This unique home, built circa 1917, is one of the most beautiful examples of Asian-influenced Craftsman styling in all Reno. Craftsman was the dominant style for smaller houses built throughout the country during the period from about 1905 until the early 1930s. The style originated in Southern California and spread rapidly throughout the country, aided by popular magazines and pattern books. Often the Asian influence is visible only in the slightly upturned eaves but in the case of this house, there are also Asian design elements on the porch posts, and the front of the house features porthole windows on either side of the front door. The result is an elegant interpretation of the Craftsman style that must have been the envy of many Reno residents.
This was the home of the Humphrey family for nearly 90 years. Frank G. Humphrey was a native Nevadan, born on a Nye County ranch in 1872 and educated in the public school at the mining camp of Belmont. Humphrey himself engaged in mining, then operated a stage line between Sodaville and Tonopah. Coming to Northern Nevada, he married, and he and wife Marguerite welcomed daughters Adelaide in 1899 and Frances in 1904. Adelaide died in her twenties. Frances became an educator and spent her entire career in Reno public schools, first as a teacher and then a counselor, winning many accolades for her service.
Frances never married and even after her parents’ death, remained in her childhood home, which in her latter years, overlooked Interstate 80. It must have been a very sad thing for Frances to witness the destruction of her quiet, historic neighborhood. She passed away in 2001. The University acquired the property in 2008. Today it stands unoccupied, alone on that stretch of E. Eighth, surrounded by a tall iron fence