The Shoreline Historical Museum turned a page of its own history Saturday at its annual luncheon as residents and local history buffs got a chance to see the museum’s new home on Linden Avenue North.
Shoreline Mayor Keith McGlashan cut a ribbon that hung at the entrance to the museum’s new office building at 18501 Linden Avenue N, ushering in a new era for the 35-year-old museum as it transitions into a smaller space after moving out of the Ronald School Building in anticipation of the school district turning the site into a new Shorewood High School.
Museum Executive Director Vicki Stiles said the move and the shock of losing the building that the museum occupied for the entirety of its 35-year history had been stressful, but she is grateful that the museum will live on and optimistic about its future.
“The most important thing is that we are moving forward,” Stiles said. “It’s a sunrise for us—it’s a new day.”
Since boxing up more than 12,000 artifacts and some 8,000 photos, a team of volunteers has been working to restore the two buildings to accommodate the exhibits and bring the structures up to code.
Les Tonkin, a Seattle Architect and community member, said much of the electrical and plumbing systems had to be replaced in the aging facility, and most of the work has been focused on getting the basic functions ready to go so the museum can reopen as soon as possible.
“It was a rough transition,” Tonkin said of the quick move. “But they [the volunteers] have done a magnificent job.”
Of the challenges, perhaps the most unusual was how to remove an early-century Ford Model T car from the Ronald School building. Volunteer Hal Schelegel said he and other volunteers had to partially disassemble the car and push it up a ramp through one of the building’s windows.
“We didn’t have a inch to spare,” he said.
Hoyne and Stiles said they expect to see the new building renovations completed in the coming weeks or months, with exhibits opening to the public soon.