PAST Logo Palo Alto Stanford Heritage

Home Architects & Builders  Holiday House Tour Newsletters Walking Tours
About PAST Centennial Houses INVENTORY Preservation Awards Contact PAST
Advocacy History and Architecture Articles   Master Index to Houses Resources Join / Donate

Palo Alto Historic Buildings Inventory

221 Kingsley Avenue


Fowler Mansion

Inventory photo 221
Inventory photo Photo taken February 15, 2014


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

Physical appearance:   This large shingled Colonial Revival house presents a massive, composition of sculptured roof and dormer shapes, capped by a widow's walk. The grounds are appropriately expansive.

Significance:    This large home was built by Gustav Laumeister for Mrs. Joshua Fowler, widow of a Spanish–American War officer. She came to the community in 1900 so that her son could attend Stanford. When Frederick married Elsie Branner, daughter of Stanford's second president, John Branner, the young couple was welcomed into the Fowler residence. It was the "anchor" house of the Professorville district. Frederick Fowler became an engineer, with numerous governmental as well as private contracts and consultancies. In the 1940s he was president of the American Society of Civil Engineers and American Society of Military Engineers.

From 1938–1974 it was the residence of Professor Karl Brandt, a distinguished agricultural economist with the Carnegie Food Research Institute at Stanford.

Note: The front garden was the location for the 2002 PAST Centennial Plaque presentation to 100 year-old homes..

Note: In 2015, the house was rotated 90 degrees to face Ramona Street. The restoration process is still on-going.

Note: Renovations were completed in 2018 and the house was awarded a PAST Preservation Award in 2019.

upstairs dining room built-ins
side side view
entry fireplace map
Welcoming fireplace Location map

This house was built in 1902 and is a Category 2 on the Historic Buildings Inventory. The builder was Gustav Laumeister. The property measures 155 feet along Kingsley Avenue and 200 feet along Ramona Street.

Sources: Palo Alto City Directories; Palo Alto Times 1/2/03, 1/31/31, 11/7/45, 8/3/71, 7/9-10/75; Palo Alto AAUW, ... Gone Tomorrow?, p. 50.


FaceBook f

E-mail us at either or

PAST Logo Palo Alto Stanford Heritage—Dedicated to the preservation of Palo Alto's historic buildings.