Filed Under Residences

Jones-Nenzel House (site)

From the early 1920s to the early 1930s, University of Nevada Professor of Geology J. Claude Jones and his family lived in the house that once stood at 825 N. Lake Street. Jones later served as Acting Dean of Men on the university campus. In 1916, Jones had earned great acclaim for helping to determine the age of ancient Lake Lahontan. He died after an illness in 1932 at the age of 54.

The house itself dated back to at least 1910, and was a rare example of the Free Classic style of Queen Anne architecture in Reno. The foundation was constructed of local stone, and the porch was supported by Tuscan columns. The wood front door was likely original, featuring an upper window and lower panel carved with a Classically-derived wreath relief.

By 1933, mining engineer Rudolph Nenzel resided here with his family. A native of Nenzel, Nebraska, a town named for his pioneering grandfather, "Rudie" Nenzel had moved to Reno from Lovelock, where he had been very active in the Rochester, Seven Troughs, and Scotia mining camps. Members of the Nenzel family lived here through 1981.

A member by marriage of the Nenzel family was Hewitt (known as Hugh) Kees, the station master of KOH radio station. He married Marge Nenzel, and they lived in the house for several decades. Her parents moved to Hawthorne, Nevada in the 1950s.

Most recently, the house was a rental. It was acquired in late 1994 by Clark Kayler, a university-area landlord, from Felicia Owens, the ex-wife of Pastor Robert Owens. The couple had moved into the house in 1982 and established the University Family Fellowship in 1983, holding services in their backyard on Lake Street. The house was demolished by the University of Nevada, Reno to make way for a seven-story parking garage.

Images

Jones-Nenzel House, 2016
Jones-Nenzel House, 2016 A view from the north side reveals the house's local stone foundation and porch supported by Tuscan columns with a railing featuring classical balusters. Creator: Emily Rogers Date: 2016
Free Classic Queen Anne
Free Classic Queen Anne A close-up of the house's second floor reveals some of the features that make it so rare and significant: its side-gabled roof with projecting cross gables and its ornate decorative glass windows. Creator: Emily Rogers Date: 2016
J. Claude Jones
J. Claude Jones Professor Claude Jones doing fieldwork Source: Special Collections, University of Nevada, Reno Libraries
Belle and Dorothy Jones
Belle and Dorothy Jones Mrs. Claude Jones and her daughter Dorothy in the back yard. Source: Special Collections, University of Nevada, Reno Libraries Date: ca. 1926
825 N. Lake Street
825 N. Lake Street A view showing the south side of the house. Source: Resource Assessment, City of Reno Historical Resources Commission Creator: ZoAnn Campana Date: March 12, 2016
Front detail
Front detail A close-up view of the front steps and the porch railing. Source: Resource Assessment, City of Reno Historical Resources Commission Creator: ZoAnn Campana Date: March 12, 2016

Location

825 N. Lake Street, Reno, NV

Metadata

The Reno Historical Team, “Jones-Nenzel House (site),” Reno Historical, accessed June 20, 2024, https://renohistorical.org/items/show/147.