Filed Under Residences

Carr Residence and Office

Longtime home to the Carr family and George A. Carr's dental practice

In the early 1920s, this part of South Virginia Street was starting to fill in with comfortable wood frame houses. The subdivision, known as Crampton's Addition, had been platted out in 1906, and ran from Virginia Street to Plumas Street. Virginia Street was not yet a commercial thoroughfare, although the Commercial Soap Factory was located one block to the west, and the Osen Motor Sales Company moved into a beautiful new building across the street in 1923. This bungalow was built around 1922 for the Sharpe family, who offered it for sale in 1924 through an ad reading, "Modern five room furnished full basement and garage. Good location, $6500."

The house was purchased by George A. and Grace Carr, who had been living in Reno for a few years, but were both from North Carolina. The story of how they came to Reno in the first place is deeply intertwined with the city's role as an early twentieth century divorce colony. A practicing dentist in Durham, North Carolina, George had traveled to Reno in 1916 to obtain a divorce from his second wife, a process that at that time took six months. While waiting out the residency period in Reno, he opened a dental practice downtown, then seems to have returned to Durham. In 1918, he was back in Reno for another divorce, from his third wife. At the same time, Grace Shields, also of North Carolina, was in Reno to secure her own divorce, and within a few months, she and George A. Carr were married.

The Carrs decided at some point to remain in Reno, and Dr. Carr continued to practice dentistry downtown after moving his family into this house. In 1938, he hired the local architectural firm of Frederic DeLongchamps and George O’Brien to design an addition to the front of the house to use as his dentistry office, and practiced here for the next 15 years. The house was later occupied by a series of business tenants. In 2011, it became the new home of the restaurant Süp.

The Cochran irrigation ditch, constructed in the 1860s, runs just to the north of the house, winding its way for 32 miles from the Truckee River to Virginia Lake and onward to Steamboat Creek. Eight feet wide in parts, the ditch was a source of both recreation and danger. Neighborhood children fished for crawdads in it, and sometimes fell in. The ditch finally was channeled into an underground culvert through most of the downtown area in 1948.

Images

Süp Restaurant in 2022
Süp Restaurant in 2022 The historic Carr Residence and Office now serves as the home of Süp Restaurant. The addition that served as Dr. Carr's dentistry office, on the left, is now a dining room. Creator: Alicia Barber Date: 2022
George A. Carr's Reno divorce
George A. Carr's Reno divorce A newspaper article appearing in the Durham [N.C.] Herald-Sun on February 24, 1917, reports that George A. Carr had successfully secured his divorce in Reno and would soon be back in Durham to resume his dentistry practice. Source: Durham [N.C.] Herald-Sun Date: February 24, 1917
1938 Architectural Elevation
1938 Architectural Elevation The architectural drawings for the addition, created in 1938 by the firm of DeLongchamps and O'Brien, pay particular attention to matching the ceiling height and roof pitch of the existing house. Source: Special Collections, University of Nevada, Reno Libraries Creator: DeLongchamps & O'Brien Architects Date: 1938
1938 Architectural floor plan
1938 Architectural floor plan The floor plan for the new addition designed by DeLongchamps and O'Brien depicts the new "operating room" and "laboratory" for Dr. Carr's new dentist's office, complete with a linoleum floor and water supply for the "cuspidor." Source: Special Collections, University of Nevada, Reno Libraries Creator: DeLongchamps & O'Brien Architects Date: 1938
1949 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map
1949 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map The 1949 Sanborn Fire Insurance map of the block shows the Carr House in yellow (signifying wood frame) on the right, just below the Cochran Irrigation Ditch that ran to its north. Depicted in pink, for brick, are a neon sign factory and commercial buildings on Virginia Street and St. Lawrence Avenue. Source: U.S. Library of Congress Creator: Sanborn Fire Insurance Company Date: 1949
The house in 2016
The house in 2016 The historic house became the new home of the locally-owned restaurant Süp in 2011. Creator: Alicia Barber Date: 2016

Location

669 S. Virginia Street, Reno, Nevada

Metadata

Alicia Barber, “Carr Residence and Office,” Reno Historical, accessed July 14, 2024, http://renohistorical.org/items/show/247.