Q&A: Historic Architecture in Snowflake

james madison flake home in snowlfake
James Madison Flake Home | Snowflake Heritage Foundation

Our July issue, which focuses on Arizona architecture, includes several historic structures from around the state. Historic buildings can be found in many places around Arizona, and one of those is the small town of Snowflake. We talked with the president of the Snowflake Heritage Foundation, Sarah Brimhall, to learn more about the history of some iconic buildings in the town.

Which buildings in Snowflake are prominent in terms of historic architecture?
The James Madison Flake Home (above) was built in 1895.  It was designed by an English architect, and it is three stories tall and approximately 6,000 square feet.
The Johnny Freeman Home (below) is part of the Gothic Revival on Main Street. It was built in 1889. It's a great house; it was restored and redone completely on the outside in 1998. 

How is the upkeep and preservation of these buildings funded?
Grant money and fundraising was used to restore the Freeman house. It has a Main Street USA grant. Also, a lot of donated labor hours were utilized. The James Madison Flake House has a trust and the funds come mainly from the family.

Why do you think these buildings have stood the test of time?
After going to a lot of different places, it’s interesting to think our little Snowflake has as much restored and as much to see. It’s pretty impressive after all is said and done.  People from all over the world have come here. There’s just something about the history and the amazing and hard lives these people lived. In the Valley, when it’s hot, just come up to Snowflake. Check out the whole area. There’s plenty of stuff up here to see. It’s like a Gilmore Girls situation, just a small town that you can walk around and feel safe.

john freeman homeThe Snowflake/Taylor Chamber of Commerce can help visitors arrange a tour of the historic homes. Tours are free, but donations are encouraged. 

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