1537-1545 N CASS ST | Property Record | Wisconsin Historical Society

Property Record

1537-1545 N CASS ST

Architecture and History Inventory
1537-1545 N CASS ST | Property Record | Wisconsin Historical Society
Historic Name:Friedmann Row
Other Name:North Cass Street Townhouses
Reference Number:28215
Location (Address):1537-1545 N CASS ST
Unincorporated Community:
Quarter Section:
Quarter/Quarter Section:
Year Built:1891
Additions: 1900 1901 1903
Survey Date:1986
Historic Use:row house
Architectural Style:Queen Anne
Structural System:
Wall Material:Brick
Architect: W.A. Holbrook
Other Buildings On Site:
Demolished Date:
National/State Register Listing Name: Friedmann Row
National Register Listing Date:4/12/1996
State Register Listing Date:8/4/1995
National Register Multiple Property Name:
Additional Information:A 'site file' exists for this property. It contains additional information such as correspondence, newspaper clippings, or historical information. It is a public record and may be viewed in person at the State Historical Society, Division of Historic Preservation.

Friedmann Row is unusual on two counts. Of the rows that once clustered on Milwaukee's lower east side, it is one of the few that survive. It is also a rare example of a row house in the Queen Anne style. Normally, the rhythmic, repetitive appearance imposed by the row house format precluded the asymmetrical massing and irregularly shaped roofs that typify Queen Anne design. But in Friedmann Row, architect Walter Holbrook struck an elegant compromise. He alternated dormers and gables on the roofline, repeated a horseshoe-arch portal on the Cass Street facade, and placed a tent-roofed tower at the corner. As a result, the overall structure achieves a row house-like rhythm, and yet each unit individually resembles an asymmetrically massed house, different from its neighbors. Other Queen Anne textural variations include smooth cream-brick walls accented by rough limestone lintels and sills, and decorative shingle patterning on the gables.

Like many row houses of its era, Friedmann Row was built to house upper-middle-class families but was converted to a rooming house. Then, in 1993, new owners rehabilitated Friedmann Row, converting it back into single-family units and restoring much of its original interior and exterior character.

This building's original owner, Ignatius Friedmann (1820-1894) from Austria-Hungary came to Milwaukee in 1860 and became a successful real estate investor and men's clothing wholesaler. A leader in the city's business community, he was also an intellectual man who worked to advance the arts and served as a principal benefactor of the German-English Academy.

Ignatius Friedmann was the original owner of the property. (A).

E. Stegerwald - Builder.

Another map code is 226/12.
Bibliographic References:A. Date of construction, designer: Permit. Buildings of Wisconsin manuscript.
Wisconsin Architecture and History Inventory, State Historic Preservation Office, Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison, Wisconsin

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