The Ephraim Bowen House

The Ephraim Bowen House | Brodhead, Wis


The House

Ephraim Bowen built this exemplary Italianate Victorian house located on 1st Center Avenue in 1868.

June 2021 | Ephraim Bowen House

June 2021 | Ephraim Bowen House

The following article / clipping was found in the Brodhead Historical Society's archives, written by Dorothy Gessert

"An attractive, historic old home built before 1884 stands at 901 First Center Avenue, Brodhead. Ephraim Bowen purchased the land in 1868.

The house is an architecturally significant example of the Italianate style in Green County. Located in a historic residential neighborhood near the downtown, the cream brick building is distinguished by its classically-inspired detail.

It has wide eaves supported by modillion-like brackets, a denticulated cornice, and ornate cresting atop its low pitched hip roof.

The two story, L-shaped house is composed of rectangular shapes, with rear extensions. Tall proportions are underscored by tall regularly placed windows topped by flat stone lintels. Four stone chimneys rise well above the roof top. The front entry porch features an entablature which echoes the main cornice, supported by pillars and fluted pilasters.

The rectilinear character of the house, and the formality of its ornament, reflect the quality of being proper and also the prosperity of Brodhead in the decades after the Civil War.

Ephraim Brown, the original owner of the house, was first established with his brother, Hiram, in the mercantile and produce business in Albany.

In 1867, he moved to Green Bay, purchased 2,000 acres of pine timber and became involved in the lumber business. He later returned to Brodhead where he was a banker.

W.W. Roderick, a native of Fayette County, Pennsylvania, began business in Brodhead in 1865 as a clerk. In 1878, he established his own business on Center Avenue where he sold dry goods, clothing, boots and shoes.

W.W. Roderick purchased the house in 1890.

Lyman Roderick later came into ownership of the house. A living room wall was removed and extensive alteration was done to modernize the kitchen and baths. The south porch was built on by the Rodericks. They added a two-car garage and enclosed the porch. The Roderick family had elegant chandeliers from England in stalled."

Ephraim Bowen

Ephraim Bowen House circa 1976

Ephraim Bowen House circa 1976