Back in 1914, some folks still thought that the "horseless carriage" was just a passing fancy, but George Taylor knew better. In that year he built the finest automotive repair shop in all of Seattle, The Chief Seattle garage
The Garage featured many features that made it unlike any other garage in the City: The foundation of Taylor's new garage was an old stone building; a former butcher shop and gold assay office that was left below ground when Denny way was re-graded in 1905. Another distinctive feature of The Chief Seattle was the layout of the shop floor itself. Taylor made getting into, and out, of his garage a snap by building the shop in a unique "L" shape which allowed his customers to drive into the shop on Denny way and drive out on fifth avenue after work was complete. The Chief Seattle also had an impressive array of sophisticated tools and automotive service machines that was the unmatched by any other shop of its day. Aside from repairing and maintaining cars, Chief Seattle published a newspaper that covered local news and extolled the virtues of the Garage that housed its press.
After 60 years the building became home to Earl Shieb paint shop, and in 1994 the building was purchased as the new home for Fat City German Car. Throughout the years, the building had fallen into disrepair requiring major structural renovations before occupancy by Fat City in 1995. New plumbing and electrical services and new roof were added, and Concrete flooring installed, and electric and hydraulic car lifts were added.
Throughout the renovation process, tremendous effort was made to preserve the integrity of this landmark building. The Chief Seattle Garage is now home to Fat City a state-of-the-Art European Car repair facility, but it maintains the unique character that has made it a favorite with Seattle motorists for nearly ninety years.
Photo of the Chief Seattle Garage in 1937 is located in our rotating banner, source Seattle City Archives Photos.