Address: 1779 Emerson Avenue South
Neighborhood: Lowry Hill
Construction Date: 1892
Contractor: Theron Potter Healy
Architect: Theron Potter Healy
Architectural Style: Colonial Revival
Historic Use: Residential – Single Family
Current Use: Residential – Single Family
Date of Local Designation: 2008
Date of National Register Designation: N/A
Area(s) of Significance: Historic Person; Historic Events; Master Builder
Period of Significance: 1892-1920
Historic Profile: The Pierson-Wold house is located at 1779 Emerson Avenue South in the Lowry Hill neighborhood of Minneapolis. Designed by renowned Minneapolis builder, Theron Potter Healy, this 1892 Colonial Revival-style house exemplifies Healy’s skill as a master builder and his success at adapting to the popular architectural styles of the early 20th century. The house also represents the development of the Lowry Hill neighborhood. Strict covenants designed by landowners Thomas Lowry and Calvin Goodrich ensured Lowry Hill became a residential neighborhood with broad streetscapes and generous setbacks devoid of small or inexpensive houses. By the turn of the 19th century, the street was home to many prominent Minneapolis businessmen such as the original owner of the home, Newton Pierson, and subsequent owner Theodore Wold, a prominent Minneapolis’ banking executive and community builder. The proverbial “self-made man,” Theodore Wold advanced from a ninety-six hour a week job driving a delivery wagon to the first Governor of the Ninth Federal Reserve Bank in Minneapolis. His son, Ernest Groves Wold, served as a reconnaissance pilot in France’s First Aero Squadron, the Lafayette Escadrille, during World War I. Wold’s exceptional coolness and accuracy of fire enabled him to crisscross enemy lines four times on August 1, 1918, photographing German positions and forcing down at least two of five attacking German aircraft. After machine gun bullets riddled his arms and killed his observer-photographer, Wold piloted his disabled plane back to base, flying with his feet and knees. He died in the crash landing, but his photographs safely reached French forces. Five years later when the primitive “Speedway Airport” in south Minneapolis was about to be expanded and used for commercial and passenger traffic, it was decided that the new name for the facility should be Wold-Chamberlain Twin City Airport in honor of two war heroes, Ernest Groves Wold and Cyrus Foss Chamberlain.
2006, Bob Glancy
“City of Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Commission Registration Form: Pierson-Wold House,” 2008.