Saturday, December 18, 2010

At Home in Rochester: The Lloyd G. Satterlee Residence

The cement block home on the southwest corner of North Main and Griggs streets was built by Lloyd Garrison Satterlee, an inventor and entrepreneur, in 1905. Satterlee had invented a process for manufacturing cement roofing tiles and designed the house to showcase his product. He began construction in the fall of 1905, and in the spring of 1906, the Rochester Era reported on his progress:
L.G. Satterlee is busy finishing his house in the Albertson addition, the cement walls of which were up last fall. He proposes a roof of cement shingles of his own patent and manufacture -- both house and barn -- which will furnish a practical test of their utility in all respects. The residence is a model of convenience and is to be finished in the best possible manner.
The house must have attracted positive attention, because Satterlee and other local investors including E.S. Letts, William C. Chapman and George A. Hammond formed the Twentieth Century Cement Tile Roofing Company in Rochester in 1907 to manufacture and sell Satterlee's invention. The company lasted but a few years, and Satterlee moved on from Rochester, eventually settling in Santa Cruz, California.

Eventually, houses on North Main Street transitioned from residential to business use, and the Satterlee residence became the home of Norman Hastings' Culligan Soft Water Service. Today, it is occupied by law offices.

The L.G. Satterlee house is 105 years old this year.
The accompanying photograph shows the Satterlee residence as it looked in 1907.

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