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Hugo W. Osterman

1906 - 1996

Born July 8, 1906, Hugo W. Osterman received his formal architectural training at the University of Washington, graduating in 1928, along with his fellow student Paul Thiry.  That same year he received his architectural license.  Osterman gained practical experience working in his father's architectural firm (Osterman & Siebert) and in the office of Arthur Loveless.

Osterman’s award winning design for the Frederick & Nelson Family Homes Project in 1935 brought him acclaim early in his career.  By 1939 he joined the firm of McCelland & Jones as an associate and began to take on increasing design responsibilities for the firm.  In 1952, Osterman became partner after Victor Jones left the firm.  Notable designs by the firm under the McClelland & Osterman name include the Florence Crittenton Home for Unwed Mothers (1953); the Gladding, McBean & Company Building (1954) in Seattle; the Lundquist-Lilly Men’s Wear Store (1955); remodel of the downtown Nordstrom Shoe Store (1960); Foodland Store (1960); and an Insurance Office Building (1956) on Belmont Avenue.

During the 1950s and 1960s, the firm specialized in the design of banks.  Their designs can be found throughout the state.  Project within the city of Seattle include the Dexter branch of Peoples National Bank of Washington (1957); a remodel of the Magnolia branch of Peoples National Bank of Washington (1961); Broadway branch of Peoples National Bank of Washington (1965); Peoples National Bank of Washington Computer Center (1968); North West Bank (1963); and the First Hill branch of Peoples National Bank of Washington (1965).

Outside the city projects include the Lincoln Federal Savings & Loan Bellevue Branch (1959); Seattle First National Bank (1959) in Olympia; Mid Columbia Bank (1953) in Pasco; the Peoples National Banks (1964) in Kirkland, Bremerton (1964), Mountlake Terrace (1966), Renton (1967); and

Osterman was active in the Seattle Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, serving as president in 1961.  He retired in 1976 and passed away in Seattle on March 30, 1996.

By Michael Houser, State Architectural Historian - January 2013