The L. L. Steward House – its history and restoration
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L. L. Steward
The house’s first owner,Louis Lee Steward, was an early Arizona teacher, cattleman, cotton farmer and organizer of the Citizen’s State Bank in Phoenix. Steward was a campaign manager for Henry Fountain Ashurst in his 1912 election to the U. S. Senate.
The LL Steward home was built by Southwestern Building & Investment Co. as a residence for its president, LL Steward, in 1914. Over the following decades, the structure has served as private residence, rooming house, and general office space — with each incarnation creating a further departure from the original design.
We’ve restored the home to its former glory after extensively researching public records and interviewing folks connected to the building’s past.
LL Steward, front left, probably at Citizens State Bank in Phoenix, of which he was majority stockholder, incorporator (in 1914) and cashier. Photo courtesy of his granddaughter, Patricia Steward, owner and restorer of the historic 1905 Muheim building housing the Stock Exchange Restaurant in Bisbee, Arizona
Click on the boxes below
for more about L. L. Steward
LL Steward Bio (1930 AZ State Archives)
Louis Lee Steward
State Archives (History of Arizona – Biography VIII 1930)
Louis L. Steward has long held a prominent place in the banking circles of Phoenix, where has had served as cashier of the Citizens State Bank for the past fifteen years. A man of stanch integrity, good business judgment and fine personality, he commands a public confidence and stands among the solid and substantial men of Phoenix. Mr. Steward was born on the fifth day of December, 1880, in Cedar County, Missouri, and is a son of George and Teressa (Williams) Steward, the former of whom was engaged in farming in that state for many years. Louis L. Steward attended the public schools of his home neighborhood and completed his education in Weaubleau Christian College, at Weaubleau, Missouri, after which he engaged in educational work, teaching in the schools of his native state until 1909, when he came to Arizona. He taught school in this state for a short time and then turned his attention to the cattle business, in which he met a fine measure of success. He acquired valuable ranch interests and during the subsequent years has given considerable attention to farming, now having sixteen hundred acres of land in cotton. In 1914 Mr. Steward came to Phoenix and organized and incorporated the Citizens State Bank, of which he was elected cashier, which position he has held to the present time. He has devoted his attention closely to the interests of this institution and has the satisfaction of seeing it develop into one of the strong and influential banks of this city. In 1920, Mr. Steward also engaged in the insurance business, under the name of the Citizens Insurance Agency, which has proven a very successful and steadily growing concern. Mr. Steward was united in Marriage to Mrs. Mary Russell Peabody, a daughter of Edward and Ionia Russell, of Kansas, in which state she was born and reared. Her father was active in public affairs in Kansas and his portrait now hangs in the hall of fame in the capitol of that state. By a former marriage, Mrs. Steward is the mother of a son, Russell Peabody, now thirty years of age, who is married and is associated with Mr. Steward in the insurance business. Mr. and Mrs. Steward are the parents of a son, Louis L., Jr., sixteen years of age and who is attending New Mexico Military Institute at Roswell, New Mexico. Mr. Steward is a member of Arizona Lodge No. 2, F. & A. M.; Phoenix Chapter No. 1, R. A. M.; Phoenix Commandery No. 3, K. T., and El Zaribah Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S. Mrs. Steward is a member of the First Church of Christ, Scientist. A man of earnest purpose and straightforward manner, Mr. Steward’s life has been governed by right principals and he has been loyal to the highest obligations of citizenship, standing consistently for all that is best in the life of his community, and has shown himself well worthy of the high place which he holds in public regard.
LL Steward Obituary (Phoenix Gazette, June 30,1960)
L. L. Steward Sr., Pioneer Rancher, Builder Dies
The Phoenix Gazette
Thursday, June 30, 1960
L. L. Steward Sr, one of the Phoenix area’s pioneer builders and developers, died last night in Memorial Hospital after a short illness. Private funeral services will be held tomorrow
Mr. Steward, 79, was born in Stockton, Mo., and was educated at the University of Arizona. He first came to Arizona as the only schoolteacher at remote, lonely Lee’s Ferry, 5 miles upstream from the Navajo Bridge which now crosses Marble Canyon. He taught there during the school years of 1905 and 1906, and recalled years later that a majority of children were members of one pioneer Mormon family named Emmett.
After that, Mr. Steward became a cowboy and then general range manager for one of the largest cattle ranches in the nation, the vast Bar Z Cattle Co., with headquarters in Salt Lake City. The outfits principal range was all of the land north of the Grand Canyon now included in the Kaibab National Forest.
