Property Type: Residential
Neighborhood: The Bench  |  County: Ada  |  Building Status: Public  |  Architectural Style: Modern
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The 4531 Freemont Street house is certainly an interesting piece of architecture on the Boise Bench. This classic modern house, based on Bauhaus from Germany, is one of only about a dozen in Boise. Built in 1938 by an unknown German architect, this house adds quite the Art Deco spin to the neighborhood. Numerous rumors circle the neighborhood about ghosts and secret morgues in the house.

The family that currently lives there renovated the house to get it back to its old state. When they had first moved in, it could hardly have been recognized as a modern house due to the added roof, carpet, and rebuilt fire place. Modern is a style based off of Bauhaus that is prominent in Germany. It features curved corners and the stucco concrete white walls. This house, after renovation, is a very good example of the modern style.

The house was first owned by a Chinese family, who was rumored to run an embalming center in the basement. This morgue-like happenings are seemed to be true due to the basement steps, which feature a straight slope in the middle, which could be used to roll caskets down there. Rumors also suggest an intricate dragon painting that once wrapped around the wall of the stairs.

There are also rumors of ghosts in the upstairs and the basement, which have been confirmed. An old angry Chinese man lives in the basement, while a nice old lonely woman lives upstairs.

The family who lives there now renovated the house a lot to get it back to its original form. When it was first bought, a pitched roof had been on it and the fireplace had been redone to look have more of a ranch style. Now, the color and tiles have all been put in to match the original deco form, and the pitched roof was removed to get the house back to the modern form it once was.

The style of architecture known as art modern was very common in America from 1925 to around 1980. This style of architecture is focuses more on horizontal orientation while many others focus more on vertical orientation. Strong characteristics of art modern architecture would be the curved windows and walls and the flat roof. The walls around the house are flat making the outside look very smooth. It usually has an open floor plan and is very asymmetrical. This is not a very common style in America today, but more people are beginning to appreciate it.

The inspiration for this house came along from a German style called Bauhaus. This type of architecture was created before Nazi Germany and was spread throughout Germany. Once the Nazi’s took over Germany they banned the Bauhaus style causing many architects to leave Germany. The German architects came to America where they began to build buildings and teaching in the Bauhaus School of Design where they taught many young architects about the unique style of Bauhaus. Once the style had been mastered architects set out across America to spread the Bauhaus influence.