Showing posts with label holdout. Show all posts
Showing posts with label holdout. Show all posts

Monday, December 29, 2008

Holdout in Seattle: Ballard's Edith Macefield turned down $1,000,000 for her ramshackle cottage

Click to enlarge Edith's house -- I took this six months ago, before
the buildings on either side rose to five or six stories (that's her car).
If you want to see Stuart Isett's great photo of the same buildings six
months later, jump to the NY Times article.

You've heard about other "holdouts" -- almost always elderly people who refuse to sell their homes; about people holding up Progress. Well, Edith Macefield in Ballard, did it, and we drive by the results every day. She refused an offer of $1 million from developers (probably four or five times its market value) to buy it. Whoever ends up living there won't have far to go to get to Trader Joe's or L.A. Fitness.

The New York Times must have had a very slow news day, because they just published a long article by about her refusal to sell, and the strange story behind it.

The article alludes to an autobiography she wrote and published that contained some fanciful flights of imagination. That is undoubtedly so. We've always called her Hitler's babysitter around our house. The local Ballard 'paper published a story about her about 15 years ago in which she claimed, among other things, to have worked as the nanny for Hitler's right hand man, Joseph Goebbels (and his wife Magda). No word on how she escaped the white night in the Fuhrer Bunker, when Goebbels killed his entire family as the walls came down around Berlin.

She also claimed in the earlier article to have married a bazillionaire in England after the war.

"The interior of Ms. Macefield’s bungalow remains exactly as she left it," when she died a few months ago.

It's an interesting tale, of Seattle, holdouts, a very interesting and eccentric woman, and an estate controversy. Check it out here, in the New York Times.