Ellis Ave., amidst a five street intersection, among them Bannock and 25th St., is an area of land that was pioneered in the late 1800s and early 1900s by a farmer by the name of Ellis who worked the surrounding land as farmland. In 1909 he subdivided the land with a total of three lots, and in 1910 he built 2435 Ellis Ave. (recognized as 1911 by the Ada County Assessors) which is a home that has significant historical, architectural, and anecdotal detail.
2435 Ellis Ave. has gone through a series of interesting yet stable changes in ownership over the past 99 years and has definitely reflected the time period within each stage of the house. According to the current owner, like its sister house which housed a woman for over 65 years until her death, this home only changed ownership between around three or four families over the course of the first 60 years. Once the house emerged into the 70?s, a series of changes began to occur, that would later have to be fixed. Around this time, a founder of Goicoechea law offices bought the house and after what is believed to be one more owner, and that it was made into a rental, 2435 Ellis Ave. ended up as bank property, where the current owner bought it in 1985. Within the next 24 years the house went through a series of architectural changes and remodels.
The original structure of the home was extremely simplistic as it served as a small farmhouse. Although the beginning square footage is unknown, there is record of it as a one story home with one bedroom, one bathroom, a basement used for storage, and a coal burning fireplace. Architecturally, the inside is interesting because it is still very open, as one room flows into the next throughout the house. Also inside, is the wood flooring that is still the original fir and maple woods that were used in Meridian High School, which was built around 1904, probably extracted in a remodeling of the school. Another significant original detail is the fact that the welded, stained glass style windows once used on the front of the house have been salvaged and are now used inside the home.
The majority of the remodeling was done by the current owner in 1997, although a second room was added in the 1920s, and consists of a kitchen, which has been made modern with new appliances and cupboards, a living room, which has new, large windows looking into the backyard, a basement, which has a number of original hidden rooms, tunnels, a dark room, and hardwood floors from Meridian Middle School, and a patio extension on the back of the house, to make a total of around a 1,000 sq. ft. addition.
On the opposite side of the house a new entryway has been made, enclosing the original front with the new, using new double paned windows, to effectively insulate and preserve the 1910 facade, also because the original front of the house was experiencing severe sagging because there were only a few beams holding it up. Furthermore, the actual architectural style of the home changed when new trusses replaced the flat prairie roof, creating a now craftsman or bungalow style. The current owner also built a second story that includes four elongated bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a mini sauna. The hallway bathroom that features the sauna is unique because of the skylight that is seen in the shower that actually connects with the skylight that is seen in the back bedroom and the bathroom is on the corner of the original chimney, giving the owner a chance to use incorporate the chimney into the bathroom as part of it naturally protrudes form a corner of the wall.
The home also still has the original formal dining room and living room in which both have stayed much the same. The only difference in terms of the flooring, is the hardwood, that for many years, specifically during the 70?s was covered with shag, and according to the owner, the dining room walls had upwards of ten layers of wallpaper on them that had to be scraped off. But the room, although with different windows, does still have the basic pop-out structure it was intended to have. To the right of the dining room there is a small cabinet which is using two of the three original window panes that were on the front of the house and the third is one that the owner managed to find, fortunately, matching almost perfectly.
Another point of architectural interest is the backyard, in which a trellis was added on the back porch along with a small wood balcony with steps to the yard. Further in the back, from the fence line are two log structures that were built by the owner; one being another sauna, and one being a structure built in order to store items like a garage, which the house altogether lacks.
Not only is this home historically and architecturally significant, but it also holds many stories worth telling, one of these is that, according to the owner, a man who once lived in the home was trying to fix the roof, and was doing so when he fell to his death. Although no ghost stories have come from this event, small anecdotes such as this help give the home character and bring it to life.
2435 Ellis Ave. is a home that has been standing for almost a century and although it has gone through a number of interesting ownership changes, countless renovations, and is far from its 1910 origins as it now consists of over 4,000 sq. ft., this home is still one of great historical, architectural, and anecdotal significance.