A Peek Inside Seattle's Remaining Communes - KUOW

"PRAG House

Location: Capitol Hill
Established: Summer 1972

Number of Residents: 13 members, including two children. (“There were always kids in the house,” Licata said. He raised his own family there.)
Previous residents: The Sisters Of Saint Joseph; wayward girls; antique dealer

In the 1970s and 80s, journalists and politicians gathered at PRAG House to joust and drink. The original members were mostly members of the sociology department at the University of Washington. It was a time when Boeing appeared to be going bust and housing on Capitol Hill was cheap. The group pooled their money and plunked down $4,200 for a 37-room mansion.

Philosophy: From an essay Licata wrote in Communities, a magazine about living in community: “In the beginning we were a political collective in the fullest sense: we wanted to change the world by changing our environment and our lives. No processed foods entered the house, only one phone was allowed but no TV, we shared a ’54 Ford Pickup for local trips and also to haul our 30-pound metal milk canisters in from some farm over an hour’s drive each way come Sunday evening.”

PRAG House is owned by the Evergreen Land Trust, which holds cooperative houses, farms and forestlands in the Puget Sound area. Many communes are owned by one member, which some commune dwellers say skews the power dynamic toward the owner."


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