Dennis A. Smyth House
Designed by S.T. Whitaker, and constructed about 1889, this Victorian brick house combines several high-style elements in a design that makes it unique in Ogden and in the state. A colorful character and successful businessman, Dennis A. Smyth, born in 1858 in Ireland, owned the house for many years. His family hosted several important dignitaries including President William Howard Taft.
The Smyth House is significant as the best example of Victorian Eclecticism in Ogden and as one of the best examples of that type in the state. At the
present time no other building in Utah has been identified which combines the elements of several high styles to create so unique a composition. The house is also significant as the residence of the colorful D. A. Smyth, a local
businessman who was involved in managing several Ogden companies. The family also hosted several important dignitaries Including President William Howard Taft, It was: built in about 1889, designed by S.T. Whitaker.
The house located at 635 25th Street in Ogden, has been known by a number of names. Some of these include: Nye Villa, Smyth Villa, the Irish Castle and Christ the King Convent. The house was designed by a prominent Ogden architect, S. T. Whitaker and was built about 1889.
The original owner of the house was Ephraim H. Nye. Nye was part owner in Dalton, Nye and Cannon, a store specializing in stationery, books, and music and later a partner in Nye and Hobson. In about 1897, Nye and his wife Harriett, left Ogden and moved to San Francisco. In 1898, Dennis A. Smyth acquired the property but did not move into the house until about 1910.
Dennis A. Smyth was born in 1858 in County Cayan, Ireland. He came to the
United States via Scotland in the late 1870s, settling in Laramie, Wyoming and worked there for twelve years with the Union Pacific. He went to Ogden in 1889. By 1895, he had become proprietor of the European Hotel and Diamond Sample Room, residing there until his move to this house. A real estate book entitled, Ogden, The Junction City stated that “D. A. Smyth, the general proprietor, boasts for Ogden by keeping one of the finest hotels in the state.” In addition to his proprietorship of the hotel, Smyth was also
vice-president of the J. P. O’Neill Construction Company and the Commercial National Bank, and vice-president of the Intermountain Land and Live Stock Company.
In addition to his business dealings, Smyth was a very colorful man as is
illustrated in a letter from his daughter. She explained that her father
owned a trained macaw, which would ride on a perch in Mrs. Smyth’s Pachard. The bird accompanied the family on trips to Mexico and Yellowstone.
During his later years, Smyth had lights strung from tree to tree and had
wanted to put up colored lights at Christmas, an idea to which Mrs. Smyth