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Preserving our Past, January: The Benjamin and Anna Rosenberg Residence

Jan. 22, 2014

 The Benjamin and Anna Rosenberg Residence, 5200 N. Lake Drive

Reference Number: 9303

By Tom Fehring:

This is a large, Tudor Revival residence on an extensive property abutting Lake Michigan.  It is listed on the Wisconsin AHI as 5210 N. Lake Drive, apparently in error since there is no such address.  The description from the Wisconsin State Historical Society 1980 survey appears to match this residence. 

The structure is lannon stone and brick with some ½ timbering and stucco at the second floor.  The home originally consisted of 12 rooms and a three car garage.  A substantial addition to the west was added sometime after 1943.  

The home was constructed for Benjamin and Anna Rosenberg.  Benjamin Rosenberg was the president of The Grand women’s apparel shop.  

The residence was sold in 1943 to Kurtis R. Froedtert, chairman of the board and president of the Froedtert Grain and Malting Company. 

The residence sits on a large parcel of land and overlooks Lake Michigan – formerly part of the site of the Pabst Whitefish Bay Resort.  

An intensive architecture and history survey, conducted in Whitefish Bay between 2010 and 2011, determined that this house is “Individually Eligible for Listing in the National Register of Historic Places.”  The intensive survey noted the house as an exceptional example of Tudor Revival styling, with a stone and half-timbered exterior and a slate roof. 

Designed by Richard Philipp, this residence clearly evidences his ability as a designer of merit. Distinguished by a stucco and stone exterior with half-timber exposed framing accents on a portion of the second level, the residence evidences the work of master craftsmen.

In discussing the works of the architect, architectural historian Richard W. E. Perrin stated that, it is in “the adaptation of the Tudor English forms that Richard Philipps’s ability as a designer was most evident. Some of his most important houses of mansion proportions were designed by him for prominent families throughout Wisconsin.”  

Architectural historian Traci Schnell informed us that the original architectural drawings are on file in the Wisconsin Architecture Archive, which is maintained at the Milwaukee Public Library. The drawings reveal the exquisite architectural details Philipp designed into this residence.

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