Archive for the ‘Colonial Revival’ Category

The Maud Hill House

Sunday, July 21st, 2019
475 Portland Avenue, Saint Paul

This beautiful home was built in 1888, and while homes are usually recognized for the person who built them, 475 Portland is more famous for one of its residents. From the years 1933-1963, Mrs. Louis Hill, Sr., known to many simply as Maud, lived in the home and helped shape it into the masterpiece seen today.

Maud Van Cordlandt Taylor was born in Staten Island, NY in 1870 to a very wealthy family descended from early colonists. While living in Saint Paul with her family, she met Louis Hill, son of railroad tycoon James J. Hill, and married him in 1901. Over the next four years, she gave birth to four children, and spent time in their grand mansion on Summit Avenue and their farm in North Oaks. When she separated from her husband in 1934, she took up permanent residence at her “updated” Portland Avenue home.

Originally the front parlor

In her early tenure, Maud expanded her garden space by having the home next door torn down. The delicate wrought iron fencing that surrounds the property was purchased in New Orleans, with local craftsman replicating additional pieces to completely enclose the gardens. She also altered the home significantly by having the front entrance relocated to the side, and the western walls expanded by four-and-a half feet to make the living room acoustically perfect for the many concerts held there (in the attic, you can still see the original roofline and window frames). The tradition of holding concerts in the home continued when another owner hosted singers from the Minnesota Opera and other groups during the 1970s, including Carol Channing .

The home is reportedly haunted, so if you happen to visit this home and see a lovely lady sitting at the piano or standing at the back of the living room, you could be seeing Maud Hill. She has been witnessed by guests at several events over the years but is quick to leave once noticed.

Lake Nokomis Colonial Revival in Minneapolis

Wednesday, January 12th, 2011
2709 E 50th St, Minneapolis

This fantastic Colonial Revival home sits a block off Lake Nokomis on one of the largest lots in the immediate area. Built in 1922, the home has over 4200 finished square feet, five bedrooms, as well as beautiful original features including hardwood floors, built-ins, and light fixtures.

To learn more about this home and see additional photos, please visit its principle marketing website.

Colonial Revival In Dayton’s Bluff – Saint Paul

Monday, November 1st, 2010

373 North Maple Street, Saint Paul

This beautiful Colonial Revival home was built in 1906 for Peter John by Buechner and Orth. Mr. John was a local shopkeeper and saloon merchant in the Dayton’s bluff area, later becoming a foreman at the Hamm’s Brewery. Louisa, his wife, was from the Hamm brewing family, her father being Theodore Hamm himself.

The home has beautiful architectural details, including the Ionic columns that support the wrap around porch and the limestone base. One of my favorite details is the basement arches with the original iron grating that looks like sun rays.

Masonry Historic Home in Dayton’s Bluff

Saturday, February 20th, 2010

762 East 6th Street, Saint Paul

This interesting masonry home was built around 1889 by Andrew J. Hoban, a local stonemason. While it is quite easy to walk right by this home on 6th Street as there is nothing “grand” about it, careful inspection of the home will show some unique features. I have noted these in the photos which include the large limestone voussoir over the front windows, the long side brackets on one side of the home, and the brick oriel window on the west side. A home completely built of brick is also rare for the area, as many homes are more Victorian in design.

Second Empire turned Colonial Revival

Friday, January 8th, 2010
285 Summit Avenue, Saint Paul, MN

In 1882, a two story Second Empire Home was built on this site by Henry Rice, a local congressman and US Senator. He owned the home until it was purchased by Fredrick Fogg in 1894. In 1899, Allen H. Stem was contracted by Mr. Fogg to remodel the existing home, and what emerged was a Colonial Revival design with a high-end twist. The remodel was so extensive that the home was deemed new construction even though some of the original foundation and footings remained.

The siding on the home seen in this photo taken in 1973 is not original to the home. But thankfully, since then, the owners have removed the aluminum siding and revealed/restored the original wood beneath. The home also has many architectural details worth noting. Doric fluted columns support the porch, with wreath molding details above. The front windows are very interesting as they are slightly curved, with transom windows above three others. The elaborate doorway on the second floor, as well as the main entrance, give the home an upscale feel of a typical Colonial Revival home.

Currently a single family home, the last recorded sale was in 2002 for $1.25 Million. With a little over 8000 square feet, the home has about 7 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms.

The Longfellow House

Friday, March 14th, 2008

This weeks Historic Home in Minneapolis is 4800 Minnehaha Avenue.

Built in 1907, the home was constructed for Robert F. Jones and originally located at 4001 Minnehaha Parkway East. It was constructed as a 2/3 scale replica of a Colonial house located in Cambridge, Massachusetts that was owned at one time by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

The home originally sat on 4.6 acres, part of Longfellow Gardens, a zoo and botanical gardens,which was run by Mr. Jones. When Mr. Jones died in 1934, the park was closed a short four years later. The property was deeded to the city of Minneapolis, which used the house as the Minneapolis public library up until 1967. Over the years, the historic building fell into ruin. It wasn’t until 1994 that the house was saved, when the home was moved by the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board to its current location and renovated by the Kodet Architectural Group.

As part of the Minnehaha Park, including Minnehaha Falls, the Longfellow House is used as an interpretive learning center.

Lowry Hill Historic Home in Minneapolis

Friday, September 14th, 2007

The first featured Historic Home in the Lowry Hill district of Minneapolis is 905 Douglas Avenue.
Built in 1900, the home is most likely similar to when it was first built, though the area surrounding it has changed greatly. Designed as a Colonial Revival mansion, the home has distinguishing characteristics of the style including full height column Corinthian capitals, dentils at the cornice with decorative molding, and a broken pediment above the door. The front door is also typical with its fanlight above the door and side lights.


The main home was recently restored to its former beauty and is currently listed for sale by Remax Results for $1,995,000. It boasts about 6500 square feet with 7 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms. The carriage house has also been restored and is currently zoned as a condo. Built in 1900 as well, it now has 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and is approximately 1800 square feet. It is listed separate from the house for sale for $649,900.