Attorney for the Bar Z in Arizona was a young Flagstaff attorney, Henry Fountain Ashurst. They became close friends, and in 1911, Mr. Steward was Ashurst’s campaign manager as the articulate young lawyer sought election as Arizona’s first Democrat to be U. S. Senator.
Mr. Steward had moved to Phoenix in 1910, where for the last 50 years he was active as a developer, anticipating great growth at an early day. In recent years, he has been a real estate broker, insurance agent, and in property management.
Even before Arizona won statehood in 1912 Mr. Steward subdivided farm land on what was the edge of the city in what became known as the Story Addition, building more than 100 new homes for newcomers attracted to Phoenix by news of statehood. That tract is centered around Kenilworth School.
Mr. Steward was head of the Southwest Building and Loan Co., a director and principal stockholder of the Citizens State Bank, at one time was a loan officer for the Home Owners Loan Corp., and was head of the Federal Public Housing Administration during World War II.
He was a 32nd degree Mason, member of Knights Templar, and a Shriner. Mr. Steward attended Unity Truth Center.
Private funeral services will be followed by cremation. Arrangements are being made by Mercer Mortuary.
The family has requested donations to charitable organizations for children in lieu of other memorial remembrances.
Survivors include his wife, Mary R. Steward, 111 W. Almeria; a son, L. L. Steward Jr., Phoenix; a stepson, Russell Peabody, Phoenix; two brothers, Earl C. and Don C. Steward, both of Phoenix; five grandchildren; and two cousins, Dr. BL Steward, Coolidge, and Dr. Charles L. Nevins, Phoenix.obituo
CBN in the LL Steward house
In 1996, we purchased and moved our janitorial services office to the historic 1914 L. L. Steward House, just south of I-10 in downtown Phoenix’s Roosevelt Historic District. The house’s “tasteful Victorian massing and Prairie School design elements” create an elegant composition. This led to its citation as a “significant streetscape element” in the 1983 application for National historic status for the Roosevelt neighborhood.
We feel that, by restoring the house, we’ve added that much more to Phoenix’s somewhat meager catalog of period architecture.
Drop in for a tour during business hours. Bob will be happy to show you around.
Though built for Steward (then president of the company), the house appeared in this ad (bottom house) in the Arizona Republican, February 8, 1914; the other two homes pictured were available.
Click on boxes for more details; click on photos for full-size images
LL Steward House, newly constructed in 1914
As best we can determine, three sets of French doors (or a combination of doors and sidelights) originally graced the house:
- At the rear of the parlor, opening onto the back garden. The original opening went to floor level (as evidenced by uncut bricks) and is of different dimensions than the front window on the opposite wall in an otherwise symmetrical room.
- Between the dining room and the west pergola, likely facing out to a “porte cochere” (literally, coach door) over the drive. The house’s original brick wall does not exist along the line between the pergola and the dining room, and would have been difficult to remove. The only explanation we can offer is that some combination of French doors or doors and floor-to-ceiling windows existed to allow light and ventilation through the front of the house.
- Between the dining room and the foyer. A wall with doorway was added in 1947, so no original wall existed; some sort of separation would have been needed between dining room and foyer.
The center/rear of the house (north of the staircase) has been altered to the point that it is impossible to determine the locations of original features or uses. We have assumed a maid’s quarters?
The 1915 Sanborn Insurance Map shows a one story garage on the back (northwest) corner of the lot. The L. L. Steward house and the house on the corner of 5th Avenue and Roosevelt (now occupied by the Arizona Theater Company) are the only buildings shown on this side of the block.
The post-war housing boom - the Steward house converted to apartments
In 1947, the original house was purchased by Rudolph and Mary Schweinfurth and converted into apartments (two on the first floor, three on the second).
A roughly 6′ by 10′ two-story addition in the northeast corner accommodated one new bathroom per floor. The original one-over-one double hung window to the north of the fireplace was replaced with a door. Upstairs, the wall between the east bedroom and its sleeping porch was removed, resulting in a 3″ to 4″ sag in the ceiling (the joists run north and south, a 24 foot span; there is an original truss in the attic 8 feet north of the south wall, but nothing comparable over the wall that was removed). A wall was then constructed about 4 feet south of the former wall, under the already sagging ceiling.
The western face of the southwest downstairs corner (the pergola along the drive) was enclosed, as were the two upstairs sleeping porches. Bathrooms were added in the utility porch and the southwest upstairs bedroom closet.
The 1947 Sanborn map shows the garage as a 2 story; the bottom floor (at least) was converted to an apartment in 1960 (an exterior staircase was either rebuilt or added). Damaged by a fire, the entire structure was demolished during the 1985 remodel.
