Eckhardt House - 2425 9th Avenue

 Print Listing Historical Name - Eckhardt House
Style - Ranch Type
Built Year - 1952-1953
State ID - 5WL4949

Description - The Ranch style house at 2425 9th Avenue measures 36 feet (across) by 24 feet (deep), and it is set back approximately 52 feet from the curb at 9th Avenue to the east. The single-story house is supported by a low painted grey concrete foundation. The foundation walls extend to approximately 2 feet above the grade, and are penetrated by single-light basement windows. The house is of wood frame construction, and its exterior walls are clad with white or pale grey asphalt or asbestos shingle siding. The roof is a moderately-pitched side-gable, covered with grey asphalt shingles. The eaves are boxed with painted white wood trim. A single-light fixed-pane picture window, flanked on either side by a narrow 1/1 double-hung sash window, penetrates the façade wall on the east elevation. A single 1/1 double-hung sash window overlooks the front porch near the south end of the east elevation. Three 2/2 double-hung sash windows penetrate the west (rear) elevation. Two 2/2 double-hung sash window penetrate the south (side) elevation. Windows on the north (side) elevation. Windows on the north (side) elevation include a single 1/1 double-hung sash window, and a 1x1 horizontal slider in a metal frame. All of the home's double-hung windows feature painted white wood frames and surrounds. A stained natural brown solid wood front door enters the house on the façade. This door features three stepped upper sash lights, is covered by a painted white wood storm door, and enters the house from an 18' by 7' L-shaped front porch. The porch is approached by three concrete steps, is faced with wire-cut red brick, and features a painted white wood railing, wood post supports, and a shed roof with a small intersecting gable over the entry steps.

Historical Background - This house was built in 1952-1953 by Benjamin A. and Dorothy L. (Mitchell) Eckhardt, and it has served continuously as the Eckhardt family home from that time to the present (2005). Ben Eckhardt had been born in Greeley on August 11, 1921, the son of George and Katherine Eckhardt. At the time of his birth, the family lived at 3rd Avenue and 10th Street, but later moved to 1324 4th Avenue where Ben spent most of his formative years. George and Katherine Eckhardt were members of the region's Germans from Russia population, both having immigrated to America with their respective families in the early 1900s. In 1937, George Eckhardt established "George's Repair Shop" located in the 800 block of 7th Street. This business offered a wide variety of services, included locksmithing, safe work, bicycle repair, and the servicing of lawn mowers and other small engines. Mr. Eckhardt began working in the repair shop during his sophomore year in high school, and in time he took over the business as his father moved into retirement. George's Repair Ship is till a viable business in Greeley. Presently operated by Ben's son, Don Eckhardt, it now focuses primarily on the repair and sale of bicycles. George's Repair Ship is featured in the "Wheelmen of Greeley" exhibit at the Greeley History Museum. It is reportedly the city's oldest bicycle repair shop. Ben Eckhardt and Dorothy Mitchell were united in marriage in October 1941. Dorothy had grown up on a farm near Evans. Following their marriage, Ben entered into the armed forces, serving in the Pacific Theater during World War II. Dorothy, meanwhile, worked for the Great Western Sugar Company during the war years, while also caring for the couple's first child, Benjamin Jr., who was born in July 1942. Three more children were born following the war's end - Randy in 1949, Don in 1953, and a daughter, Lonalee, in 1956. The Eckhardts purchased this property in January 1949, initially living in a small house located at the rear of the lot. They then built this house and a detached garage in 1952-1953, basing its design on plans from Popular Mechanics magazine. An excellent woodworker, Mr. Eckhardt also designed and built all of the home's interior cabinetry. Mr. Eckhardt also taught workworking on a volunteer basis in Greeley High School shop classes for many years. Now retired, Mr. and Mrs. Eckhardt continue to reside in their 9th Avenue home as of November 2005.