Points of Interest in Mendocino County

National Register #90001363: Arena Cove Wharfmaster's House 13 November 2005
(Click Photo to Zoom)
Wharfmaster's House
430 North Franklin Street
Point Arena
Built c1875

This Eastlake cottage was built for the wharfmaster whose work was central to the economy of Point Arena from the 1860s to the 1920s. Because the cottage is located on a rise above the cove, the wharfmaster could literally oversee port activities while at home. The house was probably prefabricated in San Francisco in the mid-1870s and shipped to Point Arena as a kit.

The Wharfmaster's House is the most elaborately decorated residence in Point Arena. Nothing else matches it for ornamentation: turned posts, scroll brackets, elaborate window moldings, decorative bargeboards, a dentil course. These Eastlake elements typified fancy houses built during the era in larger and less remote California cities but were unusual in Point Arena where residents were generally contented with functionality.

Source: Adapted from the NRHP nomination for Arena Cove Historic District submitted in 1990.

The Wharfmaster's House contributes to the Arena Cove Historic District.

When we photographed the building, it was part of a hotel complex.

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