The Town With a “Living House Museum”
You won’t find many small towns in California with so many historic homes.
Yreka is blessed with over 70 pre-1900 homes, including many beautiful Victorians, most of which are in excellent condition. All of them sit within a few blocks of our historic downtown (Miner Street) and can be viewed easily on foot. A plaque on each house tells the name of the original owner and the year it was built.
Here are a few examples of what you can see on a short walk around Yreka’s historic district.
The Gillis Mansion-
The largest historic home in town (about 8,000 sq. feet) was built in 1895 by judge H. B. Gillis. Sadly, the house fell into disrepair by the late 1960’s, at one point selling for just $18,000! Fortunately, a series of owners restored this old beauty, including most recently a new roof and beautiful paint job. Currently a private residence.
The Von Choate-Rosborough-Tapscott House-
One of the oldest homes in town is also one the most architecturally interesting. Built in 1858 by Silvanus Van Choate, owner of Yreka’s first newspaper, it is a beautiful example of the style known as Gothic Revival or Victorian Gothic. Currently an apartment house.
The Stockslager-Farraher House-
The original house was built in 1873 by brickmason Fredrick Stackslager, but was completely rebuilt in 1899 by the prominent attorney James Farraher. The current owner has done extensive work on the house, including the beautiful paint job and lovely landscaping. Currently a private residence.
The Anselm Kaiser House-
Built in 1897 by a local merchant who due to various reasons never occupied the house, finally selling it 1903 for the princely sum of $1,600! Originally a four-bedroom, one-bath house, it was greatly expanded in 1940, and for many years was an apartment house. Currently a bed and breakfast inn.
The Otis Spalding House-
Built in 1905 by a young doctor, reflecting the time when the favored architectural style was changing from Victorian to Bungalow. The house was expanded in the 1930s by glassing in the original porch on the front and south side. It’s another house that eventually became quite run down, but the current owners have beautifully restored it. Currently a private residence.