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Hi, I'm Tamera, a professional wedding, portrait and boudoir photographer in Colorado Springs. But this blog isn't about my professional work; no, it's a daily love note to my beautiful city, where I've lived for most of my life. I love it here and I hope you enjoy seeing Colorado Springs through my eyes and lens!

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20 September 2018

The Alexander House


I had a big Colorado Springs History Nerd moment recently, when I was lucky enough to see the inside of a home I've loved from afar for many years, the Alexander House at 1830 Wood Avenue. I have always wanted to see the inside of this 1906 Tudor! I've even fantasized about buying it if I ever won the Lotto. Sometimes my job hands me the coolest opportunities, and this was one of them. I have a bride whose mother is close friends with the newest owner of this home, and since they will all be getting ready at the Alexander House on the morning of the wedding, we decided to have a powwow there last week. How exciting! I didn't take any pictures of the interior, to protect the owner's privacy, but I can tell you that it has an extremely rare Choralcelo pipe organ, a ballroom/music room, a solarium, and downstairs there are "gentleman's quarters" -- an old school man cave, billiards table and all. Holy mackerel! It's so beautiful inside! And it's over 12,000 square feet! A few details on the history:
  • It was designed by Thomas MacLaren and built in 1906 for railroad magnate Thomas Curtin.
  • It changed hands in 1914 to Berne Hopkins, who added the ballroom/music room for his wife, who was an opera singer, in 1918. The room has wonderful acoustics, not surprisingly, as it was custom designed to enhance the aforementioned Choralcelo.
  • In 1925 the home was acquired by E.W. Sinsheimer, and in 1930 it was purchased by the Alexanders.
The Alexanders had a movie making company that produced mainly advertising films -- you know, like the ads you see when you go to the movies, before the feature film starts. Those ads were a big deal in decades past, and they made the Alexanders a fortune. They also had an airplane manufacturing company here in the Springs, if you can believe that! If you've lived here for long enough, the name is familiar to you. The last I remember of Alexander Film, they were operating in a much smaller and more modern capacity and occupying a groovy, mid-modern, flying saucer-esque building on about Palmer Park and Academy. I believe they closed their doors for good in around 2011 or 2012, sadly.

At any rate, the Alexander House endures and is most definitely a local gem. The owner proudly showed me around. Almost all of the beautiful old details are intact, including the woodwork, molding, light fixtures and Van Briggle tiles. One bathroom downstairs hadn't been operational in decades and was basically just used as storage; the new owners found a cool old sink tucked away in the recesses of the basement and brought that bathroom back to life. The rather grand bathroom adjacent to the master suite hadn't been functional since the pipes froze in the 1950s! Again, the new homeowners repaired and replaced -- you should see it now! The entire kitchen was redone in the last year, but it's very tastefully appointed to blend in with the gracious old mansion's existing architecture. The front porch is wide and shady, and there are a couple of beautiful sitting rooms, parlors, and a grand staircase (of course!). Such a wonderful old home to wander around and explore! The grounds are lovely, too. I can't wait for this wedding. I appreciate having such a beautiful and historic backdrop to use for the getting ready photos! 

4 comments:

Jack said...

It is a beautiful house and I envy your opportunity to visit it.

Have you considered enlarging the fonts on your blog template? I read this one with reading glasses and even then nearly had my nose on the laptop screen!!!

William Kendall said...

That's a beauty!

Tamera said...

Hi Jack! I agree, the font size is puny! I use the default font size because making it larger does wonky things to the layout. So to read my own blog, I actually use the "zoom" feature and I just leave it zoomed set that way so that I don't have to do it every time I visit this page. Every browser has a zoom option. Thanks for visiting my blog! I always appreciate comments!

William Kendall said...

My eyesight's fine, so I have no problem with the font size. I imagine I'd just increase the text from 90%, which is where I like it, to 125%.