Quirk House


The Quirk mansion is a blend of early Italianate, Georgian and Colonial Revival styles. This is one of the larger residences of early business founders and former city dignitaries along the “gold coast” of the community. Initially the residence of Delos Showerman, haberdasher, it was built in a cubic Italianate style with slate hip roof terminating in either a long—gone belvedere or Victorian cresting around its flat top. In succession it was the residence of Prof. Griffith of the Normal School; Colonel George W. Lee, Civil War officer and military construction supervisor in the building of Harper Hospital in Detroit; the Deubel brothers, founders of several flour mills along the river; and, finally, Daniel L. Quirk, Jr., son of the prominent co—founder of several significant businesses in the community. When Quirk, Jr. bought the house in 1908, he had Donaldson and Meier, architects of Detroit, design substantial additions to it in the Georgian Revival style, a popular preference of the rich and famous at the turn of the century. One of his four children born in the house was Nancy Quirk Williams, wife of former Governor G. Mennen Williams. In 1927, a substantial north wing, designed by Lancelot Sukert, architect of Detroit, was added to house Quirk’s extensive theatre arts and circus library. In 1936, the family donated the flood plain portion of their property to the city as an addition to Riverside Park. Three years after the death of Daniel L. Quirk, Jr. in 1955, the city bought the property and converted it for use as a municipal court. The building was later sold to, and is still occupied by, a local law firm. (courtesy of the Ypsilanti Heritage Foundation)

8/15/95 "New Life For Quirk House" "Land Purchase Points To Civic Center Site" Julia Quirk Looking North on Huron St. Backyard House Calendar Rendering Interior 5/16/94

This article is a part of the Preservation Project.
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Images and some text courtesy of the Ypsilanti Historical Society