San Francisco Landmarks
The Charles Lewis Hinkel House is an unusual example of transitional Second French Empire residential architecture built by Charles Lewis Hinkel (1847-1908), second generation of the Hinkel family, as his personal residence.
Charles Lewis Hinkel's father, Charles E. Hinkel, was a German native who had arrived in San Francisco in 1852 and went into business as a residential builder. Charles Lewis and his three sons and a grandson continued the house-building tradition into the fourth generation. Rows of Hinkel-built Italianate houses are evident from Pacific Heights, through the Western Addition and into Eureka Valley.
Charles Lewis built his home at 280 Divisadero on a lot that is large by San Francisco standards, 50 feet by 137.5 feet (the standard lot is 25 x 100).
He paid attention to quality design, with finished detailing on side and rear elevations. Interior finishings were of the quality a successful builder would select for his own home. The large lot allowed space for landscaping and a carriage house, completing the presentation of an intact nineteenth century residence.
The building remains a private residence.
Source: San Francisco Planning Commission Resolution No. 11390 dated 30 June 1988.