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Location:  1034 S. Mill Avenue 
Survey Number: HPS-195
Year Built: 1925
Architectural Style: Bungalow

SUMMARY
The 1925 Robert K. Minson House is significant as one of the earliest homes to be built in the historic Park Tract and as a substantial example of the Bungalow style constructed in clay brick masonry with Georgian symmetry and detailing.

A: HISTORIC EVENTS
The Minson House is significant as one of the earliest homes to be built in the historic Park Tract. As agriculture slowly diversified in response to collapsed cotton prices, the Tempe economy began a slow recovery throughout the 1920s and, on April 10, 1924, Hugh Laird and Fred J Joyce, platted the Park Tract subdivision in response to a housing shortage in Tempe. Located on Tempe’s major business artery, the Minson House made a positive contribution to the new neighborhood in 1925. Although a measure of prosperity returned to Tempe in the late 1920s, the onset of the Great Depression slowed growth and economic expansion until the post-war boom of the mid 1940s. Accordingly, the Park Tract subdivision remains significant as one of the oldest surviving neighborhoods in Tempe. Although this neighborhood has seen changes, it has managed to survive and retain sufficient integrity to convey its historic character to residents and visitors who today recognize the neighborhood as the historic heart of the community.

B: PERSONS
Robert K. Minson was a farmer when he built the house at 1034 S. Mill Avenue. The family lived in the house for several years. Robert died in 1935, and his wife continued to own the property until 1943. The house was a multi-residence building for many years before becoming a meeting center for the Lutheran Synod. It was remodeled as a church building about 1985. The AIA awarded design was by Dr. Robert Herschberger, ASU Architecture professor and later Dean of Architecture at the University of Arizona.

C: ARCHITECTURE
This substantial brick bungalow suggests Georgian styling in the symmetry of the facade, central entry, pediment front gable, and gablets. The Robert K. Minson House was originally a single-story, rectangular brick building with a hipped roof and gablets on three roof planes. A rectangular second-story frame addition at the rear is perpendicular to the main axis of the house and rises above the roof line. The addition also has a hipped roof and gables. The second story was added during construction or soon after. All gablets are filled with horizontal louvered ventilators. Roof surfaces are covered with asphalt shingles. A chimney protrudes from each of the side slopes of the roof. The roof projects over the front facade of the house covering a porch that extends the full length of the facade. A pediment front gable projects slightly over the central entry of the porch, and features a rectangular window with a single long light, topped with eight small square lights, all framed with wood. The porch is characterized by four large, square brick pillars resting on the concrete porch floor and reaching to a full-length frieze under the roof. Access to the porch is by a single step flanked with two low brick walls capped with concrete. A similar wall connects the pillars at the front of the porch. The ends of the porch are open. A single-leaf, multi-light door is centered in the front facade. The north side of the house also has a single-leaf door reached by two concrete steps. Another single door is at the rear of the house. Front windows are large, rectangular, four-light windows, each light framed in wood. Other windows in the house are of varying sizes and are grouped in pairs and triplets, as well as individually placed. Most windows are double-hung. The addition is covered with horizontal clapboard siding and features long, rectangular casement windows. Access to the addition’s entry is by a wood stairway at the rear of the house. The entry to the addition features a curved balustrade, which serves as a protective railing.

SOURCES
Tempe History Museum Historic Property Survey HPS -195 Robert K. Minson House
Last updated: 5/8/2012 8:56:30 AM