This classic Arts and Crafts two-flat was constructed in 1912, after the permit application on May 20. The original owner was John M. Stodge. He hired architect Charles Strandel to design the apartments and Axel Ostrand to build it. The current owners purchased it in the 1990s because of its gracious living space. When it was built, the block was filled with older wooden and brick homes that had been built before the turn of the century. This building represented a new style of living in the urban Edgewater that developed when the “L” was constructed on the embankment in 1908.
The modern lines of the building are visible from the street. The tapered columns are a recognizable Arts and Crafts design element at the entrance. The porch across the front is in the shed design that was used on Arts and Crafts buildings. In the case of this building the second floor roof of the porch appears to be an addition which causes speculation that the porches were originally open like balconies, perhaps with an awning roof.
The entrance foyer features a tile floor designed like a carpet. The oak newel post and hand railing and oak used in the wainscoting are beautiful details seen from the foyer. At the second floor landing is a doorway to a small open porch and the main door to the apartment which you will view. In this hallway are three stained glass windows with leaf pattern.
This home is a beautiful example of Arts and Crafts design with beech woodwork which has been stained dark in the front public rooms. Each doorway and window has crown moldings. In the reception hall there are four doors to the other parts of the apartment. In the living room there are beamed ceilings and classic green tile on the fireplace. The living room connects through French doors to the porch. Oak flooring has been added to the porch. The casement windows are in keeping with the time period.
Directly opposite the entrance are French doors opening into what must have been a sitting room. In this room are two doors, one (originally a closet) to the third floor studio and one to an interior hallway that connects to a bathroom and a bedroom. The bedroom has a bay window. A second bedroom is connected by a walk through closet to the first bedroom. These connections run parallel to the main hallway which connects the front reception area to the back of the apartment through the dining room.
In the back, there is third bedroom which served as the maid’s room and has the original corner sink. Next to that is a second full bath and then a sun porch with windows facing west and north. Back down the hall towards the reception area one of two doors to the kitchen which has been redesigned.
The kitchen has a loft ceiling with windows at the top that open from the studio above. The cabinets are pine, stained to match the original birch cabinet that formed part of the pantry. The counter tops are granite. The space that was once the pantry has been made into an eating area. Because it was once a pantry with a linoleum floor, maple flooring was added to match the original flooring in the rest of the kitchen. The glass and wood door opens into the dining room.
The ceiling in the dining room is beamed in a kind of grid pattern. The lights at the intersection of the grid had been removed. The light fixture is in the Art Deco style. The woodwork had once been painted black and has been stripped back to the original. The ribbon windows in the dining room are another element of Arts and Crafts design.
One of the long time owners of the building was still living there in 1957, when he had a ramp built to the side entrance. Since then, the home has been lived in by a motor cycle gang, antiques collectors and a carpenter, who did some restoration and repairs, including removal of the original slate roof. When this building was built, the home next door had been there since 1897 on one of Cochran’s most filled-in blocks. The design of this apartment building signaled a change in the life style and density for the area as well as an improvement in the building and construction methods. This building, a home for two families, was built with steel beams and was intended to last more than a century.