Cappon House & Settlers House
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The Cappon House in Holland, Michigan is a two-story Italianate structure built in 1874 for Isaac Cappon and his large family. Cappon, a Dutch immigrant, was a successful local businessman and the first mayor of Holland. Nearby Settlers House was built around 1867 and was occupied by a series of local working class families. This small home survived the Great Holland Fire in 1871 and continued to be inhabited until the 1990s. The Cappon House Museum appears as it did around the turn of the 20th century, and the Settlers House looks as it did after surviving the Great Fire of 1871. The Holland Museum is in charge of the operations for both the Cappon and Settlers House.
Backstory and Context
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Three years after the Great Fire of Holland in 1871, Dutch architect John R. Kleyn built this two-story Italianate-style home for Issac Cappon. Cappon (1830-1902) was born in the Netherlands but immigrated to the United States in 1847, first settling in Rochester, New York, then making his way to Holland the next year. A savvy-businessman, Cappon founded and operated one of Holland's most successful industries: Cappon and Bertsch Leather Company. The success of Cappon and Bertsch Leather Co. made Cappon one of the wealthiest men in Holland. After the incorporation of Holland in 1867, Cappon was elected the first mayor and served a total of four terms.
A staple piece of architecture in Holland, the Cappon House remained in the family until the death of one of Issac's sixteen children, daughter Lavinia, in the late 1970s, and she willed the contents to the local Netherlands Museum. The Museum then partnered with the city of Holland to purchase the property. Since the early 1980s, the Holland Historical Trust has worked to preserve the historic Holland home and it is open to the public to tour. The Cappon family's personal belongings and furnishings remain intact today.
Located just five doors away from the Cappon House is the historic Settlers House of Holland. The Settlers House reflects the lives of regular working class families in Holland from the 1860s until the end of the 20th century. Settlers House predates the Cappon House and survived the Great Fire of 1871. As was the case with the Cappon House, the Settlers House was preserved to how it appeared around the time of the Great Fire by the Holland Historical Trust.
MichMarkers. The Cappon House / Isaac Cappon, MichMarkers. Accessed August 24th 2019. https://www.michmarkers.com/default?page=L1134.
Briggs, Joshua & DeJonge, Madalyn. Isaac Cappon, Digital Holland, Michigan. Accessed August 24th 2019. https://digitalholland.org/isaac-cappon/.
Holland Museum. Settlers House, Holland Museum. Accessed August 24th 2019. https://hollandmuseum.org/venue/settlers-house/.
Holland Michigan. Cappon House Museum, Holland Michigan. Accessed August 25th 2019. https://www.holland.org/things-do/historical/cappon-house-museum.
Digital Holland, Michigan