Elisha and Joseph Poad House

Helena Historic District

Elisha Poad arrived in Helena in 1867 by way of mining camps in California and Nevada. Poad was a native of Cornwall, England, an area with over two thousand years of mining history. Attracted to Helena's placer mines, he was later associated with the New Water Company. Elisha's son Joseph also mined—both on his own account and in an industrial quartz mine. By 1890, Elisha and his wife Grace lived in the south half of this brick dwelling (built before 1888), while Joseph and his wife Mary Anne lived in the north half. The Poads soon expanded the duplex, where family members resided for more than sixty years. By 1892, the one-story building had grown to a substantial two-and-one-half stories, and a brick one-story addition stood where a log chicken coop had been. The ornately trimmed full-length front porch provides the vernacular building's primary embellishment. Turned columns with carved brackets support the porch cornice; turned spindles adorn the frieze; and turned balusters make up the wooden railing. Mass-produced, precut details placed such architectural ornamentation within reach of homeowners of all income levels. 



502-504 West Main Street, Helena, Montana ~ Private