Way We Were: The Larremores and 733 Woodside Avenue
June 15, 2018
The house at 733 Woodside Ave. stands out from its neighbors. While its floor plan is, at its simplest, a T/L cottage (named for its shape, reminiscent of a T and an L), it is larger than many other historic residential structures built in Park City around the same time. Additionally, the gabled roof and decorative elements on the porch frieze and brackets are representative of Utah's Victorian-style architecture, which was not particularly common in Park City.
The property was purchased by Maggie McDonald in 1904 and the house was built shortly after. At that time, two styles of Victorian architecture were popular: Queen Anne and Eastlake. Eastlake houses were commonly constructed from wood, while Queen Annes were a variety of building materials. 733 Woodside has elements usually seen in Eastlake architecture in Salt Lake City and parts of rural Utah.
Census records show that Maggie, who had relatives in Park City, lived in Salt Lake City with her husband. She sold the house in 1919 to Frank E. Knotts, manager of the Orpheum theatre. Knott rented the house to miner Louis Hartwell and his daughters.
After a succession of other owners, Ted and Wilma Larremore bought the house in 1951. The mining industry had long been in decline by the 1950s and Park City's population had shrunk to around 1100. Ted, who was raised in Wyoming, had come to Park City in the late 1940s to visit his sister and undergo an operation at the Miner's Hospital.
He loved Park City from the moment he arrived. "When I first turned that corner and first [saw] Main Street I thought, my god, it's like goin' back a hundred years," Ted said in an oral history interview with the Park City Museum in May 2000. He got a job in the mines, met Wilma, and settled down. The couple bought 733 Woodside about two years after their marriage.
"People got by," Ted reminisced. "We struggled. … We bought the house because [Wilma] liked the house, and I liked it.
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"We had a hell of a time paying for it and we paid $35 a month for it for four years. We gave $1,800 for this corner when we bought it and that was a lot of money. We had a lot of people stop by and say, 'You're crazy; this town will never amount to anything,' and they [were] moving out and they said, 'You're crazy to stay here.'"
But stay the Larremores did. Although they briefly moved to Nebraska in the 1960s, Ted and Wilma had permanently returned to Park City, and 733 Woodside, by 1976.
This and other houses on middle Woodside and Park Avenues will be featured on this year's Historic Home Tour, hosted by the Park City Museum. Join us for this one-day only special event on June 23, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.. Catch a glimpse into Park City's past and see how today's residents make creative use of these historic structures. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit our website at http://www.parkcityhistory.org.