George Schuster House and Carriage Shed

Also known as: Schuster Mansion Bed & Breakfast, The Red Castle, Redstone Apartments
3209 W. Wells St., Milwaukee, Wisconsin

German Renaissance Revival style mansion of distinctive red stone, red brick and Terra Cotta decor

Photos 

Overview Looking Southeast

Photo taken by J.R. Manning in November 2013

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Map 

Description 

George J. Schuster was a native of Ohio, born in 1850 to German immigrants. He came to Milwaukee at the age of 22 and became a partner in the firm of Schuster & Fitts in 1878. Schuster & Fitts were dealers in leaf tobacco. (Wisconsin has a rich heritage in the tobacco business, Edgerton used to be known as the "Tobacco Capital of the World.") Their customer base was located in Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota with over $100,000 in gross sales.

Schuster was married in 1878 and in 1891, built this massive red sandstone and red brick German Renaissance Revival style mansion. Schuster and his first wife moved in. After Schuster's death in 1924, his second wife sold the house and it was converted to apartments.

During World War II, many of the mansions in the neighborhood were torn down to make room for multi-family dwellings. Because the Redstone Apartments was already a multi-family structure, it was spared from the wrecking ball but over the years, many of the unique architectural details, such as leaded glass, were sold off.

The mansion came into private ownership in 2001 and the new owners began to revert the structure to a home. Today, still under ongoing restoration, it serves as an elegant bed & breakfast in the historic Concordia District.

National Register information 

Status
Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on January 16, 1986
Reference number
86000137
NR name
Schuster, George, House and Carriage Shed
Architectural styles
Victorian: Renaissance; Other architectural type; Chateauesque
Area of significance
Architecture
Level of significance
Local
Evaluation criteria
C - Design/Construction
Property type
Building
Historic functions
Single dwelling; Secondary structure
Current function
Multiple dwelling
Period of significance
1875-1899
Significant year
1891
Number of properties
Contributing buildings: 2

Tags 

19th Century (37,584)
Bed & Breakfast (9)
Brick (42,462)
Built 1891 (680)
Built during 1890s (7,593)
Crane & Barkhausen (8)
House (27,494)
Milwaukee County, Wisconsin (320)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin (163)
Private owner (54,396)
Renaissance (1,331)
Sandstone (4,861)
Slate (5,715)
Stone (26,161)
Terra cotta (3,922)
Victorian (19,697)
West Side Area MRA (27)
Wisconsin (2,585)

Update Log 

  • November 17, 2013: Updated by J.R. Manning: Updated Status, Added Description and Added Photos

Sources