Gilbert m Simmons Memorial Library #74000093 on the National Register of Historic Places. It designed by Daniel H. Burnham and built as a donation to the city by Z G Simmons. It was dedicated May 30, 1900 to the memory of his son Gilbert M. Simmons.
Back in the early Spring Rappy (my greyhound) and I went to Library Park to make pictures. You see Library Park is one of the locations on the National Register of Historic Places in Kenosha. The library the Gilbert M. Simmons Memorial Library was added back in 1974. The Library Park Historic District including the library, historic homes, and St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church was added to the register in 1988. Library Park itself was added in 2000.
You can read about each home in more detail on this flyer by Kenosha Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. I’ll give just a small blurb in the comments on each photo. You can take a virtual tour of the interior of the library here at Kenosha Public Library website. Oh and hear a librarian tell of her encounters with ghosts in Simmons Library here on YouTube.
Now that I have information from the Kenosha History Center I see I missed some important homes and building in that historic district. I’ll go back some time soon and make it another post. Enjoy an sunny but cold early Spring day in the park.
The Urban J. Lewis house is a Queen Anne style home built in 1892. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places as part of the Library Park Historic District. Mr. Lewis was born in London and came to Kenosha in 1875 and was a banker with many other business interest. In 1920 it became the Hansen-Lendman Funeral Home is still that today.
The Volney French house was built in 1846. It is in the Greek Italianate Revival style. Volney French was one of the early settlers in Kenosha. He was a lawyer before 1841 and served as a county judge. Today it’s an office building.
The Lucien Scribner house was built in 1843. It’s in the Greek Revival style. Lucien Scribner only lived in the house for a short time but his widow lived there until 1878. It eventually became the home of the Pirsch family who were known for being makers of quality firetrucks. The Pirsch family lived there until 1987.
The Louis Theirs house is another beautifully maintained Queen Anne house. It was built in 1893. Mr. Theirs was born in Kenosha in 1858 he was a photographer and had a gallery in Kenosha. He had many business interests beyond that such as several successful farms in the area. He lived in this home until the 1930s.
Jacob Gottfredsen house was built 1869-71. It is another Italianate style home. Mr. Gottfredsen came to Kenosha in 1846 from Denmark. He owned a store and expanded into the brewery business.
Frederick J Gottfredsen house was built in 1888 and yet another beautiful Queen Ann home. Frederick joined his father Jacob (his house is just above) brewery. In 1890 the Gottfredsen brewery closed and Frederick went to manage the Pabst brewery in Milwaukee. Some Gottfredsen Brewery bottles were incorporated in the construction of the house.
Herman Reinhold house is an 1864 Greek Revival. Mr. Reinhold owned it until 1886. A prominent Kenosha physician and surgeon William H Saunders lived in the home until 1909. It was then purchased by the Lyman family.
Hale-Farr house was built about 1848 then remodeled and enlarged in 1890 to an Italianate style home. Samuel Hale was the owner of the original home. William Farr remodeled the home and lived there until 1923. Then it was the residence of Horace Johnson who invented the modern closed crotch underwear design for men used today. It was first used by the Kenosha Klosed Krotch Underwear Company that evolved into what is Jockey today. The home is now the Women’s Club of Kenosha and has been since 1923.