Baumgardner's Marble Works


Baumgardner's Marble Works

In 1890 John Baumgardner supplied cemetery monuments and building and paving stones from his shop on the northeast corner of Detroit and Catherine Streets. His stepfather, German immigrant Anton Eisele, opened a marble works to your right on this side of the street in 1868. Behind the works, Eisele built a brick home that still stands at 216 Catherine.

By the time of Eisele's death in 1887 the business had expanded across the street to include the brick Italianate building and additions seen below. Note the carved stone lintels on the building in this photo and on Eisele's house. The brick barn in the background still stands on the corner of Fifth and Catherine with an 1887 date in its front gable. Among the first in Ann Arbor to use electricity, Baumgardner changed the firm's name to the Ann Arbor Electric Granite Works, acclaimed for an "electric polishing machine that gives such a high, mirror-like finish to his work."

Frame location: In Sculpture Park, southeast corner of Fourth and Catherine, facing northeast down Detroit Street

Collection info: OAAT-2, p48

This image may be protected by copyright law. Contact the Bentley Historical Library for permission to reproduce, display or transmit this image. Repository: Bentley Historical Library




Anton Eisele House and Marble Works, 1869


Anton Eisele House and Marble Works, 1869

216 Catherine Street

Anton Eisele House and Marble Works, 1869
Creator: Eisele, Anton

The unusual carved stone lintels above the windows of this house are a clue to the profession of its builder. Anton Eisele, an immigrant from Germany, owned a stone-cutting business specializing in American and Italian marbles. Originally in partnership with his brother John W. in a business organized in 1868, he was prosperous enough to build this house in 1869. By the time the 1874 Atlas of Washtenaw County published an engraving of the house and Marble Works at the southeast corner of Catherine and Detroit Streets, Eisele was in business for himself.
Using stone and marble cutting skills learned in Germany, Eisele supplied both the marble and the carving for tombstones and other cemetery work. Recent renovations to a nearby building at 216 North Fourth Avenue yielded discarded fragments of his carving art.

After Eisele died in 1887, his stepson John Baumgardner continued to live in the house and run the business for which he built a two-story brick building across the street. It too exhibited the fine carving which characterized the family home but it was demolished in the 1930s for a gas station (now Argiero's Restaurant). Baumgardner expanded the business from tombstones to building stone, used primarily for sidewalks. Some of these still line the east side of Main Street between Washington and Liberty Streets. The house remains as a testament to the stone carving skills brought to Ann Arbor by Eisele and other Germans. It is now the home and office of attorney Pauline Rothmeyer.

Rights Held By: 
Photos used to illustrate Historic Buildings, Ann Arbor, Michigan / by Marjorie Reade and Susan Wineberg.



Anton Eisele House, 1869


Anton Eisele House, 1869

216 Catherine Street

Anton Eisele House, 1869
Creator: Eisele, Anton

The unusual carved stone lintels above the windows of this house are a clue to the profession of its builder. Anton Eisele, an immigrant from Germany, owned a stone-cutting business specializing in American and Italian marbles. Originally in partnership with his brother John W. in a business organized in 1868, he was prosperous enough to build this house in 1869. By the time the 1874 Atlas of Washtenaw County published an engraving of the house and Marble Works at the southeast corner of Catherine and Detroit Streets, Eisele was in business for himself.

Using stone and marble cutting skills learned in Germany, Eisele supplied both the marble and the carving for tombstones and other cemetery work. Recent renovations to a nearby building at 216 North Fourth Avenue yielded discarded fragments of his carving art.

After Eisele died in 1887, his stepson John Baumgardner continued to live in the house and run the business for which he built a two-story brick building across the street. It too exhibited the fine carving which characterized the family home but it was demolished in the 1930s for a gas station (now Argiero's Restaurant). Baumgardner expanded the business from tombstones to building stone, used primarily for sidewalks. Some of these still line the east side of Main Street between Washington and Liberty Streets. The house remains as a testament to the stone carving skills brought to Ann Arbor by Eisele and other Germans. It is now the home and office of attorney Pauline Rothmeyer.

Rights Held By: 
Photos used to illustrate Historic Buildings, Ann Arbor, Michigan / by Marjorie Reade and Susan Wineberg.



A. L. Noble House and Carriage House, 1882 and 1892


A. L. Noble House and Carriage House, 1882 and 1892

320-322 South Division Street

A. L. Noble House and Carriage House, 1882 and 1892

Adelbert L. Noble came to Ann Arbor in 1869 to study at the University of Michigan. "Difficulty with his eyes would not permit of his continuing his studies and he turned his mind toward business" wrote the county history of 1881. After six years in the clothing business with Joe T. Jacobs, Noble sold his interest and opened the Star Clothing Store at the corner of Main and Washington Streets. Star specialized in "Men's, Boys' and Children's" clothing, advertising "Plain Figures and One Price."

By 1883 Noble was successful enough to buy this piece of land from Henry Bennett who had built the Kempf House next door in 1853. Noble erected a large and imposing brick house, transitional in style from the Italianate to Queen Anne. The slate roof, decorative chimneys, pressed brick, arched windows, and carved wood details on porches, gable corners, and brackets show the influence of both styles. The fine stonework over the windows illustrates the craftsmanship of Anton Eisele.

In 1892 Noble became the first president of the State Savings Bank. He erected the carriage house in the rear of the property and the two buildings form a unique grouping, now very rare in central Ann Arbor.

After Noble's death in 1894, followed by his wife in 1902, the house had a succession of owners until 1920 when Dr. David M. Cowie purchased it. Dr. Cowie, a physician and Professor of Pediatrics and Infectious Diseases at the University of Michigan, turned the home into a private hospital. One of Cowie's major achievements was the adoption on a statewide basis of the use of iodized salt to prevent goiter. After Cowie's death in 1940, the house and carriage house were both converted to apartments and remain as such today.

Rights Held By: 
Photos used to illustrate Historic Buildings, Ann Arbor, Michigan / by Marjorie Reade and Susan Wineberg.



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