Raymond H. Peck

Peck, Raymond H.

(1917 – 1998)

Born November 8, 1917, Raymond Holmes Peck received his formal architectural training at the University of Idaho, graduating in 1940. Three years later he received his Washington State architectural license. Following World War II, a simple minimal traditional house featured in the 1947 issue of Pacific Northwest Book of Homes brought Peck some notoriety and commissions.

Early projects include the conversion of a 1908 livery stable into a parking garage in 1949 in downtown Seattle; a house in the Wallingford neighborhood (c.1950); and the Les Teagle Restaurant (c.1955) in Seattle.

With his business growing, in 1955 he designed and built his own office which he shared with fellow architect John C. O’Brien. The flat roof Miesian style office building was featured in the November 1955 issue of Pacific Architect & Builder and showed Peck’s increasing bent toward European modernism. While Peck and O’Bien reportedly collaborated periodically on projects the only documented joint project is the Casa Del Rey Apartments (c.1952) in Seattle, which was featured in a Concrete Products Association of Washington advertisement.

In  1956, Peck formed a limited partnership with fellow architect, John S. Detlie. This collaboration culminated in a design with architect B. Marcus Priteca for the Temple de Hirsch Sinai (1960) on Capitol Hill. The space-age cast concrete building received an AIA Honor Award in 1962. Other notable Peck & Detlie projects include the American Optical Company (1957); a Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. store (1958) near Northgate Mall; MacPherson’s Real Estate Office – Lake City Branch (1959); the Beta Tau Fraternity House (1960) in Seattle; the Bellevue Christian Church (1960); and and office and warehouse for the General Cable Corp. (1960).

Peck’s most notable projects were the Polynesia Restaurant (1961) on Pier 51 near the Seattle ferry dock, and the Polynesia Restaurant in Spokane (1962). The Seattle restaurant, demolished in 1981, consisted of three attached A-frame structures, lavishly ornamented with Hawaiian lava rock, Asian woods and heavy posts and beams all carved by Donald Keys and Donald Ingalls with Polynesian designs. He also served as the associate architect and construction supervisor for Seattle’s Cinerama Theater (1963) and designed several of Dick’s Drive-Ins, as well as a model home for the 1956 Parade of Homes.

In 1964, Detlie decided to move back to Los Angles, and Peck formed a new partnership with Black architect, C. Raymond Merriwether. Together the firm produced a wide variety of projects but mainly focused on apartment and care facilities. Notable work included the Merri-Vista Convalescent Center in Seattle (1964), the Merri-Crest Nursing Home in Everett (1964), and a wing of the West Seattle Hospital (1970).  In 1971, Peck retired and the firm was bought out by Merriwether.

Peck passed away in Seattle on June 12, 1998.

– Michael C Houser

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