National Register of Historic Places in Jackson County

National Register #81000489: Humboldt Pracht House in Ashland 21 September 2006
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National Register #81000489
Humboldt Pracht House
234 Vista Street
Built 1910

This house was designed by Frank Chamberlain Clark and built for Depot Hotel manager Humboldt Pracht. It is one of a half dozen outstanding, sizable, high-style bungalows in the community which were designed by local architects or builders directly influenced by the work of California architects Greene and Greene.

Humboldt Pracht arrived in Ashland in 1886 at the age of eleven. His father, Max Pracht, bought a large fruit tract which he named Peach Blow Paradise. The house of Pracht the elder still stands on Pracht Street in what became the fine Pracht Addition to Ashland.

Max Pracht served as the first government fishing commissioner in Alaska and was appointed collector of customs at Sitka under President Harrison. Other government posts included service in the Department of the Interior, the Health Department and on the Protective Tariff Board. His years of public work were interspersed with successful production of fruit in Ashland.

When Humboldt Pracht took over management of the Depot Hotel early in the 20th century, it was already a thriving operation. Completed in 1888, the large structure had forty sleeping rooms, a dining room and kitchen. Its location on Southern Pacific Railroad property guaranteed a steady supply of patrons as tired travellers poured off the cars.

For years the Depot Hotel ran under Humboldt Pracht's management and developed an excellent reputation on the West Coast. In the early 1930s the division head was moved from Ashland to Klamath Falls on the Cascade route, and the Depot Hotel, like other railroad related businesses in Ashland, declined.

Adapted from the NRHP nomination submitted in 1981.

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