Rosehill windows offer look into the past

By Sara Bruestle | Nov 06, 2013
Photos by: Sara Bruestle Linda and Brad Guilford bid on and won six windows and one door saved from the former Rosehill Community Center in an auction held Oct. 26. The windows pictured are their favorites.

Mukilteo residents now own pieces from the former Rosehill Community Center won in an auction – pieces of Mukilteo history.

The city held a silent auction Oct. 26 at Lighthouse Park of 10 windows and doors from the now demolished school. About 25 passers-by looked at the items, and three bid on them.

The winners were Mayor Joe Marine and Brad and Linda Guilford. The mayor and the Guilfords have special plans for the windows. They say that by owning these pieces, they are protecting a part of history.

Whenever they look at the old windows that decorate their homes, they say they will think of the school that once stood at the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Third Street.

The city surplussed select windows and doors from the school built in 1928 that later served as a community center for Mukilteo from 1978-2010 so that they may be saved and incorporated into others’ homes.

Mayor Marine won the “big ticket” item – the large window from atop the main entrance of the Rosehill School. When no one bid on two doors, he paid for those as well.

“The one I had my eye on was the one above the old door,” he said. “That was definitely the prize piece. I wanted to make sure it stays in Mukilteo.”

In Marine’s backyard in Harbour Pointe are other windows he’s collected over the years. The mayor joked that he has a “window fetish.”

His collection includes windows from the now demolished North Coast Casket Co. Building – commonly called the Collins Building – built in 1926 in Everett, and from the Byers family home in Mukilteo, built in 1919.

“They don’t make windows like this anymore,” Marine said. “You can see how the windows look rippled because of the imperfections in the glass.”

Those pieces now serve as windows in a garden shed or as hanging art between trees.

Marine said he may decide to hang the main window on a wall inside his home or between other trees.

“I’m not sure exactly what I’m going to do with it yet, but whatever it is, it will be protected,” he said. “It will be a presence, wherever I decide to put it.”

As for the doors, Marine has plans to remove the hardware – so they look more like windows – and then hang them sideways from a 32-foot long arbor in his yard.

Brad and Linda Guilford, of Mukilteo, won the remaining windows, two of which framed the one the mayor won. They also won a door. The couple wanted one or two pieces – and ended up with seven.

“They [are] really special, not only because they are cool looking, but [because they are] out of Rosehill School,” said Linda Guilford, who loves anything antique or vintage.

“I just wanted a part of that. To have a piece of old Mukilteo.”

Now retired, Linda Guilford was a school teacher for the Mukilteo School District for 30 years. Throughout the years, she heard many stories of “the good ol’ days” at Rosehill School from fellow teacher Lloyd Brodniak.

“He used to go to elementary school there,” she said. “He’d had wonderful memories from there.

“I didn’t go to a school like that, myself, where everybody knew everybody. Mukilteo is still a small town, but it was really small back then.”

Ever since hearing Brodniak’s stories of Rosehill, Linda Guilford has had a fondness for the school and its history. Brad Guilford quoted his wife as saying “Man, I’d give my eye teeth for one of those” over the windows.

“They’re gorgeous,” she said. “They’re art pieces. The old paint on them is very vintage.”

“It’s hard to pass up an old paned window. Anything that takes you back to old and vintage is cool to me. If I see a piece I like, I’ll grab it.”

The Guildfords said they may decide to hang their two favorite windows on the master bedroom wall above their bed in their Old Town home. The windows would be an “eye catcher,” they said.

As for the other windows, they may place some of them on the sills of their existing windows. The door they won may serve as a room divider.

“I don’t know yet what we’re going to do with the pieces,” Linda Guilford said. “I may have to hang them from the ceiling.”

Another auction of surplussed Rosehill items was held in 2010, before demolition, but did not include any pieces from the building itself; mainly office furniture and supplies.

The original Rose Hill School opened in 1893. Thirty-five years later, on St. Patrick’s Day in 1928, a fire destroyed the school. A second school, renamed Rosehill School, was built in six months and opened that September.

The school closed in 1973 and later was refurbished when the Mukilteo School District deeded Rosehill School to the city as a community center. The building opened in 1978 as the Rosehill Community Center.

In 2010, the building was demolished so that it could be replaced by a new community center. The grand opening was a year later.

Also saved and incorporated into the new building were two panels that say “Rosehill School” and “1928” from the former community center, as well as concrete and flooring from the school gym.


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