Wuehrmann's 1929 Model Home

Here is a wonderful little home located at the corner of San Marcial and Louisville in El Paso, originally built in early 1929 and opened as a Model Home on the 29th of July of that year. It was designed by El Paso architect W.G. Wuehrmann, a graduate of the Art Institute of Chicago and also of Chicago's Armour Institute. After graduating, he traveled to England, France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Holland and Belgium where he continued his studies.

After settling in El Paso in 1919, he partnered with Scott Lehmann until 1924, when Lehmann moved to New York. Notable buildings designed by the firm and Wuehrmann as an individual, included the Army Y.M.C.A., the Union High School in Las Cruces, and the beautiful First Baptist Church building at the corner of Montana and Virginia. He also drew up the El Paso Electric Company Building at Mills and Kansas, and a number of other structures. He was one of El Paso's most respected architects until his retirement in 1970, after desigining a home at 3110 Mesa Verde in Northeast El Paso. His architectural career in the Sun City lasted 51 years, beating Otto Thorman's paltry second place 49 years, as the city's historically longest tenured architect.

In 1956 he retired from the City Plan Commission, where he had served since 1940, many years as the President. In 1957, he also served as President of the El Paso Archaeological Society. He passed away in 1978 here in his adopted hometown, El Paso.

The home's architectural style is described by the architect as a English Cottage style, and was specifically built on a corner so Wuehrmann could feature two attractive elevations in his plan. As stated above, the house was a Model Home, and was fully furnished. The walls are a combination brick and stucco, with high brick chimneys that "add a striking effect", according to period newspapers.

An unusual feature of the home is that it is built on a steel frame, similar to larger commercial structures. The home was partially sponsored by the Institute of Steel Construction, and was part of a development program they were performing in the area. The contractor for the building was H.T. Ponsford & Sons. A red brick surround, long missing from the extant structure, was built by contractor Dave Crockett.

Text and research provided to Sketchclub.net by Mark Stone, citing period newspaper articles accessed at newspapers.com

Google Earth Street View accessed 2020

Google Earth Street View accessed 2020

Google Earth Street View accessed 2020