Artemesia is an important part of California's architectural history.


"THE HOUSE which is now being constructed by Commonwealth Home Builders, will be of the Swiss chalet type and will have a setting distinctly in keeping with its architectural style, its site being a cliff 300 feet in height, overlooking a wide panorama of city, valley, ocean and hills,”

    ...wrote the Los Angeles Times in 1913 of the Frederick E. Engstrum house, then under construction in the steep hills north of Hollywood.

    At a time when Southern California architects were increasingly interested in historic architectural precedents, the deep roof overhangs, projecting rafter tails, and shake siding designed by architect Frank A Brown for the three-story Engstrum house were indebted to the Greene brothers’ earlier work.


    The landscape architect Alexandre Aurèle Vermeulen (1885–1983 incorporated the existing rolling terrain of the 12-acre site into his garden design and created a cascading stream that originated under the terrace bridge and ran over what appeared to be a natural course of fieldstones, down the steep hillside to a fishpond just above the pump station.  Vermeulen’s plan provided for a Japanese garden set into the canyon, and a deer park.

    Frederick Engstrum sold Artemesia before he died, and although the lower portions of the property have been subdivided, the house and the land down to the pump house, which is extant, remain as one property.

Excerpted from "Houses of Los Angeles, Volume I," Sam Watters, Acanthus Press (2007).