In 1985, the house was converted to an office building
In 1985, the L. L. Steward house underwent another conversion, this time to a multi-suite office building. Click here for the photos and floor plans, donated by architect Margy Chrisney.
- All of the existing bathrooms were removed (the building was entirely re-plumbed), and two new restrooms, one with a shower, were added along the middle of the downstairs north wall (at the north end of the center hallway).
- A wall was added near the north end of the original parlor to create a hallway.
- The original northwest sleeping porch (2nd floor) was divided into two smallish offices.
- Kitchen cabinets were removed.
- The wall between the original kitchen and the utility porch moved 18″ south.
- The entire northwest corner was reconfigured.
- The pergola at the southwest corner (enclosed in 1947) was turned into a storage closet.
- Various air conditioning and plumbing chases were added.
- Carpet was glued down.
- Popcorn applied to ceilings.
- Fluorescent lights were added.
- The continuation of the pergola to the west end of the house was roofed over, either during this remodel or earlier.
All this “progress” had to be reversed when we began our restoration!
Early tenants of the office suites were Margy Chrisney, A.I.A. (building co-owner and architect of the remodel), and Congressman Mo Udall.
The two story carriage house/garage at the northwest corner of the property is represented as a box at the upper left corner of the lot on the Roosevelt Neighborhood Map. A 1960 permit shows the first floor of the garage being converted to apartments. Sometime prior to the 1985 remodel, it was gutted by fire. It was demolished as part of the remodel.
The current restoration envisions taking the L. L. Steward House as close to its 1914 origin as feasible.
We’ve removed 1947 and 1985 walls and doorways (rerouting a good deal more plumbing, electrical and ventilation than anticipated); removed popcorn ceilings and fluorescent lights; restored and hung 1910 to1915 vintage light fixtures; sistered in floor joists; added a 10 inch glue-lam beam to firm up the upstairs ceiling where an original load-bearing wall was removed (in 1947?); stripped, patched, sanded and refinished floors (oak downstairs, fir upstairs); and stripped wood trim (generally, the public areas featured stained wood, the family areas painted). And lots of plaster.
In the northeast (back) corner, we’ve removed the 1947 door and replaced it with a salvaged window of the same dimensions and style as the original, and added a new (to us) back door in place of the window in the 1947-added bath; a new pergola graces the back door, constructed of the same dimension timbers as the original front pergola.
Recently, we’ve removed the roof from the southwest (front) pergola and demolished the closet along the driveway (west) wing of the pergola (the roof was added and the closet enclosed in 1947), and re-created the French doors between the dining room and the west wing of the pergola. Soon, we’ll re-create the (most likely) French doors between the dining room and the foyer, and install a salvaged period door and sidelights in place of the original door and sidelights (or French doors) leading from the parlor to the back garden (now via the 1947 addition).
On the exterior, with the help of an Exterior Rehabilitation Grant from the City of Phoenix, we’ve re-roofed (dimensional shingles similar in color to the original cedar), repaired stucco and woodwork, re-painted, and stripped and stained the original front door. Major restoration work went into woodwork, hardware and textured stucco to bring the restored porch and wrap-around pergola back to their original appearance and function. A new beadboard ceiling replaces the drywall in the main porch, and prairie-style lighting completes the picture.
KTVK TV5 ad for Hill Street Blues, shot at the “Tune Us Inn”
In the late ’80s, a humorous commercial announcing TV5’s local syndication of “Hill Street Blues” was shot on the front porch of the Steward house. The ad featured a blues singer complete with guitar and harmonica sitting on the front steps of the “Tune Us Inn”.
We have tried to find a copy of the ad, but back then KPHO didn’t archive their own ads, and no copies seem to have survived. We did, however, manage to lay our hands on the original storyboards. Click here to see the full set of storyboards.
Our research on ownership, and a complete list of owners
Returning the L. L. Steward House to its Former Glory
(Narrative primarily by Cher Bethancourt)
In an effort to verify our suppositions about the original form, function, and appearance of the building, we have searched public archives and attempted to contact previous owners of the property (and their descendants), searching for any pre-war documentation or photographs of the building:
L. L. & Mary Steward – March 9 1914
There is considerable information to be found on the Steward family, due in part to his relatively high profile and also to the less popular spelling of L. L.’s surname. However, there were few descendants, and so far none has been much help in locating any extant photographs of either the 522 house or of Mr. Steward himself.
Russell Peabody was the son of Mary Peabody, and L. L. Steward’s stepson. We did track down one of Mr. Peabody’s nieces, Ms. Mary Matilsky, living in Peoria, AZ. She did not have any documentation of the 522 Bldg, but connected me with Russell’s son, Chuck Peabody, an insurance agent in Phoenix. Bob Croft had a brief meeting with Chuck at a north Phoenix yard sale in the Fall of 2006. Chuck stated that he was quite certain that he did not have any photos of the 522 residence, and was pretty sure that no one else in the family did either.
