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Palo Alto Historic Buildings Inventory

225 Emerson Street
Rosebrook Cottage

inventory photo 225 Emerson
Inventory photo Photo taken April 17, 2011

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

Physical appearance:   This modest one–story Queen Anne cottage has the bay window, turned columns, and jigsaw ornament typical of the style. The planting retains fragments of 19th century landscaping. House and garden together convey the presence of a past era.

Significance:  Rosebrook House is an excellent example of the ornamented Queen Anne cottage, with its scroll work, spindles, dropped pendants, cut–back corners, and fan–shaped carving. it is one of the few survivors of the early era in an area where commercial and multi–family residential developments have occurred.

The Rosebrooks, for whom it was built, came to the city in 1892. He was a carpenter and contractor. Mrs. Rosebrook was active in the WCTU (Womens Christian Temperance Union), the women's suffrage movement, and the Unitarian Church. She was also a charter member of the Palo Alto Woman's Club. From 1935–1952, it was the home of Lawrence C. Baker and his wife, Virginia. Baker was an attorney and had served as president of the San Francisco Bar Association. The present owner (Genevieve R. Snow, 1979)) is a descendant of the Rosebrook family.

The following is from the Centennial Buildings Tour, prepared by The City of Palo Alto Historic Resources Board for the Centennial Building Celebration, April 16, 1994. The houses included on the tour were all identified as at least 100 years old:

Rosebrook House, a Queen Anne cottage, has the style's typical bay window, turned columns and jigsaw ornament, and fragments of the 19th century landscaping. It was built by Sheldon and Mosher for Mrs. Rosebrook, a charter member of the Palo Alto Women's (sic) Club and active in the Unitarian Church, women's suffrage, and the Women's Christian Temperance Union.


Built in 1893, it is a Category 2 on the Palo Alto Historic Buildings Inventory. The builders were Sheldon & Mosher and G.W. Rosebrook. The lot measures 100 x 125 feet.

Sources: Palo Alto City Directories; Palo Alto Times 1/26/93, 8/3/94, 12/22/27, 4/30,35. 4/7/82; San Francisco Chronicle, 4/7/82; Palo Alto AAUW, ...Gone Tomorrow?, p. 7; Genevieve Snow, 1987.


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