C. D. Arnold House
123 Bidwell Parkway, Buffalo, NY
||C. D. Arnold, official
photographer for the 1901 Pan-American Exposition
|Architect:||J. L. Silsbee|
||Contributing member in the Elmwood
Historic Preservation District (West)
Bidwell Parkway is an excellent example of Olmsted’s Buffalo parks and parkways system, cutting diagonally through the Elmwood Historic District (West) from Richmond Avenue and Colonial Circle through Elmwood Avenue near Potomac Avenue further on to Soldier’s Circle in the north-east.
The street and parkway itself were previously listed on the State and National Registers as a contributing element to the Delaware Park-Front Park system in the Olmsted Parks and Parkways Thematic Resources.
A divided roadway with grassy median, Bidwell Parkway is an excellent example of the type of road-as-park that Olmsted envisioned; linking pre- existing settlement at Black Rock and Cold Spring with ribbons of trees and landscape to Delaware Park.
The entire street measures approximately 200-feet in width, creating a broad roadway. The median is planted with numerous elm trees on a grid layout, helping give this area a shady, forest-like orderly appearance. Streetlights on Bidwell Parkway are cast iron decorative luminares on poles with Art Nouveau
Houses on Bidwell Parkway date from approximately the 1890s to 1900s, and many feature more high-style examples of Queen Anne, Colonial Revival and Tudor Revival styles. The street also contains several apartment buildings, compatibly scaled to the neighboring 2 1⁄2 or 3-story houses.
Notable buildings on Bidwell Parkway include the George L. Thorne House at 50 Bidwell Parkway, designed for one of Buffalo’s most prominent real estate moguls by Bethune, Bethune and Fuchs around 1885. The house at 123 Bidwell Parkway dates to 1895 and was designed by Joseph Lyman Silsbee, a nationally-significant architect and early mentor to Frank Lloyd Wright. It was built for Charles Dudley Arnold, official photographer of the Chicago World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893 and the Buffalo Pan-American Exposition in 1901.
|Built in 1895 for CD
Arnold, this may have been one of [J.
L.] Silsbee's last Buffalo Commissions.
And I think the reason for this later commission is that CD Arnold
photographed the Chicago World Fair in 1893 where Silsbee was
prominent. Silsbee exhibited many of his inventions there such as the
moving sidewalk, and Arnold being an architectural photographer, no
doubt had interaction with Silsbee.
An early book by Arnold shows the influence his trip to France and Europe had on him as he drew and sketched the Renaissance influenced homes of the local people. That Arnold commissioned Silsbee, who was still very active in Chicago, for a special Tudor Revival design with Richardsonian Romanesque elements for his dream home is not surprising.
- Joe Dettelis, 2011 owner of 123 Bidwell Parkway
Source: Thomas G. Yanul, Charles Dudley Arnold: Photographer 1844-1927 (online June 2015)
Used with permission.
Note empty corner lot to left. House has been modified at some time, now has porch across front and other minor changes.
2015 Photo ... Looking west
2017 Photo ... Tower
2015 Photo ... Voussoirs ... Carved shell in tympanum
2015 Photo ... Battered pillar
2015 Photo ... Half-timbering
2015 Photo ... Dormer
2015 Photo ... Copper finials