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430 N Baldwin ( c. 1915)

The following is the known history of the house currently occupying the lot at 430 North Baldwin Street Madison Wisconsin 53703.  This information was obtained from City of Madison Directories at the Wisconsin State Historical Society, as well as first hand accounts of the former owner Ruth Houlter.

Having purchased the home in June of 2005 from Ruth Houlter she was able to provide the following information about its history.  According to Ruth the house was built in 1906 on Sherman avenue and was owned by the Garver family of Garver feed mill fame. The house had been moved to the lot at 430 north Baldwin Street from Sherman avenue and slipped in beside the cotton wood tree that once stood here, from the adjoining lot 434 N Baldwin which used to be part of the property.  Ruth lived in the house since she was a child.  The lot at 434 N Baldwin was sold by her Father in 1955.  According to Ruth the lot was vacant and boys were playing baseball in it (evidently a cause for concern) the lot was sold to prevent its broad use by the neighborhood children.  Ruth also lived in the house with her family raising her son here, inheriting the home after her mother'€™s death.

The city assessors office states that the brick Tudor house now occupying the lot at 1224 Sherman avenue was built in 1915, this is however incorrect.  Construction of the brick Tudor currently occupying 1224 Sherman avenue was begun in 1928 by the Garver family.  Our home at 430 N Baldwin Street was originally built on the lot at 1224 Sherman Avenue in 1915 by the Reverend A. S. Magann who is listed in the city directory in 1914 as a Geologist.  According to the City of Madison Directory the Garver family purchased our home on the lot at 1224 Sherman avenue in 1918.  The building was sold in 1928 by Garver to Cecil Sherwood to clear the lot at 1224 Sherman avenue for the construction of the Brick Tudor building now standing.  Our house was then moved in 1928 by Sherwood from the lot at 1224 Sherman avenue to its current location at 430 North Baldwin street.

The City of Madison Directories show that the first mention of 430 North Baldwin Street is in 1929 as the residence of Cecil and Kathy Sherwood.  It is sold sometime before 1937 and then listed as the residence of Algot Wallmo.  In 1943 it is listed as the residence of William McFadden.  Finally in 1946 it is the residence of Edward and Elizabeth Thale, and their daughter Ruth.  Edward Thale is listed as a clerk for an unspecified machine company and Elisabeth as a clerk for Kroger.  The property remained in the hands of the Thale family and there decedents until 2005 when Ruth Houlter (formerly Ruth Thale) sold the property.

Although small by modern standards at just 2000 square feet of living space, our home boasts some now unusual features, including a separate servants staircase and living quarters.  There is also a strange second story egress to the back of the home with a now truncated porch.  This may have at one time been a very different and larger structure with a more recognizable purpose. We also have a majestic picture window at the back of the house that once looked out on Lake Mendota, but now surveys only a very tiny back yard.


Photo taken in the 1980s