Historic, Modern Home for sale on the South Hill | Home & Garden
One of Spokane's most historic homes is on the market for the first time ever. You can own the mid-century, Modern home of Joel E. Ferris, II and his wife Mary Jean for $1.1 million.
The South Hill home is one of only two Modern architecture homes listed on the Spokane Register of Historic Places. The home was designed by Bruce Walker and completed in 1955. Walker also designed the Ridpath Motor Inn (1964), the Spokane Opera House (1974) and the Metropolitan Financial Center which is now occupied by Wells Fargo (1984). In 1960, the Ferris home won the First Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects.
Joel and Mary Jean loved the simplicity of Modern, post-war, design. They opened JOEL Inc. in Downtown Spokane in 1950 because the market for Modern furniture and home goods was lacking. The Ferris' wanted their family home to reflect this love, but the neighborhood association around Comstock Park didn't approve of the unique design.
Joel's uncle, the namesake for Joel E. Ferris High School, offered up a portion of his land so his nephew could build his dream home. Soon, the family was enjoying their Modern home on 16th Ave., just a few blocks away from Manito Park.
“It's its own little private world there,” says Sam Ferris, son of Joel and Mary Jean, “It's really a special place.”
Ferris describes the home as a “neat place to grow up”, but he didn't understand the importance of the design until he was an adult. With the passing of his father in 2002 and his mother in 2011, Ferris is heading up the sale of the home with spokanemidcentury.com.
“It just seemed like this is the time, “ Ferris says of the decision to sell, “It's time to share it with another family.”
The Ferris home has been on the market for ten months and has gained national attention. In December 2012, the sale was featured in the New York Times and is currently featured in this month's issue of Dwell Magazine.
“It's unique in such a way that it's gotten national attention,” says Ferris.
The home has been owned by the Ferris family since it was built, and the land that it sits on has been in the family for 108 years. Who ever buys the home will own not only a mid-century master piece, but also a piece of Spokane history.
To learn more about Modern architecture in Spokane you can visit the SPOMa: Spokane Modern Architecture exhibit at the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture through January 2014.