg % imprvd 65% avg year built 1995 avg bldg sqft 3,431
avg # beds 4 avg # baths 3    
  1avg lot sqft of all platted properties 2avg lot sqft of all unplatted properties
 

Newcastle has grown, like most rural areas around here with a close proximity to Seattle. Yet it still maintains a rural flavor with a population of about 10,000 residents. Because of the Cougar Mountain Reserve, several huge ravines, a few rural corridors, trail parks, and a lot of hills, much of it still seems (almost) like the country I remember as a kid.

Some of the areas most stunning views are looking west over Lake Washington and Mercer Island right into downtown Seattle with the Olympic Mountains as a backdrop. You won’t find any humble immigrant coal miner’s anymore. Newcastle, especially the east half in zip code 98059 is now mostly very high end homes, with a lot of very well to doers in residence.

ARFCO MEDIA The data used in this report is deemed reliable, but not guaranteed.
© 2009 ARFCO MEDIA... Renton WA 98055
Posted by

René Fabre

"Where there's conversation, there's opportunity."

Please Note - The views expressed herein reflect only the individual’s personal views and are not the views of the author’s employer.

The Blackberry Chronicles, a blog by Rene Fabre and his travels around the Greater Pacific Northwest and beyond. Connect w/ Rene Fabre on Google+. Rene Fabre on Twitter. Rene Fabre writes reviews on Yelp. Rene Fabre on Linkedin.com The Audiorium YouTube Channel by Rene Fabre. Facebook.com/renefabre Rene Fabre loves digital photography and here are his shares on Flickr. Rene Fabre checks in on Foursquare. Rene Fabre is a musician and composer and shares some of his orginal music and recordings on Soundcloud. Rene Fabre shares his interests on Pinterest.
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Topic:
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Rainmaker
639,790
Marchel Peterson
Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro
Results Realty

Rene, I found your family history very interesting.  Isn't it sad when they pass away without telling their history.  My Dad is 91 and just now telling us about his time in World War II.  What a long history you have in the area!

June 12, 2009 08:17 PM
Rainmaker
431,657
René Fabre
New Media Marketing
First American Title

Thanks Marchel... indeed, our loss of uncaptured moments... My Dad was in WWII also, he followed almost exactly the 'Saving Private Ryan' route and later surved under Patton... I have a few really great stories to share at some point about that... 

June 12, 2009 09:30 PM
Rainmaker
639,790
Marchel Peterson
Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro
Results Realty

Rene, My Dad followed your Dad.  My Dad was a truck driver delivering supplies to the front line and they followed around behing Patton's troups.

June 12, 2009 09:54 PM
Rainmaker
431,657
René Fabre
New Media Marketing
First American Title

Marchel: Wow, what a small world. Dad was in the telephone core running communication lines out to the front before the troops arrived...

June 13, 2009 01:06 AM
Ambassador
2,030,434
Todd Clark
Broker - Beaverton, Oregon Real Estate Expert - (503) 524-9494
Keller Williams Realty

What an awesome history lesson about the area and your family. I love the fact that so many are still in the area, but you wonder what happened between the time of the coal days to today and the progression of the families to how it got to be what it is today. Did these families force their kids to go to college, so they would have the same life they did. Did they get in to the family business and become better off for it.

I love how a town with such a humble beginning became such a high rise of society area.

Todd Clark - www.LivingBeaverton.com

June 13, 2009 08:19 AM
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René Fabre

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Additional Information

I'm a teacher, artist, blogger and public speaker living in the Pacific Northwest. My passion is the evolving social media environment and how it is profoundly changing the way we do business.


As a certified clock hour instructor, I enjoy teaching new media marketing, social media, and emerging technologies to real estate professionals for the First American Title Real Estate School of Washington and Alaska.


I also enjoy teaching social media strategies for entrepreneurs and small business in the continuing education department at Bellevue College.


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