Wisconsin Historical Society

National or State Registers Record

631 Cedar Street

National or State Register of Historic Places
631 Cedar Street | National or State Registers Record | Wisconsin Historical Society
Historic Name:Kilbourn Public Library
Reference Number:74000061
Location (Address):631 Cedar Street
City/Village:Wisconsin Dells
Kilbourn Public Library
631 Cedar Street, Wisconsin Dells, Columbia County
Architect: Claude & Starck
Date of Construction: 1912

The Kilbourn Public Library is an excellent small Carnegie library; one of many libraries designed by architectural firm Claude & Starck of Madison. The architects developed a simple, compact and attractive scheme that appealed to library commissions, particularly those funded by the Carnegie Foundation. They received many commissions for libraries throughout Wisconsin and in other states as well.

Louis Claude became well versed in the field of library design, and vigorously pursued library commissions during this period of explosive growth. He spoke before library clubs and produced a pamphlet on the subject. Claude & Starck were part of a Midwestern progressive movement and many of the firm's library designs display Prairie School or Arts and Crafts elements.

The building is a unique blending of Prairie School style with details reflecting the Arts and Crafts movement. The simple rectangular building is raised above grade on a rough stone base to allow for basement windows. Prairie influence can be seen in the horizontal banding that wraps the building, and the ribbon windows located at each gable end. The decorative brackets supporting the overhanging roof and the timber-like detailing reflect its Arts and Crafts roots.

The library was vacated by the city and sold to a private owner. In 1999, the owner offered the building for relocation and it was purchased and relocated from 429 Broadway to a site adjacent to the new library building that replaced it. It is currently being used as professional offices.

Period of Significance:1900-1924
Area of Significance:Architecture
Applicable Criteria:Architecture/Engineering
Historic Use:Education: Library
Architectural Style:Prairie School
Resource Type:Building
Architect:Claude & Stavck
Historic Status:Listed in the National Register
Historic Status:Listed in the State Register
National Register Listing Date:12/27/1974
State Register Listing Date:01/01/1989
Number of Contributing Buildings:1
Number of Contributing Sites:0
Number of Contributing Structures:0
Number of Contributing Objects:0
Number of Non-Contributing Sites:0
Number of Non-Contributing Structures:0
Number of Non-Contributing Objects:0
National Register and State Register of Historic Places, Division of Historic Preservation, Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison, Wisconsin

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