224 1st Street SW – Henry and Juliana Albright House

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The Albright House (224 1st St. SW)

This two-story house sits at the southeast corner of 1st Street and 3rd Avenue SW, between two NRHP-listed historic districts: The Cornell College District and The Commercial District.

This house is banked into the sideslope of a distinctive landform, known as a paha, which overlooks the broad valley of the Cedar River to the south and Abbe Creek to the northwest. Nearby to the west is Cornell College which was built on the highest elevation of this paha, with the historic commercial area of Mount Vernon built on the spine of the paha as it extends to the east of this house.

Built in 1853 by the town’s earliest masons and brickmakers, the Albright brothers, the exterior walls are made with bricks manufactured at their brick yard with the foundation of locally quarried limestone.

Several notable additions were made to east and south (rear) sides of the house, with a 1927 addition consisting of a 1.5-story side-gabled, brick-veneered wing set back from the main façade and attached to the east gable end of the original house. It was also built of soft reddish-orange bricks that closely match those of the original house. As a result, the 1927 addition complements rather than detracts from the original style of the house.