1020 Harrison Blvd
Boise, Idaho 83702
North End Neighborhood
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This structure is a residential house built in 1936 in a type of English Tudor/Cottage style. We chose this particular house because it looked unique on the outside and we were hoping to learn more about its story on the inside. The Ripley residence fits in perfectly as a part of the Harrison Boulevard Historic District in the North end of Boise. The frame is built primarily from red brick and cement with a European countryside style in mind. The one-story brick residence has a steep, gabled roof which almost reaches the ground. The heavy shake shingles contrast well with the brick walls of the house. There is the first floor and a basement with a stairs leading to the basement. It has three bedrooms and two and three fourths baths, two car garage, and two fire places. It has small windows with many lights, some of them diamond shaped which help add to the English cottage style. The porch light in the front displays a lantern hanging on an ax. This is an original antique made from stone. In the dining room there is an authentic Franklin Wood stove surrounded by red brick. Also in one of the hallways remains the original and still functioning doorbell made of three brass pipes located near the master bedroom. In the hallways were 1930s light fixtures and in the master bedroom hung a classic glass chandelier. Another unique aspect of the house was that it contained two fireplaces, one on the main level and another in a wall in the basement. In 1995 an addition was added to the north wing of the house formatted to resemble a Mexican style house. Surrounding the room were windowed walls and on the ceiling were also windows also to allow for natural lighting. The reasoning the older couple chose the Mexican room was to remind them of the seventeen years they spent living in Mexico together. It had contained many collectibles they had acquired from Mexico including paintings, plates, and a large sailboat resting on the walls ledge. Also from Mexico was an antique two hundred year old lock that they had built into a beautiful iron gate located between the garage and the main house and also connecting the front and back yard. The archway between the two sectors was originally there and the Iron Gate was later added for security. The garage was unusual for the reason that it had a slanting roof and the driveway looped around the back yard and onto a back road. Much remodeling has been done to the home beginning in 1995 including retiling the front path and steps with new brick, the back patio with synthetic sandstone that blended well with the house. Inside the house the kitchen cabinets and counters had also all been remodeled. An interesting thing about the architecture of the stairs to the basement is that you have to duck your head when you are going down. Also the ceilings on the basement floor are about six feet five inches tall. In the bathroom of the basement the ceiling reaches only about six feet tall. The windows in the house are large and covered by stylistic iron bars in a criss cross pattern much like traditional European country side homes. The backyard is enclosed by a two foot thick stonewall that is part of the original structure. As and extension of the wall and more recently added is a black, iron picket railing put up as an artistic feature and for extra security. Also in the backyard is a sixty year old plum tree that sheds its fruit yearly. The landscaping is very elaborate with lots of green shrubs and flowers. The beautiful scenery added to the overall facade of house. Behind the garage in the back is an old dog run left behind by the previous owners that the current residents transformed into a storage room that fits with the style of the house. Over part of the driveway is a newly built car port made out of wood. The purpose of the car port is to protect the cars and other things from weathering. Unfortunately we were not able to uncover very much history behind the house but we did learn that the architecture company that constructed it also built Boise High School. The name of the company is Jordan-Wilcomb Construction Company which built many residential and commercial buildings in the North End and other cities such as Pocatello, Fruitland, and Nampa.
Building submitted by Mariah Smith and Andrea Fontenot