The front portion of this Carpenter Gothic style house was constructed around 1860 and was a prefab brought around the horn. The prefab section was added to an existing structure. The framing construction is very unusual: no nails. All the framing timbers are numbered for easy assembly and are put together with dowels. The walls are plastered, using horsehair as the strengthening material. Many of the window panes are original and have a purplish hue. The floors are solid 1 1/2 inch thick fir with no subfloor. An addition on the south side of the house was constructed at the turn of the century, to allow for a sun porch. The front yard has a 240 year old Bay tree, and the back has a 100+ year old Ginko tree.
Calvin Russell, a carpenter and businessman, purchased the property in 1856. He died in 1876, and his wife continued to live in the house until 1887. In 1891 Mary Robinson purchased the property for $4000 in gold coin. She and her husband John G. Robinson, a druggist in Santa Clara, lived at the house. Mary was the daughter of James Enright, a valley pioneer, and Margaret Duncan. A relative of Margaret's, Isadora Duncan, performed at the house for Mary and friends in the early 1900's. Interestingly, the house was in and remained in only Mary's name.