(2014 photo)

This elegant building displays the style and craftsmanship of the Arts and Crafts era. The size of the building indicates why this kind of apartment dwelling was considered to be grand in comparison to many single-family homes. One unit is about 3800 square feet. It was designed by A. Landagren and built in 1915-16 by Axel Ostrand at a cost of $30,000.

The original owner was W.R. Abbott. Because of this size, one would expect that these apartments might have been subdivided during the Depression, when building owners needed more income. To our good fortune, the elegance has been preserved and we have an opportunity to imagine what life in the city would be like in this grand living space.

The front entrance hall of the building is tiled in a neutral color almost to the cove ceiling. There is a door to the garden apartment and the door to the upper floors. We will be seeing the second floor unit. The hallway is large and decorated with an oak trim and wainscoting. The handrail is oak and the light fixtures are original.

The second floor unit opens into a large reception hall which opens directly into the living room. This room is a grand space with a full front sun porch, a brick fireplace in the north end bay and windows in the south end bay, which are covered. The sun porch has a tiled floor and a faucet for watering the plants that grew there. There are original light fixtures in this room and throughout the apartment.

From the reception hall, double French doors open into the dining room. There is a second set of French doors from the living room into the dining room. The size of the dining room is grand. Just off this room is the butler’s pantry in the original pine woodwork. At the end of the narrow room is a dry sink which is original to the home. The next room is the kitchen which has had some update is still in the configuration of the original. Along a hallway leading to the backdoor is the original built-in ice box. It has four doors and is used for storage. Off the back hallway is a laundry which was once the maid’s room.

Back into the main hall, you will walk to the back of the unit and see another room with a private bath which was used for live-in help. Then you will see the main full bath and another large bedroom. This room connects through a closet to a sitting room which was once a bedroom. A second door opens into a short hallway where there is another bedroom which we will not see. Once again, you will return to the front reception hall.

The woodwork in the apartment is in its original dark varnished finish. This dark finish was popular for many years, until the 1950s when blond wood became the fashion. With the dark finish, it is sometimes difficult to tell what the wood is - it might be mahogany or birch. The floors are oak except in the kitchen where they are maple.