Butte Historic District
When sisters Marie and Gunelia Brecke opened their first lodging house on North Main Street in 1886, they had to haul water from a nearby well. They soon moved their business to West Broadway and continued to own and manage rooming houses and hotels, even after Marie married—and later divorced—stationary engineer Victor Huffman. To meet the booming city’s demand for commercial and living spaces, the sisters hired Butte architect H. M. Patterson to design this building in 1901. The first floor, which featured floor-to-ceiling show windows, was rented to businesses. The upper floors served as offices and living quarters; tenants included both professionals and miners. Constructed for $40,000 (approximately $1.2 million in 2020 dollars), the “modern building” was “heated with steam and lighted with electricity.” Each room contained its own “ever-necessary wash stand” and clothes closet. To avoid the health problems commonly associated with tenement apartments, Patterson designed the Kenwood so that all rooms received natural light and had good ventilation. By 1909, the basement served as a National Guard armory. Marie lived in the Kenwood until her death in 1937.