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Historic Fort Douglas at the University of Utah
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Virtual Tour - Neighborhood #9

Neighborhood #9 on site map
Neighborhood #9

Building 655:  This white, stuccoed adobe building with frame addition, built in 1863, is the oldest building at Fort Douglas and the only surviving building from the “Establishment” period.  It was built to serve as the residence for the Post Commander.  However, it did not serve in this capacity for long.  From about 1864 to 1876, the Post Quartermaster lived here.  From about 1876 to 1930, this building served as Non-Commissioned Officer’s Quarters.  From 1930 to 1960 the post electrician, who was a civilian, lived here.  In 1960, Building 655 again came to house non-commissioned officers.  In 1980, it became office space.  The 1991 transfer agreement stipulated that it be used as part of the Fort Douglas Military Museum.  Great care was taken with the design of the Heritage Center to allow Building 655 to remain in its original context on Connor Road, to maintain its historic prominence, and allow it to be a focal point in this neighborhood.

Buildings 656 & 657:  These two-story Colonial Revival style duplexes were built in 1916 to house non-commissioned officers and their families.  Although it is unknown exactly how the front porch and upper balcony originally appeared, maintenance records from the 1930s indicate that the porch was enclosed with wood banisters and screens.  The screens and banisters were replaced with wrought iron in the 1950s.  The one-story addition in the rear of each building was constructed in 1939 and included a kitchen, small half-bath, and utility area for each unit.  At this time the original kitchen became the dining room.  These duplexes were the only two wood-frame and stucco dwellings built at Fort Douglas. 

Buildings 658, 660, 664-666:  Buildings 658, 660, 664, and 665 were built in 1930, Building 666 in 1933, as residences for the senior non-commissioned officers assigned to the 38th Infantry and their families.  These duplexes were part of a nationwide Army building program initiated in 1927 to upgrade the living conditions of officers, non-commissioned officers, and enlisted men.  The building program was implemented in the 1930s using funds from the Army, the Works Progress Administration, and the Public Works Administration.  Designed by the Quartermaster General’s Office in Washington, D.C., the standard plans could be modified depending on regional style.  At Fort Douglas, the Colonial Revival style was chosen.  In 1961, a brick addition was constructed in the rear and the kitchen was moved there.  In 1973, a small entry and half-bath were added. 

Building 659:  The 1901 designation of Fort Douglas as Regimental Headquarters resulted in the construction of many new buildings in order to accommodate the Post’s population growth.  Built in 1917, this building was constructed to serve as housing for non-commissioned officers and their families.

Building 650:650:  This one-story stone building was built in 1936 for use as the bathhouse for the swimming pool (651), which was constructed in 1935.  The swimming pool measured 150 feet by 64 feet.  Building 650 was constructed by the United States Army in cooperation with the Works Progress Administration.  In 2001, the bathhouse was renovated and the swimming pool was filled in.  This decision was made because no funding was available for needed repairs and to serve the needs of the Outdoor Recreation Program, the current occupant of the bathhouse, and their clients.  The area south of the bathhouse was the ideal spot to provide sports courts for students.  It should be noted that the solution is reversible.  In other words, the swimming pool could be recovered in the future.

Buildings 661-663:  These three single family residences were constructed in 1891 for the Quartermaster Sergeant (661), Ordnance Sergeant (662), Commissary Sergeant (663), and their families during a time when the Army was reducing the number of posts across the country and consolidating the troops at larger posts.  In an effort to attract better-qualified men and encourage re-enlistment, the Army began building separate residences for non-commissioned officers and their families.  Exterior treatment originally included solid brackets around the porch and bay window; novelty siding on the ground level; fish scale shingles on the second story; simulated half-timbering in the front gable; simple roof cresting; and a flower finial on the roof.  The lean-to addition in the back of each building was added circa 1910.  
 The wooden front porch bases were replaced with concrete by WPA workers in the 1930s.  In the 1950s, the turned wood posts that originally supported the porches were replaced with wrought iron and the distinctive Queen Anne details and patterned wood siding were covered in asbestos siding.  These buildings are now covered with vinyl siding.
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