The Snetzer Building was built by developer John McMurdy, an early city attorney, in 1869. The original façade was a very well proportioned Italianate false front design. Over its lifetime, it always contained both retail and residential uses. Its first major owner, for whom the building is named, was Jacob Snetzer, a tailor, as it proudly stated in the still intact sign above the retail doors. He owned and used the building from 1876 until his death in 1913.
After passing through one other owner, the building came under the ownership of Hazel McAdams, one of the social elite of Georgetown and the last owner of the Hotel de Paris, in 1926. It was remodeled by her in the mid 1950s. She removed the false front, put a second addition on the rear of the building, and stuccoed over the wood siding to unify the look of the building. After the death of Ms. McAdams in 1966, it remained unoccupied for 30 years, but was purchased in 1999 by Grace Episcopal Church, located directly to the south, for the purpose of a parish hall, as well as affordable apartments.
In 2001 the Grace Episcopal Church of Georgetown Foundation applied for and received a grant of $74,940 to restore the exterior of the building to the period of significance for the Georgetown/Silver Plume NHLD. This money enabled the church to go forward with restoring the exterior after they had already committed their small congregation to the purchase of the building for $172,00 and interior rehabilitation for affordable housing of $90,000. The grant money paid to remove the stucco that had been applied to the original structure, restore the wood siding, reconstruct the Italianate false front, restore doors and windows, reconstruct the wood boardwalk, and repaint in appropriate colors.
For additional information about this project please contact the State Historical Fund at 303-866-2825.
Upper right: Historic Photo Circa 1900. The man in the white shirt is identified as Mr. Snetzer. Courtesy of the Western History Department-Denver Public Library.
Middle left: Before photo with stucco intact. Courtesy Gary Long.
Lower right: Before photo with stucco intact. Courtesy Gary Long.