Updated: Aug 19
Glamour in the Province
Some beauty for you: the Wise Mansion in Paris, Texas!
In 1887 or thereabouts, W.B. Wise, a cotton merchant based in Paris, Lamar County, Texas decided to show off his wealth by building a very intricate and large Queen Anne style home, made of brick and, according to the National Register listing, "more sophisticated than most of its style and date in Texas."
The plot of land that the Wises bought to build the house was once home to a race track in 1885 (see the Bird's Eye View map). No more fun times for Parisians!
The Wises sold the house around 1916 to the Fieldings. The back of the property was given to the city for an athletic field at one point, and then improved using NYA (National Youth Administration) labor in 1942. It still hosts softball and baseball games. So I guess the fun times resumed 😉
The photographs come from the Texas Historical Commission, which documented the house for the National Register's application from 1984. The application noted that the still extant carriage house made the property special (two other outbuildings had been destroyed, an octagonal pavilion and the servant's quarters) . The application did not list the automobile garage, which was erected at the latest by 1914, though it also still stands. One photograph from the bunch is mislabeled, I believe. A wooden building, painted blue, is designated as the "Wise House Barn" but it's not located near the Wise Home. Rather, the barn sits at the corner just southeast of the Scott Mansion (now, Roden-Pryor Funeral Home).
The Wise House has been nicely restored. Its lot has not been sold and subdivided, making it a beautifully intact historical place off West Washington Street. Enjoy the photos!