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Short History Lesson: William H. Phipps House

On The Boards & Around Stillwater | Over the past few months we've been measuring, drawing, planning, and collaborating on this remarkable Queen Anne home, commonly known as the William H. Phipps House in Hudson, WI. We've already shared current progress on the home's restoration plans as well as planned kitchen additions but wanted to take some time to celebrate the home's amazing history.

In 1875, William H. Phipps accepted a position as land commissioner of the North Wisconsin Railroad Company and moved, with his wife, from Madison to Hudson, WI. They built their home there in 1884 — an impressive and highly detailed 2-1/2 story Queen Anne. It's been described by a local historian as the 'grand dame' of Queen Anne houses in Hudson.

Phipps became a significant resident of Hudson. He was elected to the St. Croix County Board of Commissioners, served three terms as Hudson's mayor and two terms in the Wisconsin Senate, and was director and eventually president of the First National Bank of Hudson. He also was involved with and helped fund the local Presbyterian Church and was influential in the establishment of the Hudson Public Library. His son Stephen went on to start the William H. Phipps Foundation which established the Hudson Memorial Hospital and the Phipps Center for the Arts.

William H. Phipps passed away in 1924.

After Mrs. Phipps passed away in 1935, the home had a series of brief owners before it was converted to a nursing home in 1951. At this time, a fire alarm and indoor sprinkler system were added. The Hudson Rest Home occupied the space until 1966, then it was used as a rooming house for a short time.

It was eventually converted back to a single family home and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1987. It was deemed worthy of preservation because of its association with a significant resident in Hudson — William H. Phipps — and its well-preserved and largely unaltered Queen Anne style of architecture.

In 1990, it was sold again and converted to a bed and breakfast. It's been a popular destination in Hudson for over 30 years.

The new owner's of the historic home wish to convert the stunning Queen Anne back to a single family home while ensuring she stands proudly for the next century.

Historic photos provided by The Octagon House Museum.

History from The Republican Eagle and William H. Phipps House National Register of Historic Places Inventory - Nomination Form.


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