Edwin J. Nieman House
13030 North Cedarburg Road, Mequon, Ozaukee County
Architect: Herman H. Bruns
Date of Construction: 1928-1929
The Edwin J. Nieman house is an elaborately detailed, Tudor Revival style, brick-clad mansion. It was built in the rural countryside north of the village of Thiensville in 1928 at a cost of more than $60,000. The design is the work of Herman H. Bruns, a noted Milwaukee architect, who was also a skilled artist, wood-carver and decorator.
Edwin J. Nieman, Sr., was a partner in the Wisconsin-based Fromm Bros.-Nieman Co., which in 1928 was the nation's largest breeder of silver foxes for furs. The breeders had large farms in both Ozaukee and Marathon counties. Nieman's house and its 26-acre grounds were originally surrounded on all sides by the much larger land holdings associated with the company's Thiensville area fox farm.
The property reflects the popularity of the American country house movement of the 1920s, when wealthy families built lavish estates in imitation of European nobles. Designed to be fireproof, the Nieman House has a steel frame and reinforced concrete floors and walls. Bruns' decorative talent is seen in the elaborate and highly original interior, which contains such features as a glassed-in conservatory complete with a working fountain, windows featuring painted and stained glass, and extensive wrought iron both inside and out.
Nieman occupied the house until his death in 1985. The house remains a private residence and is not open to the public. Please respect the owner's privacy.