Visit The Beautiful Petersen House Right Here In Tempe

July 18th, 2022 by

historic marker

The Tempe History Museum is committed to preserving and sharing the city’s rich history with its residents, as well as building connections between those residents and their community. Among their many initiatives is the management of the Niels Petersen House. One of the city’s most beautiful historic homes, the house is now a museum that pays tribute to Tempe’s past and those who prepared the way for future generations.

The Original Owner

Born in Denmark in 1845, Niels Petersen immigrated to the U.S. in 1870, following his service in the English Merchant Marines. He staked his claim in Tempe and began farming, eventually expanding his ranch to more than 1,000 acres and making it one of the area’s leading producers of cattle and grain. He was actively involved in local education, as well as numerous religious, financial, business, civic, and political endeavors, leading him to become one of the area’s wealthiest and most respected citizens. In 1892 he commissioned architect James Creighton to design a two-story home in the Queen Anne Victorian style, which came to be one of the most impressive homes in the region.

History of the House

After Petersen’s death in 1923, the house eventually ended up in the hands of Reverend Edward Decker who inherited it in 1927. Though Decker made some updates, the spacious open floor plan was kept mostly intact. The renovations, completed in a 1930s style, were predominantly made downstairs, leaving the upstairs according to the original Victorian style. The result is a landmark that seems to span multiple eras. The Niels Petersen House was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.

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Visit the Historic Site

Today the Niels Peterson House is open for drop-in visitation and scheduled tours. There’s also a Christmas at the Petersen House scheduled for December of 2022, where visitors can see this beautiful home decorated for the holidays. Come check out this piece of local history.

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