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National Register of Historic Places Program

The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of the Nation's historic places worthy of preservation. Authorized by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Park Service's National Register of Historic Places is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect America's historic and archeological resources.


Property Name Ford Motor Company Assembly Plant
Reference Number 13000823
State Washington
County King
Town Seattle
Street Address 4735 East Marginal Way
Multiple Property Submission Name N/A
Status Listed 10/9/2013
Areas of Significance Architecture, Industry
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The Ford Motor Company Assembly Plant in Seattle is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places under Criteria A and C at the local level of significance. The facility is significant under Criterion A for its association with the development of the Ford Motor Company and the creation of a state-of-the art regional manufacturing and distribution center for seminal models of Ford automobiles in the Pacific Northwest. Under Criterion C, the property is significant as an excellent example of the work of industrial architect Albert Kahn ( 1869-1942), whose designs revolutionized the form of the American factory in the early twentieth century, many of which are represented in the form and function of this particular Ford Motor Company Assembly Plant. The factory exemplifies Kahn's approach to Ford's concept of enlightened capitalism in which the architecture affects factory conditions, the quality of products, and the worker through such factors as ergonomics, cleanliness, and the role of light and ventilation. The property's period of significance is 1932, the year of completion of the factory and the first and only year of automobile production. The Ford Motor Company Assembly Plant is an excellent example of a regional automotive manufacturing and distribution center from the early 1930s, and demonstrates Ford's genius in integrating a pivotal location, abundant natural resources, a ready human workforce, an increasingly mature national and international distribution system, and cutting edge industrial architecture to produce an efficient regional production center. 3 As an intact industrial cultural landscape, the Ford Motor Company Assembly Plant is an innovative and prescient approach to the development of a dynamic and highly influential American model of capitalism by one of the world's most important and innovative industrialists, Henry Ford. The property has a relatively high degree of integrity and retains all the character-defining elements that originally defined it, including the Assembly Building (Building 1201) and the Oil House (Building 1206), the dock, the enhanced waterway leading to the Duwamish River, and nearby railroad lines, streets and roads.


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Properties are listed in the National Register of Historic Places under four criteria: A, B, C, and D. For information on what these criterion are and how they are applied, please see our Bulletin on How to Apply the National Register Criteria