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812 Grand Avenue

Walter E. Ware designed this home for Constantine Peter and Annie Arnold. This building is a significant example of the work of architect Walter Ware, as well as for its association with three prominent Laramie families, including current owners Even and Anne Brande. Ware also designed the Ivinson Mansion and Old Main on the University of Wyoming campus.

Built in 1889, this home is an Eastlake style with hints of Victorian. The two-story façade is asymmetrical, rests on a low foundation and is topped by a steeply pitched hipped roof covered with wood shingles, with two finials at the peak. Intersecting gables project from the hipped roof on the north, east, and west elevations. The house consists of an original section and two large additions to the rear. Most of the house is clade in clapboard siding, which is enlivened with Eastlake-style bands of trim between the first and second stories.

Known as the Arnold Residence, Constantine P. Arnold “C.P.” was a highly respected Laramie attorney and leader in the community. C.P. and his wife Annie were socialites and held numerous parties at their home on 812 Grand Ave. Arnold’s sons, Carl F. and Thurman W., followed their father into law and also had successful careers. In the 1980s and 1990s, Pete and Lynne Simpson owned the house. Pete Simpson, a distinguished UW political science professor, was also a state legislator and ran for governor in 1986. The Simpsons sold the Arnold Residence in 1990 to current owners Even and Anne Brande. They live in the home with their three children.

This house is truly historic and symbolic and reminiscent of Laramie’s past and western affluent society.

Even and Anne Brande

Walter E. Ware designed the Arnold Residence for Constantine Peter and Annie Arnold. This building is a significant example of the work of architect Walter Ware, as well as for its association with three prominent Laramie families, including current owners Even and Anne Brande. Ware also designed the Ivinson Mansion and Old Main on the University of Wyoming campus.

812-grand-280Constantine “C.P.” was a highly respected Laramie attorney and leader in the community. Both C.P. and Annie Brockway grew up in Laramie. Annie was the daughter of John Goss Brockway who arrived in Laramie on the first train on May 10, 1868. Her mother taught school in Laramie. C.P. was the son of the Reverend and Mrs. Franklin Luther Arnold. Rev. Arnold helped establish the Presbyterian church in Laramie. C.P. and his wife Annie were socialites and held numerous parties at their home on 812 Grand Ave. as well as the well-attended “winter party,” which was held by the Arnolds each year on their ranch on the outskirts of town.

Arnold’s sons, Carl F. and Thurman W., followed their father into law and also had successful careers. Carl served as dean of the University of Wyoming Law School in the years prior to his death in 1941. Thurman was mayor of Laramie from 1923-1924, and practiced law in Laramie until 1927, when he accepted the position of Dean of Law at West Virginia University. He also served as Assistant Attorney General of the United States from 1938 to 1943, under President Franklin Roosevelt’s administration. Both sons were born in the upstairs front bedroom of the home.

In the 1980s and 1990s, Pete and Lynne Simpson owned the house. Pete Simpson, a distinguished UW political science professor, was also a state legislator and ran for governor in 1986. His brother Alan was a state legislator before serving three terms as U.S. senator. Their father, Milward Simpson, served as governor of Wyoming from 1955 to 1959, and later served in the U.S. Senate. The Simpsons sold the Arnold Residence in 1990 to current owners Even and Anne Brande. They live in the home with their three children. The Brandes also own a historic downtown building on 3rd Street and Ivinson Avenue where they operate two businesses, Handel Information Technologies and Ludwig Photography. Interestingly, Anne Brande is the great-granddaughter of Henning Svenson and continues the long time family tradition of photography in Laramie that Henning started more than a century ago. Henning arrived in Laramie in 1905. He built the building on 3rd and Ivinson in 1925 for his photography studio. Over his career he produced nearly 125,000 photos of Laramie and its residents. Ironically for the Brandes, Henning was also friends with and collaborated with C.P. Arnold. C.P. was a poet and featured his original poems in booklets and cards with natural history photos taken by Henning. Many of Henning’s photos have been preserved for the public in the Ludwig-Svenson Studio Collection of the University of Wyoming’s American Heritage Center.

The Brande’s home, built in 1889, is an Eastlake style with hints of Victorian, a truly historic house, symbolic and reminiscent of Laramie’s past and western affluent society. The two-story house is asymmetrical, rests on a low foundation and is topped by a steeply pitched hipped roof covered with wood shingles, with two finials at the peak. Intersecting gables project from the hipped roof on the north, east, and west elevations. The house consists of an original section and two large additions to the rear. Most of the house is clade in clapboard siding, which is enlivened with Eastlake-style bands of trim between the first and second stories. The gable ends are finished with pebble-dash stucco and applied decorative half timbering interspersed with a decorative exterior features. The east bay of the south façade projects and terminates in a front-facing gable. A one-story entry porch dominates the west bay with its own-hipped roof capped with wrought-iron cresting and an intersecting gable supported by brackets. The gable end is decorated with the repetitive, machine-cut, circular features that are especially characteristic of the Eastlake style. The porch is supported by slender posts and has a spindlework valance. The knee wall of the porch contains cutouts that mimic the circular decorations found on the gable end. The east and west elevations are nearly identical except for the brick exterior chimney on the west elevation. A projecting bay terminating in a gable that intersects the main roof dominates each. Both elevations have cutaway corner windows on the first story beneath the gable ends, with the corners supported by scrolled brackets with pendills. Most of windows are original, which are of Queen-Anne style with exterior storm windows.

The lot also includes a mother-in-law house. This one-story, callboard-sided, Hip roofed cottage is located southwest of the main house. The roof is sheathed in wood shingles and a red brick chimney rises from the west slope. The house is painted to match the main house, with a green and red cornice, and window sash painted red with white trim. The north façade consists of three bays, with the doorway in the central bay and windows in the east and west bays. Windows are double-hung replacement wood sash with plain, wooden moldings.

This historic home is filled with oral tradition and great irony among the prominent Laramie families that lived there, with the Brandes continuing this tradition today.