L. L. Steward Jr. was referenced as a delegate to the 1956 Democratic National Convention from Arizona
Thomas & Annie Tayrien – March 8, 1926
When doing an internet search for the name Tayrien along with the locator of Phoenix, I pulled the name of David Tayrien, of Mesa car insurance – Arizona.
As it turned out, David no longer lives in Arizona, but has moved his practice to Oklahoma. He had the telephone number of, and was kind enough to refer me to his sister, Jacque (“the genealogist fo the family”).
After several attempts, I was able to reach Jacque, who told me that she was in the middle of remodeling her kitchen, and all of the old family photographs were beneath the items she had removed from the kitchen prior to the repairs. She promised to get back to me as soon as she was able to get to the photos.
I called back several weeks later, and was lucky enough to have called while Jacque was entertaining her mother, visiting from Salt Lake City, who “should have a better handle on whether the family had ever lived on Roosevelt St.”.
Unfortunately, Jacque’s mom did not recall any such thing. I e-mailed photos of the 522 building to her, but the images did not jog her memory of any old family photos.
Dr. Richard Tayrien
I also discovered an internet link to a Dr. Richard Tayrien, who practiced at St. Joseph’s Hospital.
I spoke with his receptionist, Carmen, in mid November. She informed me that Dr. Tayrien was out of town and would be until December 14. I called back several times, reaching her again on December 26, only to be told that he was again out of town and would return on January 2, 2007, at which time she (Carmen) would be unavailable. She promised to put us together on her return, January 8.
Carmen did inform me that Dr. Tayrien had commented that he did not believe that he had any old family photos, and did not recall any mention of an old house on Roosevelt as being in his family history.
1926 Phoenix City Directory
Tayrien Thos (Annie) h 522 W, Roosevelt
Dr. E. L. & Evaline C. Hicks – August 27, 1928
Other than the Stewards, the Hicks’ seem to be the highest profile owners. Dr. Hicks (a medical examiner employed by several insurance companies) moved here from New York City, where he lived, according to the 1910 census, in a home just off Central Park, between the American Museum of Natural History and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He was a graduate of New York University’s medical program.
Ernest arrived in Phoenix shortly after completing the construction and staffing of a hospital in Tampico, Mexico for Standard Oil Co. This project was completed about the time his brother, Clarence, was employed by Standard Oil. We have a copy of the ships manifest listing U. S. citizens.
History of Arizona – Biographical – Volume IV (1930 ed.)
The article indicates that Dr. & Mrs. Hicks had “no children of their own, but have reared four children”. One would assume they were adopted; judging by his date of birth and the date of his move to Arizona, the children would most likely have been left as adults in New York.
The 1920 Census indicates that Dr. & Mrs. Hicks living at 520 W. Portland with Mrs. Hicks’ sister and her husband (John and Pauline Kellogg) along with a Bradford Bailey, six years of age, named as a “nephew” of the Kelloggs. No further information has been found on Bradford.
1926 Phoenix City Directory
Ernest L (Evaline) phys 125 W. Monroe R 137 325 E. Portland
The 1930 census shows Dr. & Mrs. Hicks living
1931 Phoenix City Directory
Ernest L. (Evaline C.) phys h 522 W. Roosevelt
1938 Phoenix City Directory
Hicks Ernest L (Evaline C) physician and surgeon Physicians Bldg 125 W. Monroe Tel 4-2500 h522 W. Roosevelt Tel 3-3822
May 27, 1942 – AZ State Dept of Health – Death Certificate
May 31, 1942 – Obituary – AZ Republic
Dr. Hicks was survived by his wife, Evaline, who also passed within a couple years, and his brother, Clarence J. Hicks, who was involved in Industrial Relations, most notably working with John D. Rockefeller and Standard Oil Co. Clarence was a published author in his field of expertise, and established trusts to finance scholarships at several eastern universities, including:
Queens University (Ottawa)
The Clarence J. Hicks Fellowship in Industrial Relations was founded by friends of the late Clarence J. Hicks, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Industrial Relations Counselors Inc., New York City, and pioneer in the field of industrial relations through whose leadership and assistance the Industrial Relations Section was established at Queen’s University in 1937. The fellowship is awarded annually for graduate study or research in industrial relations at Queen’s University. (Value varies)
Clarence J. Hicks Memorial Fellowship in Industrial Relations. Founded in 1946 by the trustees of Industrial Relations Counselors, Inc., and derived from the gifts of individuals and corporations in recognition of the vision and leadership of the late Clarence J. Hicks in promoting better teaching, research, and practice in the profession of industrial relations.
