This past weekend I was able to travel to Duluth, Minnesota, for the first time to visit a college roommate. We hiked around the gorgeous Gooseberry Falls, ate fish and chips at tourist filled Canal Park, tried different beers at multiple brewery’s and admired the beauty of Lake Superior.

Another highlight of the trip was touring the Glensheen Mansion. It is the family home of Chester and Clara Congdon who found their fortune after Chester assisted with the development of the iron and copper mining resources of the Lake Superior area and was also a lawyer with a successful firm in Duluth. The 39 room home was finished in 1908 costing $854,000, which is an estimated $21 million in today’s dollars. The mansion was donated to the University of Duluth in 1968 and has since continued to be restored and be seen by over 100,000 visitors a year.


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[Me at the front door of the Glensheen Mansion. Open year round for tours.]


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[Chester and Clara’s son Walter’s room. Blue signified first born of the family.]



[One of the 15 fireplaces in the mansion located in daughter Helen’s room. ]


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[Stenciling on the walls was painted over in the 1970’s. It costs hundreds of dollars to restore a section as small as one of those birds.]


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[Glensheen has 10 bathrooms. And only men used the shower because it was believed women’s skin was too delicate.]


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[There is 16 inches of concrete between each floor, eliminating most of the creaking. The architect had only created sky scrapers until the Glensheen Mansion.]



[Second generation gardner for the mansion lived on site until 2004 when he entered a nursing home.]


There are so many other fun facts I learned about this historic mansion I don’t have space to share, so I suggest you making a trip to Duluth to tour the mansion yourself! It is definitely worth the stop.  If you could afford it, would you want to live in a 39 room home? I honestly don’t think I would! But I would love to hear about your idea of a dream home.  Coffee’s on me, give me a call at 605.261.8396.