Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Located at 322 West Center Street, Yreka, California, stands the brick Charles Iunker Home built in 1861. Charles Iunker was a German immigrant who was an early settler in Yreka, arriving in 1855. Mr. Iunker started a brewery on South Oregon Street and it was known as the Iunker Brewery or Pacific Brewery. He also was the owner of the Bella Union Saloon on Miner Street. The Iunker Brothers ~ Charles and Albert, also owned a successful hardware store on Miner Street. When the Oregon-California Railroad originally decided to bypass Yreka local prominent businessmen organized the Yreka Railroad Company to build a connecting line. Mr. Iunker was one of the large stockholders according to historical notes.
There is a early residence photograph of this home in one of the Siskiyou County Historical Society Publications, specifically the 2003 The Siskiyou Pioneer issue on a Photographic History of Siskiyou County. (This may still be available at the Siskiyou County Museum) It is noted in the publication that when the home was first built Mr. Iunker had gas lines and water on both the first and second story. In earlier days the home was surrounded by a white picket fence, had a yard and two trees in the front. There was a covered porch on the East side of the building. The two chimneys apparent in the photograph are original to the home.
Today this fine building no longer serves as a home but still serves the community as business offices. Center Street is located just South of Miner Street and just North of Court House Square. It has wonderful historic presence, but is often overlooked by tourists or local history buffs because it is not directly in the National Historic District and sits amongst other newer business buildings.
Copyright: Claudia A. East, 2008