The purpose of this fellowship is to enable a qualified individual to undertake the study of industrial relations in accordance with a program approved by the director of the Industrial Relations Section and, preferably, to allow the fellow to divide time between study and research at Princeton and field work in industry.
Evaline Hicks – November, 1942
After Dr. Hicks’ passing, Evaline moved to 310 E. Coronado, near the Phoenix Public Library (now the Phoenix Art Museum). Evaline passed within a couple years of her husband.
Phoenix City Directory
Hicks, Evaline C Mrs. R310 E. Coronado Rd
S. F. & Mata Isley – April 9, 1943
Mata Isley – October 4, 1944
Margaret Selby – April 24, 1945
Rudolph & Mary Schweinfurth – May 22, 1947
1948-49 Phoenix City Directory
Chicagoan Hotel Rudolph Schweinfurth mgr 522 W. Roosevelt
We have been unable, to this point, to uncover any information on either the Isleys or on Ms. Selby. Very little information is extant on the Schweinfurths.
We felt there was not much reason to contact the owners after the conversion of the structure to multi-tenant status; it seemed highly unlikely that any would have historic photographs of the building.
No attempts were made to contact these owners, other than a descendent of Clifford and Sarah Arnold, who we were told (incorrectly) possessed video footage from a commercial aired on KTVK, Channel 5 advertising the airing of syndicated “Hill Street Blues” segments. The commercial was shot using the newly renovated Steward house as a backdrop.
1956 Phoenix City Directory
The 1956 Phoenix City Directory lists the following for 522 W. Roosevelt:
#1 Passmore James AL 4-8935
#2 Devereaux C E
#4 Collings Collette AL 2-3745
History of Ownership of the Steward House
L. L. & Mary Steward / March 9 1915
Quit Claimed to Annie Tayrien / May 16, 1928
E. L. & Evaline Hicks / August 27, 1928
Evaline Hicks / November, 1942
S. F. & Mata Isley / April 9, 1943
Mata Isley / October 4, 1944
Margaret Selby / April 24, 1945
Rudolph & Mary Schweinfurth /May 22, 1947
James & Lillian Pasmore / October 18, 1949
Otto & May Van Duyne / April 7, 1954
Lillian Pasmore / None listed
Tracy & Dorothy Williams
and Paul & Beth Stansbury / December 22, 1958
Floy Bradley / January 4, 1960
Quit claim to Williams / Stansbury /January 4, 1960
Charles & Marjorie Carlisle / August 12, 1964
Clifford & Sarah Arnold / November 4, 1966
Landsakes, Inc. / October, 30, 1970
Quit Claimed to C. & S. Arnold / None listed
Robert & Ruby Day / November 13, 1970
D. P. Galbreath / March 18, 1971
Robert Kay / August 2, 1971
Cecil L. Coker / August 30, 1971
Ted & Pat King / October 15, 1971
American Housing, Inc. / December 17, 1971
Louis & Roca / August 10, 1972
Richard & Katherine Wall / February 19, 1974
Arnolds to Don & Helen Harrison / July 16, 1982
Robert Everhart & Jerry Smithson / September 27, 1983
Quit Claim to D. & H. Harrison / June 11, 1984
Jacqueline Rich & Mary Chrisney / October 1, 1984
Jackie Rich / March 31, 1991
Charles Aldini /January 30, 1991
Robert A. Croft / January 26, 1996
Current Floor plans
The current floor plan is close to the original 1914 layout. Note the French doors on opposing walls in the Dining Room, and the Kitchenette at the north end of the Parlor, added in the 1947 renovation as an apartment house.
“Roosevelt Neighborhood Multiple Resource Area”
The Steward house was catalogued as part of The “Arizona State Historic Property Inventory”, performed in 1984 to determine the eligibility of the Roosevelt Neighborhood as a Federal Historical District, (there being no program in place for local districts at that time).
The LL Steward House and the Roosevelt Neighborhood
The Roosevelt Neighborhood
In 1982-83 documentation assembled by a team of local volunteers and architect Gerald A. Doyle led to the Roosevelt Neighborhood’s designation as Phoenix’s first historical district.
The neighborhood map and individual property inventory indicate the L. L. Steward house is eligible for inclusion on the National Historic Register, the only such building on the block.
