Sunday, April 14, 2013

414 West Granite

Built: 1908

Butte’s architectural diversity is legendary, and this Mission style home adds to that reputation. The Mission style traces its roots to Hispanic California and in Montana, it most frequently appears in civic, rather than residential, buildings. Butte’s copper king W. A. Clark, for example, employed the style for his celebrated Columbia Gardens amusement park. This is Butte’s only residential example of the style.

414 W. Granite in 1909.
A stucco exterior; heavy, square columns; and a shaped parapet are the style’s hallmarks. The stucco covers all-concrete exterior construction, a much-touted building material in 1908. Its rich interior features ceilings with exposed beams, inlaid floors, and oak, teak, and walnut woodwork. The original cloth tapestry wallpaper and an exquisite stained glass window grace the dining room. Arthur L. Schimpf acquired title to the property from the Joseph Schlitz Brewing Company and built the home in 1908, at a cost of $17,000, a very handsome sum at the time. Schimpf was the proprietor of the famous Atlantic Saloon on the south side of Park Street between Main and Dakota, a Butte fixture that reputedly had the longest bar in the world.

Longtime property owners Michael L. and Christy McGrath, also bar owners, brought an additional unique connection: Christy’s grandfather was once a bartender at the Atlantic Saloon.

Source: Expanded from historic plaque text by Montana Historical Society; additional resource: Anaconda Standard, Dec. 19, 1909 (historic photo). Modern photo by Richard Gibson.

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