Archive for the ‘Italian Villa’ Category

Italian Villa on Historic Summit Avenue

Monday, August 24th, 2009
271 Summit Avenue, Saint Paul

Built in 1882, this home was commissioned by Joshua Sanders, but not as seen. The original home, from my research, was a one and a half story home that cost $5000 to build. When Sanders sold the home in 1887, the new owner, Emerson Peet, added a $7000 addition, which is the current home we see today.

Ernest Sandeen describes this home as a Tuscan Villa. The term is not widely used today for most homes of this style are lumped into the Italianate or Second Empire architectural group. So for my blog, I’ll put it under Italian Villa. Maybe because the home is simple in its design is one of the reasons it is hard to define. Not too much has changed about the home over the century of its existence. If you look closely at this photo taken in 1888, you can see that the central tower has a third story window in the roof, which has since been removed. Also, the second story porch on the left side of the home has been enclosed.

The current owners have been in the home for some time and the home is currently zoned as apartments.

The Burwell House in Minnetonka – 13209 E. McGinty Rd, Minnetonka

Sunday, April 26th, 2009
The Burwell House in Minnetonka

13209 E. McGinty Rd, Minnetonka

Built in 1883, the Burwell House was constructed by Charles Henry Burwell for his growing family, second wife and four children. Mr. Burwell was the Manager of the Minnetonka Mills Company beginning in 1874 until the mills demise in 1886. The land was purchased from the mill at a cost of $1000, and the house was built from a design found in the Palliser’s American Cottage Home catalog, or so the story goes. It is said to have cost a mere $3260 to build.

While the home is said to be in the Italianate style, I really feel it is an “in-between” house. The home does not have any strong Italianate features like window hoods, bracketed eves, or low pitched gables. In my opinion, it is more a cross between an Italian Villa, which features a central tower, and the Victorian Folk style. The home was built at the very end of the Italian popularity, but in the middle of Folk period. It is not always easy to pin down a single style to Victorian homes, but it is easy to see architectural influences in some of them. One part of the home not originally built in 1883, is the wrap around porch. Added on somewhere between 1989-1906, it is a good example of the Eastlake influence, with its elaborate spindels and woodwork.

The cottage (upper left) was moved to the site in 1894 from the Minnetonka Mills site, to house Mr. Burwell’s widowed mother. It is one of the original 15 cottages constructed to housemill workers. The summer kitchen (upper right) was added to the home in 1892.

The mill office (lower left) was Mr. Burwell’s office and was moved to the site in 1894. It now serves as the Minnetonka Historical Society building.The final photograph is of the original ice house (lower right).

The site is open for tours during the summer months.