McCall Street Historic District
The McCall Street historic district is the largest historic district in the City of Waukesha. There are 143 properties in the district. The district is comprised of one commercial building and the rest are residential buildings. There are various styles of architecture found in the district including Greek Revival, American Foursquare, Queen Anne, Bungalow, and Tudor Revival. Also of note are a number of original carriage barns which are considered contributing structures in the historic district. Most of the buildings were constructed from 1860-1930, but some date earlier than 1860. This neighborhood was home to some of the most influential families in Waukesha. Some of these families were the Putneys, Miners, Kimballs, Rankins, and Breeses.
One of the earlier houses in the district is Governor Alexander Randall’s house at 120 McCall St. As Governor of Wisconsin, he raised and trained 18 regiments by the end of the first year of the Civil War. Later, he became Postmaster General of the United States. The house was built in the 1840’s in the Greek Revival Style and originally it sat on East Avenue. When the Chicago and Northwestern railroad was built in the 1880’s Governor Randall’s house was moved to its present location by the Rankin family and used as their residence until the 1890’s. Walter Rankin was the president of Carroll College. In the 1920’s the house was remodeled and covered in stucco. Recently, the stucco was removed, the original wood siding was revealed, and many of the original details were restored. The current owners, Jeff and Joe Phillips and the project contractor, Ron Raasch received the 2016 Landmarks Commission George Gunn Award for Excellence in Preservation for this work. Current Waukesha Mayor Shawn Reilly also once lived in this historic home.
Carroll University has also purchased several homes in the district, most notably along Wright Street, East Avenue, and Charles Street and has meticulously restored them to as close as original as possible. While the exterior appearance is residential, the University uses the buildings for offices, student organizations and a health center. Carroll University Vice President of Finance and Administrative Services, Ron Lostetter received the 2013 Landmarks Commission John Schoenknecht Spirit of Preservation Award in part due to work in this neighborhood.
Click here for a map of the district.