317-323 South Third Street West

Missoula South Side Historic District

Missoula architect A. J. Gibson replicated this row house apartment building’s architectural details from an almost identical building he designed on South Second Street. Contractor David Andrews built both buildings in the early 1900s to meet Missoula’s growing demand for housing. The quiet south side especially grew in popularity after the arrival of the Milwaukee Railroad in 1908. Both buildings feature two projecting front bays, an appealing way to bring more light into the front rooms of the attached apartments. Ionic columns support the open front porches, which are topped by second-floor balconies, giving each apartments’ occupants access to outdoor space. The prominent cornices and the two circular windows, centered on the second-floor façades and encircled by keystone brickwork, add visual interest. Each apartment has its own door, an implicit answer to fears expressed by moralists that apartments encouraged promiscuity by allowing unmarried people to access one another’s residences through interior hallways. In 1920, tenants in this building included a carpenter and his family, a stenographer and her mother, a female bookkeeper, and a young civil engineer and his wife and child.

Map

317-323 South 3rd Street West, Missoula, MT ~ private