609 W. Broadway

Overview

13

Owner

Charles and Dorothy (Reeves) Weiser

Address

609 W. Broadway Decorah, IA 52101

Year Built

1923

Architectural Style

Dutch Colonial

NRHP 1976 & DHPC Award 2018.

Altfillisch designed the home at 609 W. Broadway St. in 1923 for Charles J. Weiser, a Decorah banker. Weiser had grown up across the street in his parents’ mansion, which stood where the parking lot for First Lutheran Church is now located. The home’s architectural style is called Dutch Colonial. It was first popular in the U.S. in the 16- and 1700’s, then enjoyed a revival in the early 1900’s. This home has a number of Dutch Colonial features, including the barn-like gambrel roof (also called a dutch roof), with eaves overhanging the front porch, a highly symmetrical facade, a second story dormer with windows, and a prominent chimney. Notice that the window shutters have Dutch-theme cutouts.

The lot next door to the east was part of Weiser’s original yard, and had a tennis court on it. There is still a set of steep stairs leading from this lower lot up to the Weiser home. The sunroom visible on the east side of the home was originally an open air porch with awnings (see photo above for original design). The roof of that porch served as a balcony for an upstairs room. At some point the porch was enclosed and the balcony railing removed. The house early on was entered into a contest sponsored by “House Beautiful” magazine. The current owners have a poster made as part of the contest entry (see below).

Altfillisch’s homes often featured a fireplace and many built-ins, including separate His and Her closets in the master bedroom of this home. The owners  appreciate the abundance and placement of windows that make the house so light on the inside.

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