The Architecture of North Burns Park

by Susan Wineberg  & Ellen Ramsburgh

 

As North Burns Park was developing between the 1890’s and the 1930’s, homes were built in the popular architectural styles of that period. There are fine examples of Queen Anne, Colonial Revival (both Georgian and Dutch), Spanish Mission, Arts and Crafts (or Craftsman), Shingle, and Vernacular represented in the neighborhood.

Owners who have been stewards of these historic houses have received awards from the Historic District Commission for both preservation and rehabilitation.

  • Rehabilitation Awards are given “in honor of substantial work that returns a property to a state of utility through repair or alteration, facilitating contemporary needs but respecting the features of the property that are significant to its historic and architectural value.
  • Preservation Awards are given to owners who have maintained superior maintenance and repair of a significant property to preserve its essential historical, cultural, or architectural value for a period of 10 years or more.

 

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Paul C Freer House at 1410 Hill

The Paul C Freer House at 1410 Hill Street, is one of the original five houses in the Washtenaw/Hill Historic District.  This house was designed in 1898 by Michigan graduate Irving Pond, architect of both the Michigan Union and the Michigan League.  It is one of three Pond designed houses on Hill Street.  The Preservation Award was given to Julie and Frank Casa in 1990.  The Casa’s have lived at 1410 Hill Street since 1971.

 

 

 

 

Clement W. Gill House at 1710 Cambridge 

The Clement W. Gill House at 1710 Cambridge Road, is a beautiful example of a Georgian Revival house.  It was built in 1917 for Clement W. and Alice Gill on the south side of Douglas Park and was designed by noted local architect, Samuel Stanton.  Mr. Gill owned the C W Gill Lumber Company at 524 South Main.  David, grandson of the Gill’s, and Linda Logan were given a Preservation Award in 1992 for their stewardship of their family home.    In 2010, Andrew Schmidt and Marilyn Migliori received a Rehabilitation Award for the restoring the built-in copper gutters, the slate roof, and adding copper flashing.

 

 

Daniel Zimmerman House at 1503 Cambridge

The Daniel Zimmerman House at 1503 Cambridge Road, a Georgian style home, was built in 1902.  The symmetrical Georgian plan of red brick with traditional white trim and green shutters is a good example of this popular style.  The house was constructed for Daniel F. Zimmerman, a partner in Zimmerman and McOmber, loan agents.  The builder was Eugene Hall, who lived at nearby 1430 Cambridge and was the son of Olivia and Israel Hall who subdivided the North Burns Park neighborhood.  The Preservation Award was given to Ellen and Steve Ramsburgh in 2007.

 

 

 

J.D. Baldwin House at 1530 Hill

The J.D. Baldwin House at 1530 Hill Street, a beloved landmark, is at the corner of Hill and Washtenaw.  This 1840s stucco over brick Greek Revival house is in the Washtenaw/Hill Historic District.  A rehabilitation award was given to Dr. Timothy Wang in 2008 for restoration of the stucco (scored to resemble stone) and the original windows, replanted landscaping, adding lights, an iron fence and maintaining this significant historic house.

 

 

 

Roy Cowden House at 1016 Olivia

The Roy Cowden House at 1016 Olivia Avenue, is an Arts and Crafts house with battered windows and doorway.  It was built in 1913 for Roy W. Cowden, who began as a UM Instructor in Rhetoric and later was Director of the Avery and Julie Hopwood Awards in Creative Writing.  A Preservation Award was given to Gwen and John Nystuen in 2008.  The Nystuens have lived here since 1963 and are the 3rd owners of this house.

 

 

 

A. S. Berry House at 929 Olivia

The A. S. Berry House at 929 Olivia dates from as early as 1894 and was occupied by the A.S. Berry family from the 1890s until 1920.  It is a Colonial Revival with several additions, all within the spirit of the original.  Professor Richard Emmons lived here in the 1940s.  Ellwood and Michelle Derr received a Preservation Award in 2009 for their careful maintenance of this house.  Professor Derr was a member of the UM Music Faculty and Mrs. Derr is a former singer and realtor with Reinhart Realty.

 

 

 

Thomas Smurthwaite House at 916 Olivia

The Thomas Smurthwaite House at 916 Olivia, built about 1900, is another example of the Colonial Revival style.  Thomas Smurthwaite, farmer, is listed as the first occupant.  A Preservation Award was given in 2009 to the current owner, Ann E. Larimore, Professor Emerita of Geography and Women’s Studies.

 

 

 

 

Louis Strauss House at 1601 Cambridge

The Louis Strauss House at 1601 Cambridge was designed and built by Albert Kahn in  1913 for Professor Louis Strauss and his wife, Elsa.  Professor Strauss was a cousin of the famous architect.  The house is in the Craftsman style and has beautifully detailed interior woodwork.  Barbara and David Copi received the Preservation Award in 2009 for their stewardship of this house.

 

 

 

 

Charles Tilden House at 1619 Cambridge

The Charles Tilden House at 1619 Cambridge was built in 1909 for Professor Charles Tilden, UM Engineering Department.  It is a stucco Craftsman style house with Asian elements and a red tile roof.  Paul Bronstein and Donna Sell received a Preservation Award in 2009.

 

 

 

 

 

Clara and William Wait House at 1706 Cambridge

The Clara and William Wait House at 1706 Cambridge was built in 1908.  Dr. Wait was Associate Professor of Modern Languages.  Eric and Kris Meves have lived in and maintained this house since 1986 and received a Preservation Award for their efforts in 2009.

 

 

 

 

 

Caroline Crocker House at 1722 Cambridge

The Caroline Crocker House at 1722 Cambridge was built in 1904 in the Shingle Style, which was popular at the turn of the century.  Alice Crocker Lloyd, UM Dean of Women, lived with her mother until 1926.  Professor Richard Boys of the UM English Department lived here until 1996.  Guests at the home included the playwright Arthur Miller and the poet Carl Sandberg.  Its gambrel roof, eyebrow dormers, and original six-over-two windows are carefully maintained by David and Cyntha Burgoyne who received the Preservation Award in 2010.

 

 

 

William P. James House at 1102 Olivia

The Arts and Crafts style house at 1102 Olivia was built in 1917 by contractor William P. James, who came from England in 1883 to Ann Arbor to learn the building trade.  By the early 1890s he had started his own building company and constructed many residences and fraternity house throughout Ann Arbor.   Michael Byers and Susan Hutton converted the house back to a single family home, restored the original sleeping porch widows as well as all the other original windows in the house and had new custom wood storm windows made.  They were given a Rehabilitation Award in 2010 for their efforts to restore the house to its original condition.

 

 

Clyde & Maude Keppels House at 1515 Cambridge

1515 Cambridge Road is a Colonial Revival style house built in 1927 for Clyde & Maude Keppels.  It was built of stucco and brick and said to be a fireproof house.  Marcia and Jeff DeBoer who won a Preservation Award for their careful work in 2011 did meticulous restoration of windows and interior plaster reliefs.