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Palo Alto Historic Buildings Inventory

1251 Bryant Street

(also identified 380 Melville)

Professorville Historic District

1978 photo map
Photo taken in 1978 Locatiion map

The following is from the Historic Buildings Inventory as revised in 1981:

Physical appearance: This is a crisp two–story Queen Anne design with an interesting intersection of the front gable and entrance wing. Touches of classic detailing are minimal, with the interplay of voids, windows and roof forms providing the principal design interest. The eave return and paired windows of the front gable balance the second floor hip–roofed dormer with tripartite window pattern.

The porch has been enclosed from corner to doorway and a porch has been added at the rear.

Significance: The balance of design elements within this restrained Queen Anne composition adds interest and strength to its image. Classical Revival style features, though minimal, provide a touch of elegance. Though somewhat altered, the building is a good representative of a vernacular version of the Queen Anne mode.

Early occupants included Mr. and Mrs. Gable (1901–1902); Marguerite Paoll; Mrs. S.S. Sherman; and E.H. Lockwood, the YMCA Secretary at Stanford, and his wife. In 1917 Castilleja School acquired the property and, until the mid–1940s provided housing for its staff by dividing it into two units, one for men, the other for women.

Subsequently, for twenty years, it was occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Arthur L. Ritchey.

The Jenny Wren Nursery was located for a time in the portion facing Melville Avenue.

A late owner, Bruce Quarton, brought the property back into its present excellent condition.

In 1979, it was owned by Malcolm Brown and used as a rental duplex.

This house was built in 1901 and is a Category 3 on the Historic Buildings Inventory. The architect and builder are unknown. The property measures 50 by 162 feet.

Sources: Palo Alto City Directories; Palo Alto Times

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