We all know the saying, “there’s no place like home.” But how true is that for each of us? For one woman, no sentence could be closer to reality.
Edith Macefield lived in Seattle, Washington, and she absolutely adored her home. Like many, she thought her home and the memories it contained were priceless. When a developer put Edith’s love of her home to the test, she proved that she could not be bought at any price.
Edith was given many offers to sell her home. It was located in an ideal spot for a new mall, and all the properties which had once been neighboring homes were bought out by the developers. Edith was the last hold-out.
The woman never considered parting with her home, no matter how much money she was offered. In 2006, this stubborn woman refused an offer of a million dollars for her little home.
When asked why she was so opposed to leaving, Edith put it simply: she didn’t want to relocate. She didn’t want to deal with the hassle of packing and moving. It’s an obstacle many of us don’t want to face, and we can hardly blame her for feeling this way.
Edith’s love of her home inspired many. The home was symbolic in the ever-changing city. There is something comforting about finding a tiny bit of stability among a constant storm.
The home even came to inspire popular culture as Edith refused to give up her beloved home. The house in the Pixar movie “Up” is modeled after this house. Now you know why even the house in that adorable movie pulls on your heart strings.
Unfortunately, the time came for Edith to part with her home and this world. She passed away at the ripe age of 87 years old, after she had lived a long and fruitful life.
During her lifetime, Edith attended many negotiations with the people who wished to develop her land. She developed a close relationship with Barry Martin, the construction superintendent on the project for which the developers desired Edith’s home.
When Edith died in 2008, she left her house to Barry. This might seem surprising, given how long Edith spent fighting off developers and struggling to keep her home amongst the chaos. One you understand Edith’s reasoning, however, this decision doesn’t seem controversial at all.
According to her good friend Barry, Edith had been concerned with keeping the house only while she was alive. She didn’t much care what happened to it after she died. Edith’s actions certainly show that she was willing for the land to be developed, just not in her lifetime.
As of now, the house is boarded up with a looming establishment surrounding it. The sight is quite strange, and if you didn’t know the story you would instantly wonder what had happened to leave this little property out of the grand construction.
Although the house is boarded up, the developers, Ballard Blocks, have suggested that it will not always remain that way. The community is excited about this news; it has done everything in its power to honor the house and the story behind it.
The community had, at one time, pursued a plan to float the house on a barge to Orcas Island, but this never came to fruition. There was an effort to purchase the home through a community land trust, but this failed as well.
Now that the home lies in the developers’ hands, no one is sure what will happen to it. Planners have hinted that the property may be incorporated into the development.
They scheduled a “No Demolition Day” on Saturday, April 21, 2018. During this celebration members of the community were encouraged to tie a balloon to the fence in order to show support. The event was a hit, and Ballard Blocks is excited about the future of the property.
This small home has been the subject of such an amazing story. Edith’s determination to keep her home while still alive proves that one individual really can make a difference.
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Source: Seattle Curbed