Louis H. Batchelder House, 877 North Snelling Avenue, Saint Paul, Minnesota

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Batchelder, Louis H., House

Address: 877 Snelling Avenue N
Neighborhood/s: Hamline-Midway, Saint Paul, Minnesota
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Ramsey County, Minnesota
State/province: Minnesota
Country: United States
Year built: 1886
Primary Style: Queen Anne
Additions: Vinyl siding covered over the architectural details. Exterior work done in 2006 or 2007.
Major Alterations: Altered
Historic Function: House/single dwelling or duplex
Historic Function: Hamline Professor's house
Other Historic Function: Hamline Professor's house
Current Function: House/single dwelling or duplex
Current Function: student rental housing
Other Current Function: student rental housing
Architect or source of design: Warren H. Hayes
Builder: none listed
Material of Exterior Wall Covering: Wood
Material of Roof: Asphalt Shingles
Material of Foundation: Stone
Building Permit Number: 9317
First Owner: Louis H. Batchelder
Notes: The 1983 Ramsey County Historical Society Site Survey lists the architect as W. H. Hugo. However, architectural historian Paul Clifford Larson has confirmed that the architect was Warren H. Hayes, who was the architect of Hamline University's Old Main located nearly one block away from this house.

Hamline-Midway Saint Paul Ramsey County

Louis H. Batchelder House, 877 North Snelling Avenue, Saint Paul, Minnesota
(44.96748° N, 93.167487° WLatitude: 44°58′2.928″N
Longitude: 93°10′2.953″W

This 1886 house was built for Louis H. Batchelder, a professor at nearby Hamline University. When Hamline relocated the university from Red Wing to this area located "midway" between St. Paul and Minneapolis, this area was an open prairie. Hamline opened its campus here in 1880, and students and faculty lived together in the first campus building now called "Old Main." It was common then for Hamline faculty to build their houses in close proximity to the campus, and this house is significant for being one of the oldest remaining of these original professors' homes. The neighborhood was known for some time as simply "Hamline" but today the area is known as the Hamline-Midway neighborhood (St. Paul Planning District 11).

Data provided is from the 1983 Ramsey County Historical Society / Saint Paul Heritage Preservation Commission Historic Sites Survey prepared by fieldworker R. Younger, date of site visit 2/8/1982:

Historical Background: "This house was built in 1886 for an estimated cost of $3,500. The original owner and occupant of the house was Louis H. Batchelder, a professor at Hamline University." The source of information for the occupant was the 1887 Polk's St. Paul City Directory.

From the historic site survey "other significant details": "Strong vertical emphasis created by steeply pitched, picturesque roofline. Tallest gable has shingles, oval window with keystone. Small pedimited gabled dormer has multiple paned window. Gable end on opposite side of facade has half-timbered effect above window. On south half of main facade there is a 1 story, 3-sided bay window topped by a 2nd story rectangular bay, 2 story bay window on north side wall. Oriel window on 2nd story of south side wall."

Additions and Alterations: "Aluminum siding, some new windows, original front porch removed, some decorative details removed."

Statement of Significance: "This pleasing Queen Anne style house featured a strong vertical emphasis and is one of the oldest in the immediate area. Unfortunately it has undergone numerous alterations."

Legal Description: Lot 1, Block 6, College Place Taylor Division Addition (now E. C. Long's )Rearrangement)

The house is located at the SW corner of Taylor on the west side of Snelling.



Comments from Krista Finstad Hanson:

This house is significant in that the architect of the house has been attributed to Warren H. Hayes who was the architect of Hamline University's Old Main which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Old Main was originally built in 1880, and there was a fire in 1883. Old Main was rebuilt with three stories instead of four and reopened in 1884. Warren H. Hayes was known as a church architect specializing in Richardsonian Romanesque-style architecture as evidenced in downtown Saint Paul's Central Presbyterian Church located at....

The Historic Sites Survey lists the architect as W. H. Hugo and it's possible that when the fieldworker couldn't read the handwriting on the building permit he or she mistook "Hayes" for "Hugo."

This historic house was originally built for Louis H. Batchelder who was a professor at Hamline University located across Snelling Avenue from this house.

The original exterior wall covering was woodframe with clapboard siding, however in 2006 or 2007 the property owners covered the wood siding with vinyl siding. This work covered over significant details such as the oriel window on the front facade and the fish-scale shingles at the gable end of the third story.

The house is in its original location, which in 2008 finds it across the street from the Walker Field House complex, which is on the north end of the Hamline University Campus.

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