The Roosevelt Neighborhood’s Significance to Phoenix
As with other historic districts in the city, the development of the Roosevelt Neighborhood provides physical expression of the early growth of Phoenix. Within it are buildings which are both historically and architecturally important because they represent many important milestones in the evolution of our present community. From its rise as an affluent “streetcar suburb”, to its development associated with early tourism, to its designation as the first historic district in Phoenix, the Roosevelt Neighborhood continues to play a significant role in the history of Phoenix. As an intact collection of early twentieth century architecture, it contributes to the visual diversity and character of the historic heart of our community.
Arizona State Historical Property Inventory
The Arizona State Historic Property Inventory was performed to determine the eligibility of the Roosevelt Neighborhood as a Federal Historical District (there being no program in place for local districts at that time).
The study performed by AIA architect and ASU architecture instructor Gerald A. Doyle was instrumental in qualifying Roosevelt, which subsequently became Phoenix’s first historic district.
The two-story, stuccoed brick Steward House tastefully combines Victorian massing with Prairie School design elements to create an elegant architectural composition. The main portion of the irregularly shaped house is covered by a side-spreading, low pitched hipped roof with wood shingles. The two east bays of the full-width front porch are defined by battered masonry columns, which support a flat roof deck. The west porch bay is covered by a shingled, hipped roof, which is held up by a wood corner post. Double-hung windows fill the rectangular masonry openings. A three-sided bay window sits atop the roof deck at the east end of the front faÃ§ade. The wooden balustrade around the front deck is missing. The house is in fair condition (the roof shingles are deteriorated) and is only fairly kept. It does, however, retain its historic architectural integrity, and thus, contributes to the neighborhood’s character. Click here to see a copy of Mr. Doyle’s report on the Steward house.
Statement of significance/history
The Louis L. Steward house is significant for its association with Arizona pioneer and developer, Louis L. Steward. Steward first came to Arizona in 1905 as the only school teacher at Lee’s Ferry, Arizona. After teaching two years, he became a cowboy and then general manager for one of the largest cattle ranches in the nation, the Bar Z Cattle Company. In 1911, Steward was campaign manager for Henry Fountain Ashurst in Ashurst’s successful bid for the U. S. Senate. In 1909, Steward moved to Phoenix, where he became active as a developer. He subdivided and developed the Story addition, west of the Kenilworth addition. Steward was a loan officer for Home Owner’s Loan Corporation, head of Southwestern Building and Investment Company, and a director and principal stockholder of the Citizens State Bank. He also served as the head of the Federal Public Housing Administration in Arizona during World War II. The Louis L. Steward house was built for Louis and Mary Steward in 1914 by Southwestern Building & Investment Company. The house was originally equipped with a “day and night solar heater”. The Stewards lived there until ca. 1925. Because of its association with Louis L. Steward, the house appears to be individually eligible for the National Register.
Thank You to all those who helped realize this achievement
We couldn’t have done it without the following:
The reproduction French doors were ordered through Heldt Lumber in Phoenix.
Structural engineering was done by Starling and Associates.
Construction and finish carpentry by Start2Finish Home Repair.
Stucco and most wood repair was by Start2Finish
Roofing by R&F Roofing
Wood stripping and refinishing, especially rebuilding of the stairwell, by Dave Stanton
Recreating the look of the original kitchen cabinets, plus cabinet doors in the restrooms and hall, was by Mark Deermer, referred to us by neighbors in the F. Q. Story neighborhood, just west of 7th Ave. LL Steward developed the Story neighborhood in the 1920’s
Period lighting was partially scrounged locally, but mostly purchased from the JOHN F PEGAN CO, located in a small Indiana town 20 miles from where the iconic 1986 sports film “Hoosiers” was filmed. Generally, the lights are ca. 1910 to 1920 vintage, original brass (burnished and lacquered), re-wired, with reproduction shades.
Exterior painting, including minor stucco and wood repair, along with staining and varnishing interior and exterior doors, and the faux linoleum effect in the kitchen by Phoenix Art Link president Gary Parsel (all the above of Phoenix)
Photographic documentation and this web site – Photography by Karl Wolz
Reproduction hinges came from House of Antique Hardware; period hardware was located through long hours on Ebay
Construction and exterior restoration was funded in part by a City of Phoenix matching grant through the Historic Preservation Bond Fund.
Heldt Lumber 5712 N 7th St Phoenix, AZ 85014 (602) 277-3378
Gary Parsel 602-254-2192
Dave Stanton 602-738-8005
Start 2 Finish Home Repair LLC 13416 N. 32 St, #110 Phoenix, AZ 85032 602-820-3936 Start2finish@cox.net
R&F Roofing 39005 N 21 Ave. Phoenix, AZ 85086 623-465-4655
Mark Deermer 602-321-9083
John F. Pegan Co. firstname.lastname@example.org
Karl Wolz – email@example.com – 602-616-1802
The front porch needed repairs to both stucco and woodwork. The drywall ceiling and modern industrial light fixtures added little to the historical character (or charm) of the façade, and the oak front door carried many coats of paint.
