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Palo Alto Historic Buildings Inventory

1021 Cowper Street

inventory 1021 today
Photo taken in 1978. Photo taken in 2012.

The following is from the Historic Buildings Inventory as revised in 1985:

Physical appearance:   The dormer gable echoes the porch entry gable in this 2 1/2–story Colonial Revival structure. Shingles surface the house and ornamentation reflects Colonial Revival with touches of Craftsman style.

The front portion of the structure is square in form, with a hip roof. A gable tops the rear portion and an open L–shaped porch extends across the front and wraps around the side of the building.

Significance:  This house projects the formality and elegance of the best examples of Colonial Revival style. Its first owners were Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Guinn, who shared space in it with J. W. McCurdy. Guinn was a retired Senator from the Pennsylvania legislature. McCurdy was a civil engineer. In 1907, C. W., and Lutie M. Fout purchased it, and it was the Fout family home until 1941. Phyllis, the wife of Edmund Fout, was a member of the pioneer Santa Clara Valley Auzerais family. Both she and her husband were Stanford graduates. He was the San Francisco manager of a lime company which hs father owned. Subsequent long–time residents were the families of Joseph L. Kresse (1953–1965) and Mrs. John C. Campbell. The owners at the time of the Inventory were Kenneth and Marilyn Campbell.

The structure is imposing in its size and formalistic presentation to the street. It is set admidst a fine landscaped garden. The height of the building combines with vertical facade elements and dormer/roof shapes to create an impressive street facade. With its handsome grounds, it is particularly expressive of one of Palo Alto's most characteristic images, and it contributes in style and era to its street.

entry side view
1021 map


This house was built in 1904 and is a Category 2 on the Historic Buildings Inventory. The architect was LeBaron Olive. The property measures 87 by 200 feet.

Sources: Palo Alto City Directories; Palo Alto Times 9/7/1904, 12/30/1904, 1/5/1906, 3/15/1907, 4/1/1907, 11/6/1919; interviews, 1984, Mrs. Connie (Fout) Lynch and Mrs. Abbie E. Fout


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