Conrad-Caldwell House

Historical Marker #2426 in Louisville recognizes the Conrad-Caldwell House, a grand example of late Victorian architecture.

The home is located in historic St. James Court which is distinguished by the diversity of the individual mansions. As elsewhere in Old Louisville, the homes built just after the Exposition are more picturesque than many of those built earlier or later.

The Conrad-Caldwell house is the residential masterpiece of the long-lived Louisville architectural firm of C. J. Clarke & Arthur Loomis. Theophilus Conrad, tannery owner, built this home in the Richardsonian Romanesque style between 1893 and 1895. After Conrad’s death in 1905, the house was sold to William Caldwell, maker of wooden and steel tanks. In 1947, it was acquired by the Presbyterian Church and became a home for elderly women. The house was purchased by the St. James Court Association in 1987 and has operated as a house museum ever since.

The interior features lavish woodwork with intricate details such as coffered wainscoting. Most of the original millwork and hand-carved wood remains intact. The house also features many innovations of its day, including interior plumbing and electric lighting. It has been restored to the Edwardian Era (1900-1910), with a collection of period items including many original pieces which reflect the lives of two successful industrialists, and their families, at the start of the twentieth century.

Now a house museum, with family artifacts and period antiques on display, it provides a rare glimpse of the lives of upper-class Louisville families in that era.