Kempf House: Preserving Ann Arbor’s Victorian Heritage


Nestled in the heart of Ann Arbor, Michigan, the Kempf House stands as a testament to the city’s rich Victorian architectural heritage. This historic home, dating back to the 1850s, has been meticulously preserved and transformed into a museum, offering visitors a glimpse into the life and times of Ann Arbor’s early residents. Ann Arbor, MI can be seen here. 

A Victorian Time Capsule:

The Kempf House, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is a well-preserved example of mid-19th-century architecture. The home’s intricate woodwork, high ceilings, and period-appropriate furnishings transport visitors back to an era when Ann Arbor was a burgeoning frontier town. Each room within the house is a carefully curated exhibit showcasing the lifestyle and tastes of its Victorian inhabitants. Click here to read about Paddling Paradise: Navigating the Beauty of the Huron River Water Trail.

Musical Heritage:

Beyond its architectural significance, Kempf House is renowned for its musical heritage. The house was once the residence of the Kempf family, which included renowned pianist and composer Frederick Alexander Kempf. Today, the museum hosts regular musical events featuring performances on the historic 1857 Steinway piano that graces the parlor.

Educational Programs and Events:

Kempf House serves as more than just a museum; it actively engages the community through educational programs and events. Guided tours provide insights into the history of the house and its occupants, while workshops and lectures explore various aspects of Victorian life and culture. Special events, such as holiday celebrations and musical recitals, create a vibrant cultural hub within the Ann Arbor community.

Community Support and Preservation:

The preservation of Kempf House is a community effort, with local organizations and dedicated volunteers working together to ensure the longevity of this historic gem. Ann Arbor residents and visitors alike can appreciate the importance of maintaining such architectural treasures as a link to the city’s past.


Kempf House stands as a living testament to Ann Arbor’s Victorian roots, offering a window into the past for all who enter its doors. From its architectural splendor to its musical legacy, the house continues to play a vital role in preserving and sharing the rich history of this vibrant Michigan community.