summit ave.

My sister has arrived for a visit giving me the opportunity to be a tourist in my own town.  On Saturday we headed over to a yard sale on Summit Avenue in St. Paul.  According to Wikipedia, Summit Ave “remains a well-preserved example of a Victorian residential boulevard.”  We did the official walking tour of Summit through the Minnesota Historical Society the last time my sister visited, so after checking out the yard sale, we headed of down some side streets instead of staying on the main boulevard.

saturday tour header
It was a gloomy day, and I was taking pictures with my phone which I am no good at.  I was kicking myself for not bringing my camera.  My But I’ll still share our adventure with you.

Behind the beautiful mansions you’ll find some original cobblestone alleys.

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The houses just off Summit are not quite as grand, but they are still lovely and many have fab gardens.

saturday summit ave with fountainIt’s a great place to get ideas for your own garden planter combinations, or perhaps a faux bois fence.

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Ultimately we ended up back on Summit Ave, where we admired some of the more extravagant homes including this one that happens to be for sale.  The price?  A mere $1,695,000 (check out this link to see photos of the interior).  Let’s buy two!

Saturday Summit Ave brick house

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The detail on the columns of the brick house is just gorgeous.

saturday summit pillar

We also peered into this secret garden.

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We ended our morning with lunch and mimosas on the patio at the Wild Onion on Grand Avenue.

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9 thoughts on “summit ave.

  1. You had me at cobblestones. Lovely neighborhood. I popped over to the home for sale I think I like the grounds the most. The home is lovely but might big cannot imagine trying to take care of it. I like to putter which seems to lend itself, at least in my mind, to cottages.
    Gee it’s nice you got to spend time with your sister.


  2. We have a few of those fabulous big Victorian houses in my town, also. One started out for sale at a cool 1 million and I think it is down to 500,000.00 after 6 years on the market. No doubt, it is worth that, but Richmond is in the middle of nowhere.

    It takes a person with a very good job or an inheritance to afford one of the these homes now with the constant upkeep, big lawns, taxes, heating bills, etc. I think if three generations could live under one roof, it would be feasible and would make a good financial arrangement.

    There are some people in the historic district here, that paint one side of a huge house a summer and they just go round and round and round.

    Some of these big houses here were affiliated with my building, the old bank. I have a memoir written in 1911 from a man who grew up here. He said, in the 1860’s, his father’s parents lived in the big house on the right side of the house he grew up in and his mother’s parents lived in the big house on the left side. One grandparent had the cows and horses and chickens, the middle house had the gardens, and the other grandparents had the orchard and bush fruit like raspberries, etc. They shared the work and the food. I wonder how they all got along. All the children went to college and became presidents of famous companies so they must have been doing something right.

    I would love to see these places in person, but I never get to Minneapolis anymore. When I lived in northern Wisconsin we always flew out of Minneapolis. Thanks for showing us these fabulous works of art. The woodwork, ironwork, all of it, is amazing.


    1. My sister and I were joking that we could move the whole extended family into the place, but in reality, we still couldn’t afford it! I hope that there are still people out there who can take on these gorgeous historic homes and keep them going. It would be sad to see them fall into ruin, or not be kept up anymore. They certainly are gorgeous and filled with beautiful craftsmanship.


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