1745 Oregon St | National or State Registers Record | Wisconsin Historical Society

National or State Registers Record

1745 Oregon St

National or State Register of Historic Places
1745 Oregon St | National or State Registers Record | Wisconsin Historical Society
Historic Name:Smith School
Reference Number:100006898
Location (Address):1745 Oregon St
Smith School
1745 Oregon Street, Oshkosh, Winnebago County
Architect: William Waters; Auler, Jensen, & Brown
Dates of Construction: 1896; 1929 (addition); 1996 (addition)

Smith School was constructed in Oshkosh’s Third Ward in 1896 following a design by master Oshkosh architect William Waters. As the architect of choice for Oshkosh’s board of education, Waters designed many public school buildings in Oshkosh in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. His design for Smith School replaced a one-room school building of the same name that had been constructed thirty years earlier and had since become overcrowded, dark, and deteriorated, leading one visitor to label it a “disgrace to the city.” In contrast, the new Smith School contained four well-lit classrooms, wide corridors, and a second-floor office overlooking its distinctive double-arched front entrance.

In 1929, the city hired William Waters’ protégé Henry Auler of the firm of Auler, Jensen, & Brown to design an addition to the building that would accommodate the neighborhood’s growing school-age population. The addition matched the Romanesque Revival style of the original building and provided a “modern” and well-appointed kindergarten suite as well as an “open-air” classroom that would provide year-round fresh air to students of poor health. The school received a gymnasium addition in 1996, allowing it to function on par with the city’s other neighborhood schools in terms of physical education and indoor recreational activities. Serving as a public school for over 120 years, Smith School is highly representative of the evolving requirements and expectations of public education in the city of Oshkosh.

Period of Significance:1896-1929
Area of Significance:Architecture
Applicable Criteria:Architecture/Engineering
Historic Use:Education: School
Architectural Style:Romanesque
Resource Type:Building
Architect:William Waters
Architect:Auler, Jensen, & Brown
Historic Status:Listed in the State Register
Historic Status:Listed in the National Register
National Register Listing Date:09/16/2021
State Register Listing Date:05/14/2021
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, State Historic Preservation Office, Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison, Wisconsin

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