Historic Properties of Spokane
Matthews, Edwin & Dorothy, House
Built in 1938, the Edwin & Dorothy Matthews House is eligible for listing on the Spokane Register of Historic Places under Category C for its architectural significance as a typical representation of the Renaissance Revival style. The property’s period of significance is defined as the year it was built in 1938. The Matthews House was the first home to be erected in the residential Rockwood Vista Addition, a prominently located area adjacent to East Rockwood Boulevard. Prized for its “scenic vista sites,” the Rockwood Vista Addition was soon filled with new homes designed and constructed by prominent Spokane architects and builders.4 The architect who designed the Matthews House was Spokane master Henry C. Bertelsen, who earlier was a business partner to Kirtland K. Cutter, one of Spokane’s most celebrated architects. The first owners of the 1938 Matthews House were Edwin S. Matthews and his wife, Dorothy Matthews. A Harvard University graduate with degrees in science and business, Edwin Matthews helped grow the Electro-Kold refrigeration firm in Spokane, which became “one of the largest household refrigerator manufacturers in the United States.”5 Matthews purchased the company and introduced a new type of refrigeration—commercial refrigeration and air conditioning now used worldwide. Edwin & Dorothy Matthews owned & resided in the Matthews House for 25 years from 1938 to 1963.