Merrill House

Wisconsin Historical Society, Wisconsin Architecture and History Inventory, J. Merrill House, Superior, Douglas, Wisconsin, reference number 17552.

Let me just start out by saying that this picture-perfect, magazine worthy house looks like it could be out of the Home Alone movie franchise—see the last photo.

Photo Source: Duluth Edina Realty

With its dignified and stately Colonial Revival appearance, it did not start out as such… the original windows were suggestive of the Georgian Revival style; the window mullions were 6 over 6. Regardless, the 6 over 1 windows look aptly appropriate, especially for Colonial Revival architecture, which is how this house exemplifies the style. The typical accoutrements were included: the afformentioned window mullions (even with the newer windows (6 over 1)), dentils, partial rounded portico with doric columns, and a unique dark brick belt line—not uncommon, yet not typical with EVERY colonial house. The simple subtleness paired with the landscape is what makes this home so elegant. One thing is for sure, the owners have done a stellar job with this beaut.

Wisconsin Historical Society, Wisconsin Architecture and History Inventory, J. Merrill House, Superior, Douglas, Wisconsin, reference number 17552.

Built in 1923 for J. Merrill and family, this comfortable, practical, and regal residence commands pride in the Billings Park neighborhood.

Located at 22 Billings Drive, Superior, WI

Update: Newton House

Photo Source: Superior Public Library

This photo depicts the early days of this now centennial house, built 1921. The photo is also a good indication of how the neighborhood was first planned and developed. There was no information on who the photographer was or the exact date that the photo was taken.

Notice the road was dirt before it was paved. The area definitely was and still is an “organic woodsy nature” enveloped reserve.

You can read more on the house and family via the link here: https://twinportspast.wordpress.com/2021/08/16/newton-house

Updated on 10/15/21 at 6:20AM & 6:40AM.

Update: Bemerich House


Photo Source: Superior Public Library

This photo depicts the early days of this almost centennial house, built 1925. The photo is also a good indication of how the neighborhood was first planned and developed. There was no information on who the photographer was or the exact date that the photo was taken.

You can read more on the house via the link here: https://twinportspast.wordpress.com/2021/08/21/bemerich-house

Update: Kimball House

Photo Source: Superior Public Library

According to the Superior Public Library: (with corrections made)

This house, located at 201 East 7th Street, was built for Nancy Kimball in 1898. Mrs. Kimball was the widow of William Kimball who had been part owner of the Peyton-Kimball-Barber Co.—company, which ran a sawmill on Connors Point. Mrs. Kimball could count herself among the old settlers of Superior, since she had arrived in town with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. J.A. Hinton, in 1854. Before she was married, Mrs. Kimball taught school and during this time, she became fluent in the Ojibwa language. Mrs. Kimball had this house built after her husband’s death, and celebrated its completion with a housewarming party during the 1898 Christmas–holiday season. The photo, taken in either 1936 or 1937, shows two of the Kimballs’ daughters in front of the house. Edna Kimball is standing in the front, and behind her are Jane and William Strickland; Edna’s sister and brother-in-law. The house is still standing.

Photo Source: Google

Update: Unidentified House

Photo Source: Superior Public Library

Here’s a photo of one of Superior’s Central Park grand dames, built 1894, and thankfully still standing after 127 years. The central front tower, balconies, porch, and cresting have since been removed—many years ago, yet the house is still identifiable as a Queen Anne Victorian. The original Lincoln School, built in either the late 1880s or 1890s, can be seen (right side) in the foreground.

You can read more on the house via the link here: https://twinportspast.wordpress.com/2020/07/06/bankers-row

Updated on 10/15/21 at 7:00AM.

Unknown House

Take note of the skintled bricks.

This rather unpretentious Tudor Revival hides in the woods within the same enclave as the other recently mentioned houses on St. Albans, albeit setback much further away from the road. This is the last of the historic homes on the peninsula.

