Joseph W. Young House
Built 1925, listed in the National Register of Historic Places 1989
1055 Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood
Joseph W. Young House, shortly after construction
Image Courtesy of the Fort Lauderdale Historical Society
Joseph W. Young House, 1970s
Image Courtesy of the Broward County Historical Commission
Loggia of Joseph W. Young House, 2008
Image Courtesy of Broward County Libraries Division
During the 1920s Florida land boom, 1055 Hollywood Boulevard was built as the residence of Joseph W. Young, founder of Hollywood, a planned community. Young oversaw every detail in the development of Hollywood. An urban developer, Young sought to protect environmental quality, prevent misuse of land and enhance property values by guiding Hollywood’s growth and development. He introduced to South Florida the concepts of a physical grid for the town’s layout, building restrictions, zoning and oceanfront development. Young also championed the creation of present-day Port Everglades, located between Hollywood and Fort Lauderdale. Through the early application of growth management tools, Young stimulated and encouraged the creation of residential neighborhoods in attractive surroundings.
The 1926 hurricane devastated Young’s dream city, frightening away the majority of newcomers to South Florida. They failed to make payments on the homes they had purchased and the bottom fell out of South Florida’s booming real-estate market. Young lost control of much of his Hollywood holdings as a result of lawsuits and other legal actions. Not disillusioned, he continued to invest in land. Tragically, in 1934, he died of heart failure in the study of his Hollywood residence.
Young’s Spanish/Mission/Eclectic style residence was built for $25,000. It was one of the first residences in Hollywood and is also one of the finest; nothing else in Hollywood compares. The house was designed by the prominent Indianapolis architects, Rubush and Hunter, who also designed the Indianapolis City Hall and, locally, the Hollywood Beach Hotel and the Flamingo Hotel on Miami Beach. The house displays all the classic features of Mediterranean Revival style architecture, such as an inner courtyard, various types and levels of roofs, balconies, balconets, loggias, arches, parapets, scuppers, enriched corbels, a bell tower and medallions. Materials include red clay barrel tile, terracotta, stucco, heavy timbers and wrought iron. Large stone urns flank the major entrances. The interior of the house is distinguished by hardwood or clay tile floors, heavy beamed twelve-foot ceilings, wrought iron gates and fixtures, arches, and stuccoed or rough plastered walls.
The house has been in the possession of many owners over the years, some of whom have been more sensitive than others in retaining its unique historical characteristics. Fortunately, the original architect’s blueprints exist. The elegant 23-room mansion was renovated and restored to its former grandeur in the early 21st century, and is still privately-owned.