Historical Highlands

May 6, 2017

1639 Alta Vista Ave


This home was built by and for building contractor Robert J. Stark and his wife, Anastasia.

The period revival home exhibits many of the style’s primary characteristics, including a dominant front-facing gabled entry; multiple-light, leaded-glass windows; stone, brick or stucco and false half-timber sheathing (or a combination thereof); wood-shingle, slate or tile-covered gabled roofs; and a dominant chimney.

The original plans for the house were produced in 1925 by Loos-Schneider.  Loos and Schneider identify themselves on the plans as designers, but no such firm name was found in any local directories.  The two are thought to have been Arthur Loos and William C. Schneider, two draftsmen who at the time worked at the Milwaukee architectural firm of Brust & Phillip.

Homeowner Robert Stark, born in 1892 and was the son of Theodore Stark, who established a construction/contracting business in Iowa in 1891.

Robert moved his family to Milwaukee between 1917 and 1920 and established the office of Theodore Stark and Company.

After five years in the Highlands home, the Starks, who had four children — Vincent, Robert, Mary Rita and Joseph — moved in 1930 to a house on Forest Street in Wauwatosa.  They sold the Highlands house to sewer contractor Leroy (Roy) Zimmerman and his wife, Juva, who with their three children remained in the house until moving to Louisville, KY, in 1933.

The house was later owned by a few more long-term owners, including Alfred and Mae Bennett (1934-1945), Fordyce and Barbara Ross (1945-1964) and John H. and Cecelia Zwicker (1965-1982). The current owners have been in the home more than 30 years and have put significant effort into maintaining and restoring it.

When they could, they took advantage of the tax credit rehabilitation program. The house is eligible because it’s a contributing resource within a listed National Register Historic District.

Because of water damage, the living room ceiling was replaced and the sunroom at the rear was taken down to the studs and rebuilt, although it retains its original quarry tile floor. The kitchen, which had been remodeled in 1965, was updated in 2000.

Research on this home was provided by the Wauwatosa Historical Society for its “Tudors of the Washington Highlands,” home tour conducted on October 4, 2014

Year of Construction: 5/16/1925
Architect: Stark Theo & Co.
Contractor: Stark Theo & Co.
Building Material: Brick, Stone & Stucco
Original Owner: Leroy G. Zimmerman, City Dir.


Know more about this home? Please share any information you can by filling out our form.

Provide More Info

Back to Map

May 6, 2017

1636 Alta Vista Ave


Year of Construction: 12/16/1699
Architect: Master Home Builders, Inc
Contractor:Master Home Builders, Inc
Building Material: Brick
Original Owner: Erwin N. Gigot
Original Value: $33,000


Know more about this home? Please share any information you can by filling out our form.

Provide More Info

Back to Map

May 6, 2017

1623 Alta Vista Ave


Year of Construction: 8/19/1926
Architect: Geo. Schley & Sons
Contractor: Geo. Schley & Sons
Building Material: Brick & Stucco
Original Owner: Wm. T. Wood


Know more about this home? Please share any information you can by filling out our form.

Provide More Info

Back to Map

March 6, 2017

The Trial Street Lights are Here!

The 90-day trial installation has begun!  Two lights have been installed on Washington Circle and Washington Boulevard at the base of Applecroft Park.  We encourage neighbors to observe the new lighting before and after tree leaf out and provide feedback on ambience, lighting quality and the potential of enhanced home values.

Additional information about the lights can be found within the following document:

2016 WHHPC Streetlight Slides 10-11-16.

December 18, 2016

Next time you shop Amazon, consider a donation to the WHHPC!

Did You Know . . .

You can donate to your neighborhood using Amazon Purchases? Yes, that’s right, Amazon has established a program called Amazon Smile that is a simple and automatic way for you to support the Washington Highlands Historical Preservation Corporation, every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to the WHHPC. Our organization has been formally registered to receive donations and you can select by typing in our full name and picking it from the list provided online at Smile.Amazon.com..

The AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price from your eligible AmazonSmile purchases. The purchase price is the amount paid for the item minus any rebates and excluding shipping & handling, gift-wrapping fees, taxes, or service charges. Donations are made by the AmazonSmile Foundation and are not tax deductible by us.

Yes, you use the same account on Amazon.com and AmazonSmile. Your shopping cart, Wish List, wedding or baby registry, and other account settings are also the same. On your first visit to AmazonSmile (smile.amazon.com), you need to select the Washington Highlands Historical Preservation Corporation to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. They will remember your selection, and then every eligible purchase you make at smile.amazon.com will result in a donation to the WHHPC.

Here is a screen capture with our organization selected directly from the Amazon Web Site. So please, bookmark the AmazonSmile website and help the WHHPC continue to enhance and preserve our neighborhood.


December 18, 2016

Street Light Trial to Begin March 1, 2017

Proposed street light The Historic Preservation Corporation has spent many years researching the possibility of replacing our 1960’s era “cobra” style street lighting with more historically appropriate lighting.

Recent LED technology developments are helping bring this dream closer to reality. Today’s LED’s are capable of a much warmer color and provide improved color rendering at reduced energy costs.

In cooperation with the City of Wauwatosa, we have researched various LED lights to compare with the current High Pressure Sodium lighting.  A 90-day trial of the proposed new LED light source has been scheduled to begin on March 1, 2017.  The trial LED will provide higher average foot candle performance (.50 vs. .34) with markedly improved uniformity and brightness levels across the roadway and sidewalks.  Further, the overall illuminance is improved with enhanced color qualities, for both temperature (2700K) and Color Rendering Index (CRI).  The CRI is the percentage of the visual lighting spectrum emitted by a light source.  High Pressure Sodium, is very monochromatic with a 20% CRI.  Natural sun light is 100% CRI, while the trial LED has a CRI of 70%.  The trial LED 2700K temperature is a “warm” color and is very close to standard incandescent lighting.  It is the temperature of the LED bulbs in the entry marker lanterns throughout the Highlands.

Two lights will be installed on Washington Circle at the base of Applecroft Park on March 1.  The timing will give us an opportunity to assess the lighting during winter conditions leading up to Daylight Savings Time (March 11) and during leaf bud out and into full leaf out in late spring.  We encourage all of the neighbors to observe the new lighting and provide feedback on ambience, lighting quality and the potential of enhanced home values.


1616 Alta Vista Ave
December 6, 2016

1616 Alta Vista Ave

1616 Alta Vista Ave 1984

Previous Address: 302 Alta Vista Ave
Year of Construction: 1922
Architect: Walter Neumann
Original Owner: Lawrence Stone


Know more about this home? Please share any information you can by filling out our form.

Provide More Info

Back to Map

July 14, 2016

1605 Alta Vista Ave

1605 Alta Vista Ave

Previous Address: 293 Alta Vista Ave
Year of Construction: 1926
Architect: L. Stone
Contractor: Knuth E C & Co
Architecture Style: Tudor
Original Owner: Dr. Arth A. Rock
Original Value: $70,000

Back to Map
July 14, 2016

1604 Alta Vista Ave

1604 Alta Vista Ave
Previous Address: 292 Alta Vista Ave
Year of Construction: 1928
Contractor: Immel Construction Co.
Original Owner: Aug. J. Petrie

Back to Map
September 5, 2014


The Wauwatosa Historical Society has published the September edition of “Historic Wauwatosa,” a newsletter that is free for WHS members, with a focus on the upcoming Tour of Homes in the Washington Highlands (October 4, 2014).  A copy of the newsletter is available here, courtesy of the WHS.  Please enjoy this interesting preview of “The Tudors of the WashingtonHighlands”!  For more information about becoming a WHS member, please visit wauwatosahistoricalsociety.org.

Download Newsletter


Newer Posts
Older Posts