Washington November 01, 2019
Ivar’s And The Serial Killer Just Might Be Washington’s Spookiest Halloween Story
If you felt like Halloween lasted all month this year, you’re not alone. When All Hallows
Eve falls on a Thursday, you can expect a full week of celebrating. But as we pack up our costumes and spooky decor for the year, as Washingtonians, we’d be wise to remember that we’ve got our own year-round Halloween story in our history. It involves a sinister female serial killer, a spooky house known as Starvation Heights, and the family behind one of Washington’s most famous seafood spots.
If you've lived in Washington longer than about five minutes, you've no doubt heard of the Ivar's chain.
Ivar's is the Seattle area's go-to chowder spot, and it has been a local icon for decades.
Ivar's was founded by Ivar Haglund, a lifelong Washingtonian who grew up to be a restauranteur and folk singer.
Ivar had strong local roots. His grandparents purchased Alki Point in 1869 from Seattle pioneer David Swinson Maynard, which is home to the oldest remaining house in Seattle. But unfortunately, this story involves Ivar's mother.
Ivar and his mother once fell victim to the treatments of Linda Hazzard, a complete quack posing as a doctor who starved her patients with controversial fasting treatments.
Most of her dirty work was done at the compound now known as Starvation Heights in Olalla, which eventually burned to the ground.
While Linda may have been a true believer in her treatments, she was also very manipulative and, at times, downright evil.
She believed diseases and ailments could be cured through fasting, intense massages that were more like beatings, daily enemas, and a lot of mind games. Lest there is any doubt that she was simply a confused woman who believed in her own medicine... she once convinced a dying patient, heiress Claire Williamson, to will her a monthly stipend before she starved her to death.
Tragically, Ivar's mother was one of Linda's victims.
Linda convinced Daisy Haglund to go 50 days without food until she died in 1908, when Ivar was only three years old. Daisy's friends had pleaded with her to eat, but she refused. An autopsy revealed that Daisy had stomach cancer, which is probably what she was trying to cure. But despite doctors ruling that Daisy likely would have lived had she not met Linda, Linda got away with the murder.
Luckily, Ivar was too young to be affected by Linda's treatments, although he surely missed his mother terribly growing up. Ivar died in 1985 at the age of 79, but not before making a huge positive impact on the city of Seattle.
Linda was persecuted for her crimes, but they never stuck. Ironically, when she died in 1938, it was during one of her infamous fasts.
Have you ever heard the story of Starvation Heights?
Read on for even more sinister tales.
Address: Olalla, WA 98359, USA