After the stucco and woodwork repairs, we recreated the beadboard look of the ceiling and installed craftsman-style lights. We stripped and stained the door – and polished the original brass handle.
In the 1985 office conversion:
- A wall was added along the north (back) end of the parlor, creating a fairly useless hallway
- Badly chewed-up oak flooring in the hallway was covered with plywood and carpet
In 2006, we:
- Removed the wall and replaced much of the floor, sistering in a floor joist where the original no longer supported the oak flooring due to rot along the top couple of inches
- In the northeast (back/right) corner, we’ve removed the 1947 door and replaced it with a salvaged window of the same dimensions and style as the original, then added a salvaged back door in place of the window in the 1947-added bath
- A new pergola graces the back door, constructed of the same dimension timbers as the original front pergola
- Ceiling and walls were re-plastered, wood trim stripped and refinished
- Period lights were installed to replace fluorescents
- Baseboards, picture rail and door hardware were brought back to original appearance
- In 2014, we created an over-mantle for the fireplace, duplicating the style of the window surrounds and door jambs throughout the house.
Bringing back the graceful street presence of the building was one of our goals.
Given the exterior brick walls throughout the rest of the downstairs and the clear evidence that the exterior wall between the dining room and the porch was NOT brick, that wall could only have been some combination of doors and floor-to-ceiling windows. The dimension of the opening is a perfect fit for three pair of the then-standard eighteen inch wide French doors, with appropriate framing.
Southwest Corner and Porte-Cochere
We’ve restored the original look and function of the building by removing the roof over the pergola, then demolishing the 1947 closet built into the driveway side of the pergola. We installed three pair of period-authentic French doors, stained to match the original Douglas fir.
The dining room now opens onto a shallow porch, facing the drive. We felt that, in all likelihood, similar French doors originally closed the dining room off from the foyer (the current wall and door were clearly added – probably in 1947). In 2014, we removed this interior wall and installed two pairs of doors, complete with glass transoms – mirroring the doors installed on the opposite wall.
The opening through the original exterior wall at the back end of the parlor is itself original. Judging by its dimensions, it housed a back door with sidelights and allowed access to the coach house and back yard.
The 6’ x 10’ alcove behind the door (and its likeness upstairs) was added in the 1947 rooming house conversion to accommodate an extra bathroom per floor. As the “back door” now led into a bathroom, a new back door was framed-in in place of the original double-hung window near the north end of the east side wall of the parlor. We removed the 1947 door and, with a good deal of creative stuccoing, installed a salvaged double-hung window (virtually identical in size and details to the existing original on the other side of the fireplace) in its place.
We then created a new back door in place of the bathroom (now our lunch kitchen) window – a nice fit for a salvaged door. For a new back porch, we created a pergola of the same style as the original front pergola. We jack-hammered out the concrete steps and landing which had been poured in front of the 1947 door.
Back Entry Alcove/Kitchenette
The parlor originally seems to have had a door opening onto the back yard; the opening is original, and large enough to accommodate French doors – or a door and sidelights.
As part of the 1947 rooming house conversion, a 6’ X 10’ bathroom was added behind that opening. We now use that space as a back entry and kitchenette; we’ve built in cabinets to match those that were in the original kitchen, plumbed and re-done the counter, installed period hardware and lighting, painted to match the original kitchen area, and installed a similar faux-linoleum floor.
The current two rest rooms were newly constructed during the office renovation in 1985, carved out of the (presumed) servant’s quarters along the back wall of the first floor.
- We worked to take them to a period look,
- redid the oak floor in the small restroom,
- installed 1” square ceramic tile in the larger restroom,
- created period looking cabinetry (using salvaged doors in the small restroom),
- and installed bead-board wainscoting and period brass fixtures in both.
- We disguised the shower with a curtain.
The middle of the downstairs back wall features three identical wood casement windows lining the maid’s quarters (??).
The middle window was boarded up during the 1985 office conversion, as a new restroom wall runs squarely into it. We painted the plywood black behind the window opening, installed lace curtains behind slightly frosted glass, and added a sash salvaged from the window where we installed our new back door.
Now, you’d be hard pressed to tell the result from the real windows on either side.
The original kitchen cabinetry survived until the 1985 office conversion; we would have saved considerable expense if it had survived 1985 as well.
