Kenmore was primarily dense forest for many years while Bothell and Woodinville were being built up, and was mostly owned by investors. One of these investors, Philo Remington (inventor of Remington guns) sold some of the investment property to Watson C. Squire (his son-in-law).

Squire was the last territorial governor of Washington state and one of our states' first United States Senators. He erected a water tower and the availability of water attracted water squatters. Shirley Squire, his sister, a landscape architect in Massachusetts, had planned to make it into a residential waterfront park complete with lagoons, but Squire died in 1926 before he was able to build it.

Sportsmen enjoyed hunting in the area of the marsh at the mouth of the Sammamish and a boathouse and resort house accommodated them at Peterson’s Landing, near the present highway bridge. There was a houseboat hotel with a saloon and floats for mooring. In fact, there were duck clubs up the river, usually small cabins owned by small groups of well-to-do citizens from Kirkland.

Because of the loggers, sportsmen and saloons, weekends were known to be rowdy and busy. There were places like the 'Bucket of Blood' which existed at the location of the present Tradewell Store, which existed as late as 1940. 'The Blind Pig' was only accessible to boats and got its name because during the Prohibition it was easy to dump evidence in the water in case of a raid.

The Red Brick Highway, which was first called Squire Boulevard in Kenmore, then became Bothell Brick Road, opened in 1913 and stimulated growth in Kenmore.

After the end of the first World War, the Puget Mill Company (Pope & Talbot) offered small tracts of land. Homes were built north of the highway and between the main intersection and Swamp Creek. Progression of the Moorlands also started about the same time, especially after a bridge was built across the river about 1918. The Mitchell family built a store in 1919 at the Kenmore crossroads and the first service station went in the following year.

Kenmore had its own school district for many years and built its first school in 1914, then in 1916 consolidated with Bothell. The children were picked up in a milk truck, with benches put in every morning and again in the afternoon. It wasn’t until 1920 that the school obtained a real school bus. The original school faced what is now NE 181st Street, then it was used by the Kenmore Community Club from 1925 until 1930.

During the second half of the 20th Century, the population of Kenmore grew quickly. On August, 31, 1998 it was incorporated, making it the newest city in King County.

Bio courtesy of


For more information on the city of Kenmore
City Hall: 6700 NE 181st St, Kenmore WA  |  425-481-3236


Northshore School District



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