A stone’s throw away from historical Boise High School there is a charming two story sandstone and shingle house. The owners live in this newly remodeled home at 906 N. 10th St. They graciously invited us into their home for an insightful tour of the historic building.
This home was built by A. Gohner in 1904. It has an Eclectic style with Queen Anne influences and craftsman aspects, as Queen Anne buildings did not include the use of stone for building material. This house features a large cupola topped with a finial, and a covered porch that is curved to one side. The front features white columns that frame the off center entrance extending into the porch.
Painted sandstone covers the base of the home while shingles cover the top half. There is unique landscaping that takes over the backyard including original trees, stamped concrete, and a nice, furnished patio area. The owner claims the outside of the house is primarily original, except for a few paint jobs that cover the sandstone and the porch as to avoid erosion. The porch opens up to the large, original sunroom with pillars, new blue and yellow paint, and original flooring that is in the perfect location for sun exposure through the old glass windows that span the walls.
The foyer and dining room feature unique paint jobs crafted by the former owner Shanon Lisk. At first glance this paint in the lower level of the house will fool anyone into thinking it is wallpaper. The owner recounted how when they had first bought the house she had searched for hours for a seam in the “wall paper” because it seemed to be done so well. The paint jobs are radically different with a multicolored swirl pattern in the foyer and a multiple toned earthly feel to the dining room.
There is also an innovative paint job in the refurbished kitchen that consists of black paint that looks similar to a chalk board which is used as a fun artwork area for kids and adults. Any light color will do to write on it and the concept keeps kids, and adults too, entertained for hours. It’s a party game in it of itself. Not that the owners condone teaching kids to write on walls or anything!
Going up the stairs into the roomy loft area, a unique entryway leads you to the cupola which is currently being used as an exercise area for the time being. The loft also features original exposed rafters on the ceiling that somewhat resemble a barn roof. The newly remodeled bathroom which includes a large skylight makes the loft a perfect area for guests to stay. The vantage point out of the cupola window gives guests a perfect view of the beautiful 10th street neighborhood.
Throughout the house you will find doors from the home’s beginning that feature different metal door knobs that still resemble an antique look to them. Some of the wooden doors have decorative aspects and have never been refurbished or renovated. The house can be separated between the dining room and the foyer by two, white pocket doors that can be shown or hidden to open or close the space. The original windows throughout the house are wide and feature clear glass as to allow in maximum light.
The house’s prime location near Boise High School and downtown, along with an open floor plan, made this house an ideal party place in the later 20th century. It was a prime hot spot to hang at under the old owners who later had to refurbish the house to increase the monetary value of the house, as well as to cover up all the damage caused by a hard party life.
While the first architect of the house is (at the moment) unknown to us, this house bears remarkable resemblance to the Joseph Kinney House on Warm Springs which was designed by the Tourtellotte and Hummel Architecture Company in 1903. The use of sandstone and Queen Anne style are featured in both houses. Much of the outside features are eerily similar. The inside is unknown. While it is not recorded that Tourtellotte and Hummel designed and build 906 N. 10th St, we speculate that they did design it.
The current owner was the one to give us the tip about the Warm Springs House. He had seen the house while passing by and noticed the similarities to his own house. After careful study and observation he concluded that they must have been designed by the same person. There is no solid proof (that we found anyway) to support this claim but the architectural similarities are too numerous to ignore.
They have taken on the task of preserving the history of the house by restoring this home to its former glory. It was obvious with the first meeting with the Jonsiks that they have love and passion for this home and have gone to great lengths to find the full story about it, as well as preserve its historical features. Even if some parts of its story may always remain a mystery, a sense of knowing sometimes outweighs the hard facts. They know and love their house and sometimes that’s all that matters.