We removed the 1985 cabinets, re-created the kitchen cabinets to their original footprint and to period style, then installed 1910 vintage lights with the original ornate glass shades.
After an interminable wait on samples of linoleum (yes, it is still made), our painter, Gary Parsel, suggested that his grandfather developed a method for faking linoleum; Gary did so, over rough plywood, with great results.
What we assume to have been a maid’s room in the original house had much of its area removed during the 1985 office conversion to accommodate the two new restrooms.
We’ve continued the color scheme and flooring from the adjacent kitchen and utility porch; the period cabinets came out of a 1912 Queen Anne a couple blocks south of us when the Queen Anne had modern pressed wood cabinets installed as part of an “upgrade”.
Screened Utility Porch
Originally a screened utility porch — as best we can tell, during the 1947 rooming house conversion, the screened utility porch in the northwest corner (facing the driveway) was enclosed and the doorway facing the driveway was covered over with a sheet of plywood (the door itself and its hardware were left in place). A new undersize door was then added along the north wall.
In the 1985 office conversion, the plywood over the original door was stuccoed and textured and the new door covered over. We’ve removed the stucco and plywood, and sanded and painted the door and frame to bring it back to its original appearance. We’ve also removed the small 1947 door, filling in its opening with a window, sill, and lower wall to match the existing. Inside, we’re plastered and painted to match the kitchen area, and done the same “faux-linoleum” treatment on the floor.
The stairs and banister had suffered from use and abuse over the decades.
Several spindles had been replaced with new pine, newel posts had loosened, and several coats of paint had been applied. We brought in furniture restorer Dave Stanton from the F Q Story neighborhood to do a complete restoration. We stripped, stained and refinished the woodwork, plastered and painted; hung a period light fixture.
- Removed the 1947 wall and doorways
- Removed a plumbing chase (plumbing was no longer in use)
- Stripped popcorn ceilings and removed fluorescent light fixtures
- Restored and hung 1910 to 1915 vintage light fixtures
- Added a 10 inch glue-lam beam to support the ceiling where an original load-bearing wall had been removed (in 1947?)
- Patched, sanded and refinished fir floors
- Framed in a set of French doors (salvaged from a 1910 vintage home in Santa Barbara, California) to separate the 1947 alcove addition
- Stripped and refinished wood trim (generally, the public areas featured stained wood, the family areas painted)
- Lots of plaster
The smaller front bedroom primarily needed plastering, painting, and floor refinishing
Its original closet was another matter; converted to a bathroom in 1947, its flooring had been cut through for plumbing and had suffered a great deal of water damage. We repaired the floor and framed in a pair of French doors salvaged from a home of similar vintage located a block north on Portland.
Woodwork in the home’s public areas was originally stained rather than painted. It seems to be Douglas fir with a reddish tinge and a large grain pattern. Where we’ve had to replace, we’ve chosen redwood as it seems a close match.
All of the stained woodwork had been abused and painted; we’ve stripped and stained, replacing as a last resort. As elsewhere, the hallway needed to have popcorn removed from the ceiling.
We replaced fluorescent lights with restored period fixtures. Restoration of floors and plaster was badly needed. The picture rails now serve their original function.
And behold our period hall-tree!
The ornate, heavy brass hall tree at the top of the stairs was purchased in the fall of 2003 from “Home Again Furnishings”, complete with its original carnival glass light shades. It was a consignment piece from a family in the Arcadia Neighborhood who had owned it for a generation, and testified to its “provenance”. The family decided to sell because their maid had grown tired of polishing the brass.
The small ownership tag hidden on the back identifies it as the property of the “Chicken Ranch, Texas. Do not remove from bedrooms”. You may recall that the Chicken Ranch was the real life original of the musical and movie “Best Little Whorehouse in Texas”, with Burt Reynolds and Dolly Parton. We see it as a classy tribute to a once flourishing neighborhood industry.
In the 1985 office conversion:
The original sleeping porch (northwest corner of the second floor) was divided into two rooms. A new doorway was cut into the original bathroom. At some point, a fire had damaged flooring near the bathroom.
In 2005-6, we:
Removed the dividing wall and doorway, restored the floor, and, as elsewhere, removed popcorn ceilings, replaced fluorescent fixtures with appropriate period fixtures, and painted and plastered.
Photos show glue-down carpet being removed, carpet and tile glue being stripped off, and the patched fir floor being refinished.
Hardware and Lights
Much original door and window hardware survived the years and re-models, including about half of the VERY unusual door knobs and back plates; we’ve stripped and polished the existing, and found appropriate replacements for the missing pieces (and taker over a year to locate matching knobs and back plates). I do wish people wouldn’t paint hardware.