Wednesday, March 14, 2007

History at 2447 Bryant Avenue South
Preservation enthusiasts are still raving about the John G. and Minnie Gluek house in south Minneapolis, which was open for an estate sale over the weekend. The mansion, at 2447 Bryant Avenue South, was owned by Tessie Bowman for the past 66 years. During her lifetime, she acquired "massive amounts ... of china, glassware and silver that armies could have used, solid mahogany dressers, china cabinets, sofas, cribs and children's beds and toys," according to Madeline Douglass, who attended the estate sale. Douglass called the house and its belongings a "temple to late Victorian and early Edwardian life," but worried that the dwelling itself was in "incredibly rough shape [with] wood rot, massive leaks inside, crumbling plaster," etc. MPR reporter Jim Bickal produced a story on the house and its belongings. (Photo by Larissa Anderson)


mdougla said...

It would be wonderful if the people
who rescue these old houses would
keep a detailed blog of everything
they do...discoveries, plans, architects, contractors, every step
of the process.

This would be a good education for
us all and inspiring to others!

Todd Melby said...

More blogs!

KO said...

I spent a few years dreaming that one day, after Tessie Bowman's time on this earth was over, I'd be in a position to buy that place. Alas, it is not to be. It's really spectacular sitting there on the corner. It just kills me that I am no longer living in Minneapolis (I stayed with a friend off and on around the corner on Colfax, and lived in the Margaret Anne on Hennepin for awhile) and can't even get a peek at the inside.
Anyone been over to see it?

Anonymous said...

I saw the house during the estate sale. I have to say, it wasn't a pristine view, given the masses of humanity and stuff, stuff, stuff! That Tessie sure did like her psychedelic frocks and multiples of everything. I was most taken with the kitchen, which had never been updated. She had dozens of cast iron skillets and not a fondue pot in sight. But, really, it was hard to appreciate the structure itself for all the mounds.

mdougla said...

Here's another story on the Glueck/
Bowman mansion with a great a house pretty much untouched since it was built...that's good and bad...
Good luck to it's new owners!

Anonymous said...

I met Tess back in the mid 70's. I was in my 20's, she was in her 60's. We were very close for many years. I lived in the Gluek house for several months after her husband died. It's true the place wasn't updated much during the years Tess lived there. But it was obviously updated somewhat. For instance, instead of tearing out the original icebox, it was converted to a refrigerator/freezer and worked great in the 70's when I knew her. And no, the antique wood stove was not Tess' cooking stove, just one more of her many antiques. She had a gas stove from the 40s that she cooked on. And boy, could that woman cook! She was also pretty handy and always working, working, working around the place. She repaired the front pillars with her own two hands. She always talked about selling everything including the house, but she just never found the time I guess. She was one of a kind that one ... I'll never forget her.

Colleen said...

My grandmother was Tessie's best friend. Our whole family called her Aunt Tessie. My mom was the oldest of 9 kids and Tessie sort of taught my grandmother how to take care of all the kids. I moved away from Minnesota in 1999 and came back for my high school reunion in 2004. She gave my boyfriend and I the WHOLE tour including the ballroom. I went with my grandfather to the funeral when her husband died.
We always talked about the differences in all the variations of china and glass she collected and how to negotiate good prices. She always made me fresh popovers and roasted chickens when I came over too.