The Home of Howard Lumber


Mrs. Alma K. Howard, civic leader and president of Howard Lumber Company died, January 21, at age 91. Her home, built about 1915, at 4100 Quail Avenue, was in many details typical of the Prairie School of Architecture, as first sketched by Frank Lloyd Wright. Her husband, Thomas, was president of the First Robbinsdale State Bank Home of T. P. Howard, 1921-53 and a charter member of the Lions Club. The home was later occupied by another bank president, Kenneth Sheehan of First Bank Robbinsdale.

The Howard home on Quail Avenue North

In March, the last of the original houses in Robbinsdale was torn down. It had been built in 1854, it is believed, by J. S. Malbon on the south side of 40th Avenue, a third of a block west of Broadway. It was small, had an addition, and in the opinion of the Minnesota Historical Society wasn’t worth preserving. (Land office records record “U.S. to J. S. Malbon, Nov. 27, 1854 – 117.30 acres.”)

The Worden house at 4035 West Broadway was built by Dr. Seestrom in 1887. Russ Worden and his family moved into the home in 1940. The house was removed to make way for a dance studio and office building in 1977.

The Robbinsdale HRA, previously devoted only to the “scattered site” housing program and the senior citizen building, was now beginning economic redevelopment. Land, including that of the oldest house, was cleared for the Wilder office building and the Kay Marie and Carol Dance Studio. A state law, passed in 1971, permitted Robbinsdale, along with Minneapolis, to use tax increment bonding for the renewal of commercial areas.

The old Fink place at 449 40th1/2 was built in 1854. It was the oldest home in the city when it was removed to make way for a dance studio and an office building in 1977.

This post is part of a series loosely based on the book Robbinsdale Then and Now by Helen Blodgett.

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