The Edward F. Brucker House, 2055 Robinwood Avenue
This Gothic Revival House was built in 1897 for Edward F. Brucker, who came from Bay City, Michigan in 1893. Founder and president of the Karavan Coffee Company, Mr. Brucker also played an important part in the construction of Rosary Cathedral as a member of that church's original building committee. Mrs. Brucker, a founder and first president of the Toledo Council of Catholic Charities, was also active in civic and cultural affairs. The Bruckers had four children. Mrs. Brucker died in 1944; Mr. Brucker died in 1948.
The vestibule, with its original marbled mosaic tile floor and leaded glass sidelights, leads into the front hall with a gas fireplace surrounded by mosaic tile. All of the woodwork in the front hall and the stairway had been painted. The current owner stripped off the paint and found it was all oak.
Off the hall to the right are pocket doors opening to the dining room with its own wood-burning fireplace. Across the hall is the living room with its original brass chandelier, a fireplace, and a built-in window seat. At the far end of the living room is a sunroom which is thought to have been enclosed after the home was built.
The built-in mahogany buffet in the dining room has leaded glass doors. Opposite the buffet is the original built-in linen and silver cabinet. If you're counting, the fourth fireplace on the first level of the house is located in the dining room. The kitchen is completely new and enlarged. In the half-bath off the kitchen is a leaded glass window. The second floor has five bedrooms and two full baths. There is one bedroom on the third floor.
Henahan-Brenyan House, 2052 Robinwood Avenue (left)
Architect unknown, built in 1894. This massive sandstone castle was built by the stone contractor, Michael Henahan, for himself. Its Romanesque architectural mode related it to the work of Henry Hobson Richardson, whose Trinity Church of 1873 in Boston won praise throughout the country.
Murray-Willys Home, 2210 Robinwood Avenue (right)
This English Tudor mansion was built in 1901 for Alvin B. Tillinghast, a licorice tycoon and patron of the arts. Despite his apparent wealth, Mr. Tillinghast went bankrupt building the house and turned it back over to the construction company. The construction company in turn traded the house for 12 Pope-Toledo cars produced by one of Toledo's great automotive industrialists, John North Willys, who founded Willys-Overland.
The foyer of the Murray-Willys home boasts a gold-leafed ceiling with a beautiful staircase leading to the second floor. The massive living room contains the largest of the many gas fireplaces in the home. The spectacular dining room features ornately carved mahogany woodwork and the original, hand-carved chandelier. The library features the original wainscoting and a fresh air ventilating system. The kitchen has been completely remodeled with all new cabinets, which are designed to match the existing cabinets in the cook's and butler's pantry. Through persistence and careful attention to detail, Michael and Ellen Murray have restored this Old West End landmark to its original elegance.
Frederick O. Paddock House, 2233 Robinwood Avenue
Built in 1892, this house is unusual in its lavish use of sandstone, brick, and shingle. The basic form and prominent tower, asymmetrical gables, and generous curving veranda are in keeping with the Shingle style.
Julian H. Tyler House, 2251 Robinwood Avenue
Judge Tyler's Detroit architects derived the design of this house from 18th century American Georgian sources combined with the diluted Palladianism which characterized the work of the New York firm McKim, Mead & White.
William H. Currier House, 2611 Robinwood Avenue
The Italian style of this house is most apparent on the south side which has an unusual flat tile roof, stucco extension walls, and arched windows on the second floor. Built in 1910, this house's gabled dormers and fan windows face the front and side. French doors lead to a large veranda. Basket arches surround the front windows and door.
Stranahan-Rothschild House, 2104 Parkwood Avenue
Originally built in 1907 for $14,000, this house once had a large front porch. The Georgian Revival style house is now entered by beautiful circular front steps.
Leeper-Geddes House, 2116 Parkwood Avenue
This home was the residence of the Roman Catholic Bishop of Toledo. Thomas F. Huber was its architect and it was built in 1903. One of the most palatial houses surviving in the area was designed in a style widely admired since the building of the White House. Though the veranda is a Victorian invention, Huber's treatment of the bowed element; the detailing; and the proportions reflect the late Italian Renaissance architecture of Palladio.
Waite-Radcliff-Coder Home, 2256 Collingwood Boulevard
The Italian Renaissance style of this home is well represented by its rectangular design with composite columns, brick and sandstone construction, and the carved stone and zinc panels above many of the windows. The house was designed by architect Ed Fallis and built in 1892 for John Waite, a Toledo plumbing contractor.
The interior of the house is rich with imported and rare adornments. The foyer and staircase are done in white oak. The living room woodwork is birdseye and ribbon maple. Also in the living room are excellent examples of chandeliers and sconces by Faukebach, and a hand-carved Italian mantelpiece imported from France. The coffered ceilings were imported in sections from England. Another English import is the Zuber mural in the dining room. Even though the wallpaper was damaged when a covering layer was removed, it is still considered to be museum quality. The original wood blocks used to print this paper still exist at the French manufacturer's plant.
Throughout the home are 800 pieces of cut, beveled glass, including original beveled glass doors and windows.
Klosinski-Winfield Home, 2351 Glenwood Avenue
This eclectic Four Square home was built in 1907 for John Winfield, a prominent produce broker and travel agent who lived there until 1913. From 1916 to 1938, the home was occupied by Dr. Walter Snyder, a prominent Toledo eye surgeon. The house became a boarding house in 1940 and changed hands six times before it was purchased by Frank Klosinski in 1986.
This lovely home was built of New York yellow brick, which gets its distinctive color from its high iron content. The handsome yellow brick exterior is accented with a sandstone trim. The interior of the home boasts oak woodwork, beamed ceilings, massive stained glass windows, and three fireplaces. Given the past neglect and alterations of this home, Mr. Klosinski's complete renovation of this magnificent structure demonstrates the potential for elegance that is present in many Old West End homes.