These photos are from when the property was for sale. https://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/16-Saint-Albans-Rd_Superior_WI_54880_M84889-59759

Living Room
Formal Dining Room
Dry Pass/Service Pantry
Kitchen
Stair Hall/Foyer
Master Bedroom

There are great views of the western hillside, Spirit Mountain, and St. Louis River, too.

Built in 1919, this 4 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom, with single fireplace “cottage” covers 2,720 sqft of practical living space on under two acres of mostly private woods. It charms its occupants and guests with faux support wood beams in the living room, natural woodwork with beautiful hardwood floors (whether refinished or not), and old growth surrounding hardwoods. Again, here’s another house that deserves all of the proper tender-loving-care it can receive.

Updated on 10/14/21 at 10:30AM.

Sincock House

Wisconsin Historical Society, Wisconsin Architecture and History Inventory, Sincock House, Superior, Douglas, Wisconsin, Reference Number 17779.

Although not technically the original owners last name, it very well could be if the property has been in the family since it was built—this I do not know.

What I do know is that the house was built in 1937 and was designed by an unknown architect or firm. This land was also part of George Newton’s holdings, and developed under the George Newton Real Estate Firm. The house was more than likely designed by one of Superior’s venerable architects.

Wisconsin Historical Society, Wisconsin Architecture and History Inventory, Sincock House, Superior, Douglas, Wisconsin, Reference Number 17779.

Designed in a perfect match for the land, due to the organic nature of the architecture, this Tudor Revival exhibits the usual accoutrements (brick, stucco and false half timbering), with a unique door surround to include side blocks constructed of brick—in a descending outward fashion.

A traditional English 2-center archway with side block.
Photo Credit: Tudor Artisans

There’s at least 3 to 4 bedrooms and 2 or 2.5 bathrooms, of which, one is a lavatory/powder room. The chimney is of special interest, due to its design and proportions (I will have to obtain a photo:).

Unknown House

Photo Source: Google

Here’s another historic house at the Woodstock subdivision of Billings Park; an idyllic Tudor Revival “cottage” steeped in unique history. When a For Sale By Owner sign appeared on the front lawn, I had interested buyers who wanted to view the property as soon as possible . . . and along came the history. Unfortunately, my buyers lost out on this gem.

At first glance, it appears there’s no garage, but it’s tucked behind the house on the lower side that slopes towards the inlet bay. The interior was a hoarders paradise; filled with everything imaginable, or rather the unimaginable! There was and possibly still is garbage galore . . . multiple dumpsters have been used to rid the house since springtime of last year.

Built in the early 1920s; if I’m not mistaken, it was built in 1922 . . . for a dentist who went overboard with the finishing touches. Supposedly, he went broke after he chose the imported red Spanish floor tiles that were used throughout the main floor. The second family that had purchased the house from the dentist, owned it until mid-January of this year. The one son, who was employed in mining, either inherited or bought the house from his parents in the 90s, who by that time, were older. Prior to the son’s ownership, the house was re-stuccoed, which it needs to be redone again. Fast forward to last year to when the son passed away, and the brother inherited the property, a new cedar shingle roof was installed.

Years ago, the mother purchased beautiful antique Russian light fixtures, which, to my knowledge were still in the house when the property sale occurred. The living room has beautiful arched leaded glass french doors and a quaint fireplace that sets the mood for such a space.

Since there’s no documented historical information on the property, I think it’s safe to assume that the land was also apart of George Newton’s real estate land holdings, more specifically (and previously mentioned), the land holdings of this particular development.

The exterior appearance is rather similar to one of my favorite house plans that was sold through the Gordon Van Tine catalog, although the interior layout is different. Included are three promotional ads from 1929 to about 1933.

Photo Source: antiquehome.org
Photo is from a digital catalog.
Photo is from the Gordan Van Tine digital catalog.

Additional Photos

Photo Source: Google
Photo Source: Google
Photo Source: Google
Photo Source: Google
Photo Source: Google

My hope is that the house will be properly restored. Until then, we shall wait.