Photos: Tour architect S.R. DeBoer's historic property -- yours for just $1.5 million!

Categories: Photos

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Big photos below.
Landscape architect Saco Rienk DeBoer was the first man to bring zoning to the city of Denver, and he constructed his own studio property so everything would drain into the city ditch. Today, that space, located at 515 East Iliff Avenue, went on sale for $1.5 million, a steep price that could buy you a property designed by the same man credited for the Denver Botanic Gardens, Red Rocks Amphitheatre and the Cheesman Park esplanade. Continue reading for more photos of the historic site.

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Getting to this stage was not without controversy, however. After DeBoer's death in 1974, his heirs targeted the property with plans to tear it down. But because its neighbors -- and the general public -- were so enamored with it, that plan went over poorly. The community rallied and saved DeBoer's property by guaranteeing it historic landmark status.Today, regulations prevent significant changes in its future.

Down in the basement, Essence Homes project coordinator Kimberly Blad explains, "You can tell the house is old, because no longer in construction do they build wood angled this way. It costs way too much. The boards are crisscrossed for the support of the house."

Today, most elements of the household remain original -- "even the hand-painted ceiling," painted by John Edward Thompson, Blad says. "The ceiling is worth more than the building."

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Continue for more photos.



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9 comments
cornellram53
cornellram53

Why can't this guy take pictures that aren't at a 45 degree angle? 

liz477
liz477

I am S.R.DeBoer's granddaughter. My married name is Elizabeth (Wright) Potts. My mother's name was Elizabeth (DeBoer) Wright . My family lived on that property until the last of it was sold in 2011. I took care of my grandfather on several occasions as I grew up, and after I was married. My grandmother (S.R. DeBoer's wife) developed dementia and was not safe cooking anymore. After  high school every night, I cooked dinner with her and for my grandfather. After I was married, he stayed with us while he was recovering from surgery.

 

We were a close family. My mother lived on that property, almost her entire life. My grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. S.R.DeBoer, never lived in 515 or 505 or 575 East Iliff Avenue. The building you are celebrating is not, and never has been, his home. The small addition on the west side of my grandfather's office was built as a place for me, my parents and my two brothers and sister to live. We lived there until I was 12 years old. We then moved to 575 East Iliff Avenue (a house my father, Wistar Wright, built), one lot to the east of my grandfather's office at 515 East Iliff.

 

The pictures of the remodeled 515 East Iliff Avenue building seem to show extreme interior changes. I don''t recognize the inside anymore. My two brothers and I are the immediate family  members who lived, worked, and cared for our parents and grandparents, and that property, until we were forced to sell it to pay for our mother's'  late life care, and the huge legal fees caused by the actions of the very people who are now--again--inflicting their fantasized version of our family history on an unsuspecting public. If you want to know the real, accurate history of our family and our property--ask one of us. We know who our grandfather was, what he did, and where he lived. We know it better than anyone else.

 

Channel 9 and Westword have been duped into providing free advertising for the company that is selling the property, along with a falsified version of its history. I guess if you don't know the history, you just make it up. It's lazy--and worse, unethical--to allow misguided wannabes to continue to ladle out their misinformation. It saddens me to see a fantasy be treated as actual history, when the real history can be readily obtained by anyone who desires to take the time. 

 

Throughout the turmoil of the last few years, with the constant attacks by nasty self-serving neighbors and their misguided followers, my family took the high road. I am very proud of them, and as a family we have nothing to be ashamed of. I can't say the same for some of the neighbors,  and some public officials, who were involved variously in the hostile landmarking with made-up information, personal verbal and physical assaults towards us, and the seeming unwillingness to communicate with S.R. DeBoer's real family in any rational way. I guess it is true, if you don't know the history, make it up and print the legend. It's too bad. I feel sorry for people who have to live vicariously through others' history and accomplishments. We are moving on with our lives, and bumps in the road, such as the current kerfuffle over my grandfather's office will not weaken our resolve to hold our heads up high. We know the truth and we know the history, and our love and regard for each other is unbreakable, no matter how much others try to defame and demean us.  

 

MeowMix
MeowMix

Couple of things (OK, more than a couple): 1.) Hey @Leigh Lafon (and really, everyone in the general area): You should consider changing political affiliation. The Republican Party is where all the liars reside. 2.) No family members were present. Period. I am a family member and I know this for a fact. No family of my great grandfather would ever stand with blatant and shameless liars, as reside in that neighborhood.3.) I am wondering if the 2 personal injury lawyers (who physically threatened my mother -S.R. DeBoer's granddaughter- during the hostile attempt to landmark) were present? I think those restraining orders are still valid, actually. I wonder if they're still able to practice law after having shamed the profession? Hmmm. 4.) Yes, Claudia, it HAS been a long road. A road that actually began with nobody uttering a word to the legitimate family before filing a landmark application.5.) Christina LaFon IS the World's best actress-as would be expected, because so is her mother. 6.) Trying to get people to accurately tell the TRUE story of that property has been like shouting into a black hole. It's clear that nobody wants the real story. 7.) S.R. DeBoer died in 1974 but my grandmother (his daughter) didn't die until 2005. It was then that the neighbors chose to assume that this property was headed for demolition. Funny thing, they never asked anybody anything. Had they asked, they would've found out that the OFFICE (which is the building featured above and is NEVER HIS HOME) was never targeted for such a thing. 8.) The realtor makes it seem as though that staircase is original. It's not. The only thing original in that building: painted beams and bricks. 9.) You people need to get lives. Stop riding on the coat tails of a man you never met. 10.) As his legitimate family, we get to own his history. Not you. It belongs to us. You will never take that away from us, no matter how hard you and your concocted stories try. 11.) If you mean by "unique community" that no other pathological liars exist in Denver, in any other neighborhood, then yes, you truly have a unique community.

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

Thanks for the tour of that beautiful structure . I lived as a young child in a house caddy corner' through the alley of the Molly Brown house , between 13th & 14th on Pearl street . It was built at the same time as the late Mrs . Brown's.

I loved and was scared to death of the place at the same time . The place is haunted . In fact , the house was converted into apartments and in 1991 , I moved into one of the units w/ my new bride.

Within a week , the spirit began making it's presence known ...

Anyway , you failed to mention the square footage and year it was built ...

joshmishell
joshmishell

@DenverWestword I'll just have to be content living across the street from his park.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

 @liz477 Very interesting post, Liz. We're going to make it an upcoming Comment of the Day. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

MeowMix
MeowMix

 @michael.roberts  @liz477  Excellent choice. The legitimate family (not the people the neighbors dug up to somehow stick it to us-"family" we've never met, btw and we were all in the same spot in South Denver for 90 years) deserves it, finally. I hope people can see fit to show some respect for my mother and family, once and for all.

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