Monday, October 30, 2017

Out on Jackson Dr.

Two more houses I believe to be the work of William Waters were built on Jackson Drive north of New York Avenue.  The first one was constructed in 1890 for Mr. Gustav Grunske, a grocer turned teamster.  The city directory of 1889 lists Mr Grunske as a grocer at 217 Pearl St. and living at the same address, the directory of 1891 lists him as a teamster living on Jackson Dr. 
The house was extensively remodeled, perhaps in the 1960's or 70's and altered so much as to be nearly unrecognizable as a Queen Anne style much less a job by William Waters.  I was unable to find a photograph of the building before modernization but I feel given what other Waters' designed houses of the time looked like it probably appeared much like the drawing.
The next possible Waters' job is just across the street from the Grunske place but dates from 1908.  The land west of Jackson Dr. and north of New York Avenue had been occupied for many years the the fair grounds, a large exhibition building and race course.  About 1900 the grounds were moved north of Murdock Ave. between Jackson and Main Street.  Soon many fine new house were being built along the west side of Jackson Drive one of them was for T. B. Waters the treasurer of the Foster Lothman Mill.  Mr. Thomas B. Waters was not related to William Waters but Thomas had a fine house built and may have chosen William Waters, for the house featured many details often used by architect Waters.    



  1. Hi, I'm fascinated by this, although it may not be of much interest to you. I started following your blog and Pinterest. Thanks for documenting so thoroughly.

    I know this seems like a long shot, but the original owners of my 1905 semi-Queen Anne all the way out in Portland, Oregon, were from Wisconsin and my house looks like nothing else in the city so I'm curious if the plans could have hailed from Wisconsin. It has some features that I don't see on these houses like enclosed or boxed gable ends, and a wraparound porch, but other than that it's a dead ringer for the William Waters houses you have depicted here. Is it possible that they could have brought plans out with them when they moved? The original owners of my house were surname Swan, which seems to show up in the area although I assume that was a common name in Wisconsin at the time. The outbuilding to the right in the front facing image is on another property. To my knowledge, very little has been changed other than the rear porches (the stacked sun-porches have been enclosed, I don't know what they looked like before, and I believe a porch was created on the foundation where one did not exist on the opposite side instead).

    If you have time to take a look at the images it would be much appreciated.

  2. Hello Caroline, I'm having difficulty viewing the image, could you e-mail a copy to I'm eager to see it.

  3. Hi Richard,

    I emailed a couple of photos. I can send/take more if it looks like something worth following up on.

    Thanks for documenting all of this. Even if it's not a William Waters house, the style must have been influenced, there's just nothing like it in my home town.