Like many of Everett's other founders, the East Coast multimillionaire made his money in railroads and banking. But, like those same founders, Hoyt was looking for fast money in the early 1890s.
Pouring some of his cash into the city of Everett sounded like a good real estate opportunity, the kind of short-term, high-yield investment suited to skittish times.
"The economic climate was a little neurotic," said David Dilgard, historian for the Everett Public Library. "They were sort of expecting something really nasty was going to happen."
It did: A silver panic rocked global markets in 1893, the year after Everett's founding. Hoyt ended up cutting his investment in Everett, but not before he took a ride in his private railcar out West.
He wasn't interested in spending time in Everett. Rather, he wanted to chug on through, just to check up on it, as multimillionaires do.
"Just making sure there was a city here, right?" Dilgard said.
Hoyt's short-term investment led to a long-term mark on downtown, with a block that continues to bear his name: Hoyt Avenue.
The street has changed through the decades. In its early days, it felt focused on the mind, body and spirit.
For the mind, there was the Everett Public Library, built in 1933 and 1934 at the corner of Hoyt and Everett avenues.
For the body, there was the city's tennis club, located between Hewitt Avenue and Wall Street.
And for the spirit, there were churches galore, particularly on the blocks outside the downtown corridor, such as Trinity Episcopal Church and Immaculate Conception Church.
The library and the churches remain, but the tennis club is gone. Instead, that parcel of land has been turned into an artistic place.
The Schack Art Center now shares a building there with the Artspace Everett Lofts. Together, the two have helped give a lively new character to the historic street.
Because ultimately, while its name hasn't changed, Hoyt Avenue has.
Andy Rathbun: 425-339-3479, email@example.com
Hoyt's notable spots
The Monte Cristo Hotel, at Hoyt Avenue and Wall Street, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Schack Art Center and Artspace Everett Lofts, 2917 Hoyt Ave., are new complexes giving the street an artistic bent.
The Everett Public Library, 2702 Hoyt Ave., was built in 1933 and 1934.
Fun with mnemonics!
Every Monday, we'll profile a downtown Everett street, as we challenge readers to come up with a mnemonic device to remember their order: Broadway, Lombard, Oakes, Rockefeller, Wetmore, Colby, Hoyt, Rucker and Grand. Reader Dennis Burman suggests: "Beach lifeguards only relax when crowds have really gone." Send your ideas to Andy Rathbun at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at 425-339-3479. Top ideas will win a prize.
Read past entries in this series at www.heraldnet.com/thegrid.
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