On the Market: Historic Julia Morgan-Designed Residence

Stairwell of Wilson House
Stairwell of Wilson House
  • Wilson House in Vallejo, designed by Julia Morgan

    Wilson House in Vallejo, designed by Julia Morgan


  • Dining room of Wilson House

    Dining room of Wilson House


An early and fine example of architect Julia Morgan's residences in the First Bay Tradition is on the market in Vallejo, Calif. Designed by Morgan (1872-1957) in an eclectic Beaux-Arts chalet-style with neoclassical and Arts & Crafts features, the magnificent home was completed in 1909 and has been carefully maintained by a single owner for the past 40 years.

Known for her exquisite Hearst Castle -- newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst's San Simeon mansion -- Morgan is considered to be the first woman architect licensed in California. She was also the first woman admitted to the architecture program at l’École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris.

Vallejo's Wilson House is on the National Registry of Historic Homes.

Surrounded by gardens, the 3,390 square-foot home's floor plan is considered a butterfly layout with equally balanced right and left wings, according to realtor.com.

It is listed at $1.2 million, ranking the property in the top tier of prices in Vallejo. A "right buyer" who appreciates the home's historical significance is sought, agent Jason Born told the Times-Herald. Vallejo is situated between some of the far pricier ragions of San Francisco and Napa wine country.

The previous owner, Judith Hillburg, was a fixture in Vallejo's preservation scene. Her estate is selling the residence which was once chock-full of Hillburg's art and antiques collections.

“The Metropolitan Museum in New York asked us if we would donate a 15th century Armenian silk road period manuscript, so we did that in her name,” daughter Linda (Hillburg) Barker told the Times-Herald of the collections, ranging form antiquities to Pop art. “We’re selling quite a bit of it, so it lives on, and some of it we’re keeping because it’s beautiful and reminds us of our mother.”

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