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Herman Simon House

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1902, William Michler. 41 N. 3rd St.
  • (© George E. Thomas)
  • (William E. Fischer, Jr.)

The three blocks of N. 3rd Street between Center Square and Bushkill Street are largely intact with houses in the variety of fashionable revival styles popular after the Civil War. That of Herman Simon, who owned the world's largest silk, ribbon, and velvet manufacturing plant, at 13th Street across Bushkill Creek, is the grandest. His architect, William Michler, was Easton's leading designer of high-style houses at the turn of the twentieth century. After attending Lafayette College, Michler studied architecture at the University of Pennsylvania and returned in 1893 to Easton. He worked in a variety of picturesque styles, including the Loire Valley chateau theme of the Simon House. A fanciful mansarded affair, it is richly sculpted and boasts likenesses of Simon's wife and daughter in its keystones. Its interior is just as sumptuous, and includes splendid stained glass windows by Philadelphian Nicola D’Ascenzo that depict castles on the Rhine. Somewhat later, Michler built a smaller house for Simon's daughter, this time in the Colonial Revival style, next door to the south. Set back from the street, it forms a court with the larger house. From 1930 to 1994 Simon's mansion housed the Easton YWCA, and it now serves as a shelter for women and children. A few ground-floor rooms, the entrance hall and stair, and the library survive.

Writing Credits

George E. Thomas


What's Nearby


George E. Thomas, "Herman Simon House", [Easton, Pennsylvania], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of PA vol 2

Buildings of Pennsylvania: Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania, George E. Thomas, with Patricia Likos Ricci, Richard J. Webster, Lawrence M. Newman, Robert Janosov, and Bruce Thomas. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2012, 264-265.

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