Eureka is well-known for its Victorian architecture, and the city’s streets are a treasure trove of elaborate and lovingly restored buildings. The Carson Mansion — perhaps the most-photographed Victorian in America — is said to have employed more than 100 craftsmen at one time for the carving, finishing and installing of its intricate decorative flourishes. There are over 1600 historically-designated and noteworthy examples of Victorian homes all over Eureka proper. If you are a Victorian buff, take a meander through the easy-to-navigate streets of Eureka and see a town whose history is still proudly standing. Almost every street in Eureka’s Old Town boasts at least one Victorian.
Victorian architecture is not a particular style; rather the term refers to any of a number of revival styles of architecture popular during the reign of Queen Victoria, who reigned during the late 19th century through 1901. “Victorian” architecture from the early 1900s would more properly be called Edwardian, after Edward VII, who followed Victoria. In any event, the actual architectural style of the Carson mansion is Queen Anne revival, an ornate variant of the more austere original Queen Anne style of the 1700s. Eureka boasts an impressive collection of historic buildings in many of these Victorian styles, including French Second Empire, Greek Revival, Italianate, Stick-Eastlake, and of course, Queen Anne. Many are on the National Register of Historic Places.