There are several homes in Edgewater designed by architect Myron Church of the firm Church & Jobson. Myron Church lived in Edgewater and is best known for the Gunder home in Berger Park known as the North Lakeside Cultural Center. The home at 5506 N. Magnolia was built in 1896 for N.E. Johnson. Noteworthy is the sidewalk just north of this property, built by the WPA in 1938. The WPA seal is clearly visible.

The house, which is on a stone foundation, has an interesting, sweeping roofline and two front dormers, both with pointed roofs. The cedar wood siding was added in a restoration project after previous siding deteriorated. The porch was rebuilt in the 1950s with a concrete base replacing a wooden structure, but the porch pillars are the same size and in the same location as the originals. The front door of oak is off to one side, allowing for a larger living room, and the front windows are original. The leaded glass oval window to the right of the door is in the Beaux Arts style. The inner front door has a beautiful Prairie style stained glass window.

The reception hall has an original window in a curving clear leaded glass design. In this hall you will see the screen dividing the staircase from the room. The original plans show a built-in bench below the screen, but it is not extant. On entering the living room, note the woodwork on the doorways and windows, which is a picture frame design with crown molding above. The unusual design of the windows repeats the design in the reception hall. Some of these leaded windows have been removed. To the left of the living room is the library, which is at the front of the house. The wood floors here have been replaced, as have all the floors in the residence. The originals were probably top nailed and had deteriorated beyond repair.

Adjoining the living room is the dining room. It features a beautiful period chandelier, which is not original. It also has a working fireplace on the west wall. There are very nice built-in cabinets on both sides of the fireplace. There are two symmetrical doors on the north wall of this room, both of which lead to the hallway. The hallway also has a very nice built-in cabinet. The hallway leads to the kitchen.

The large kitchen has been expanded by the current owners, who added to it on the south end, including a built-in bench and a seating area. Just beyond the bench is a stairway leading to the back yard. One highlight of the kitchen is a large skylight that a previous owner added. The kitchen has granite countertops and subway tiles for the backsplash. The stone on the island is marble and is set at a lower height to allow for rolling dough, which the owner uses for baking. The large fireclay sink is by Shaw Company, England. The kitchen cabinets by Plain & Fancy Company feature rippled glass. The room also contains a large Wolf stove.

The staircase leading to the second floor has a screen with original scrollwork. The stairs themselves are rebuilt, but with a period banister. At the top of the stairs is a bedroom – one of three on the second floor – and a bath that features subway tiles and an updated design. It also has the original heat vents.

The hallway on the second floor leads to the master bedroom at the front, east end of the house. It was typical for master bedrooms to be placed at the front of the house. This room shows the inside of the dormers that face the front of the house. The window in the south end of this room was added. The small room adjacent to the bedroom was originally the Sewing Room; the owner still uses it for clothing and ironing purposes. The door at the northeast corner of this room leads to the attic.