The past few years has seen an outcry from people wanting to preserve the historic nature of Excelsior’s built environment. The pique of property rights versus protectionist efforts colided when Greg and Carrie Larson desired to demolish the house at 200 Lake Street.
The house was built in 1912 for Dana L. and Grace H. Case. Dana Case was the cashier of the East Side State Bank in Minneapolis. He built the bungalow in the Craftsman/Arts and Crafts style for him, his wife and his mother-in-law. The century-old house commanded a grand view of Excelsior Bay, but it did not conform to modern needs, as it was small and had only a one-car tuck-under garage.
In an attempt to diffuse the situation, the Larsons offered the house free on the condition that it be removed from the site. Their neighbor in Eden Prairie, Dan Brattland, had recently purchased the 1890 Walter Milnor residence at 6 Third St. with intensions of restoring it.
The property had nearly 30,000 square feet of land, and the City of Excelsior allowed him to subdivide the lot, where he moved the 200 Lake St. house to 7 George St. He now commands the responsibility of returning two of Excelsior’s architectural relics—of greatly disparate styles—to viable homes.
Scott McGinnis is a local historian and volunteer for the Excelsior-Lake Minnetonka Historical Society. elmhs.org