Historic Homes Feature: The Aaron Kitchel House, 1890 Queen Anne Cottage

Style: Queen Anne cottage

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The Kitchel House was built about 1890, when Fort Collins was growing at a rapid pace with a population of about 2,000 people. This home is a local version of a Queen Anne Cottage, complete with irregular hipped roofs, several styles of dormer windows, a square bay window, and wonderful use of brick and stone. The corner entrance is unusual, now highlighted by the wraparound porch.

The first owner was Aaron Kitchel, a Mayflower descendant and Civil War veteran of the 23rd Iowa Infantry. He and his wife, Mary Hart Kitchel, moved their family from Iowa to Colorado in 1879. They homesteaded six miles east of Fort Collins where he was successful as a pioneer farmer.

They later moved into town, and Kitchel served for three years as a Larimer County Commissioner. Following Kitchel’s death in 1910, George C. McCormick, (Kitchel’s nephew) and his wife, Carrie, of the Morning Express newspaper bought the house and lived in it until at least 1938. Other residents include Edith Coffman, Alexander and Mae Dotzenko, and Willard Norton. Susan Walker purchased the house in 2004.

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The current owners, Jim and Carol Goettl, bought the house in 2013. They took the interior down to the studs and redesigned the house with tall baseboards, crown molding, and new wood floors. They added period touches like the marblebrick fireplace, subway tiles in the kitchen and bathrooms, and furnished the house with family and found antiques. They finished the back porch, earlier just wood framed and unheated, into a snug family room, and tucked their washer and dryer into a nook in the office.