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Posted on: May 29, 2020

Heritage Award Honors Remodel of English Tudor Revival House

Edina, Minn., May 21, 2020 – The detailed remodel of an English Tudor Revival home on the original site of the Henry F. Brown farmhouse has received the 2020 Edina Heritage Preservation Award.

Julie and Doug Baker purchased the house in the 4600 block of Browndale Avenue in 2015 and began the process to modernize and expand the living spaces while preserving the character of the house. Rehkamp Larson Architects Inc. and Dovetail Renovation Inc. restored and reused the original woodwork, carvings and architectural elements of the 1932 house and replicated more to wrap the Tudor elements of the design around the entire home. The work also moved the garage doors from the front of the house to the side. That then allowed them to replicate the custom brick and stonework across the front facade.

The final result, which Mayor Jim Hovland called “spectacular,” impressed the members of the Edina Heritage Preservation Commission, who chose to honor the home. The Edina Heritage Award, given annually since 2003, honors an individual, family, company or organization that has contributed to the historic fabric of the community and made an outstanding contribution to the preservation, rehabilitation, restoration and use of a heritage resource in Edina

“Their renovation and expansion took tremendous care to honor the home’s historic features and match them on all the facades,” said Heritage Preservation Commissioner Jane Lonnquist.

The commission also noted the house preserves more than architecture. Browndale Avenue is named for the farm that occupied the land in that area. In 1922, Samuel Thorpe purchased the Browndale Farm, combining it with two other major properties to develop the Country Club District, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. In the early days of the current house, St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church was started in the home’s basement and its first pancake breakfast was served there. The church soon moved into its own building at 4439 W. 50th St., and the restoration of that site received the 2011 Heritage Preservation Award.

More about the home’s restoration will be in the Late 2020 issue of About Town magazine.

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