Built in 1907, this home is the epitome of the post-Victorian era design aesthetic. The original owner’s name was Koch. The Foursquare was a new and uniquely American style, focused on dignified self-containment. Builders in the early 20th century referred to this style as truly American, a square type of modern home, massive and conservative. Whether plain or embellished with Prairie School, Arts and Crafts, or Colonial Revival details, the Foursquare (1895–1929) was an economical house to build – and well suited to smaller lots, prefab parts, and the housing boom.

This classic Foursquare embodies many of the hallmarks we associate with this style typology. From its boxy style, hipped roof, wide front porch and large windows, to its quiet, almost vernacular styling, Foursquares seemed to spring up almost overnight. There were none in 1890 and, by 1910, thousands had been built.

Typical of Foursquares, the wide front porch of 1640 W. Rascher Avenue spans the entire width of the house, and is embellished with dentil molding beneath its deep eave. While the pillars are not original, they are consistent with the home’s style and simplicity. The balustrade has been replaced and is reminiscent of a white picket fence. The main front window is comprised of a stationary center pane accented with a beveled, leaded glass window above and flanked with double hung sash windows. The door and window surrounds are topped off with Tuscan order crown moldings. The home is clad in a light grey vinyl siding with white trim. The current owners have installed ashlar cut raised landscape beds, c. 2015.

The main level of the home maintains its original floor plan, with updates conducive to contemporary living. Original trim is painted white, and floors are maple throughout – original in the entry and living room and newer in dining and kitchen spaces. The living room is separated from the dining room with original yellow pine pocket doors. The dining room features a bay window on the east, and has been opened up to the kitchen when it was updated, c. 2015. Built-ins were popular enhancements in the early 20th century, and this home does not disappoint. An original buffet with diamond pattern leaded glass dominates the north wall, grounding the space with vintage charm. A bedroom addition, accessible through the dining area, was added to the rear of the home in the 1950s.

The kitchen (originally a galley style) update is sympathetic to the style, age and integrity of the home. A dormant chimney that ran from the basement through the roof line was removed to accommodate the remodel. From the white, shaker style cabinets, to the grey-blue classic subway tile motif backsplash – all is evocative of classic American style. The owners installed a tin ceiling above the island and capped the cabinets with a handsome crown to replicate the crown trims on the first floor.

An original mission influenced stairwell, with square balusters, newel post and contoured handrail, leads to the second floor. The stair treads and risers sport a wonderful vintage patina. Second floor is typical of the Foursquare style with four bedrooms and one bath. The painted, five-panel pine doors, trims and baseboards are original, along with the original maple floors. The spacious bathroom was remodeled to echo the home’s period – vintage inspired marble flooring, classic white subway tiles, two pedestal sinks and jade green accents are congruous with the home’s style.

The third level is a wonderful surprise, with stairwell continuation, including three ball capped newel posts. There are three bedrooms tucked into the roofline – each carefully fitted into a dormer. This level maintains a high level of originality, with five-panel oak doors and trim, 2” wood flooring, and sloping ceiling profiles.