209 East Frederick St.      |      Rhinelander, WI 54501      |      715 369-3504      |      info@cranberryhillbedandbreakfast.com

Architectural Information

This two and one half story, frame house is the most ornate Queen Anne residence in Rhinelander. It has an irregular plan and features a three-story, round, shingled tower with a conical roof and exposed rafters; and a partially enclosed front porch with closed brick rails and quarry tile flooring. The porch appears to date from the mid-teens to late- 1920s. The house has polygonal bay windows, a cutaway balcony on the front façade at the second story, a hip-roofed dormer with diamonds-over-one window and a pattered brick chimney.
The interior is elaborate. The vestibule has a round bay, and a paneled wood staircase enriched with fluted pilasters and a newel post ornamented with acanthus leaves. The parlor and library, west of the vestibule, are separated by a cased opening featuring classical columns. The ceiling is beamed, and there are two fireplaces, one of which has a mantel decorated with acanthus leaves. The dining room, east of the vestibule, has a polygonal bay with a cottage window that has a leaded-glass header. The dining room is also beamed, and has paneled wood wainscot.
This house was built for newlyweds Edward and Clara Brown in 1892; the architects were (Allan) Conover and (Lew) Porter of Madison. Edward O. Brown (1859-1935) was born in Stevens Point, the son of a prominent lumberman Edward D. Brown. Edward Brown was a graduate of West Point (1881) and served one year in the United States Army Corps of Engineers before joining his brothers, Webster E. and Anderson W., in the Brown Brothers Lumber Company, then located in Stevens Point. The Brown Brothers relocated their headquarters to Rhinelander in 1882; Edward Brown remained in Stevens Point until 1883. In addition to his involvement in the Brown Brother Lumber Company, Edward Brown had financial interests in, and/or, served on the board of directors of the Merchants State Bank, the Rhinelander Paper Company, the Rhinelander Refrigerator Company, the Rhinelander News, and the Rhinelander Creamery. Brown was also founder of St. Augustine Episcopal Church. The Brown family lived in this house until at least 1936. Circa 1940, Folke Becker bought the house. In 1928, Becker was appointed general manager of the Rhinelander Paper Company. Becker modernized the Paper Company plant, improving the financial condition of the company. He showed great skill in managing the company, such that the Rhinelander Paper Company became universally regarded as a producer of high quality packaging papers, and profits soared. The Becker family owned this house until at least 1970. The Brown House is an outstanding and intact example of the Queen Anne style, and contributes to the National Register of eligible Frederick Street Historic District.