The house, currently located at 820 W. McKinley Avenue in Kellogg, was constructed in 1906 as the residence for Stanly A. Easton and his bride, Estelle Greenough of Missoula, Montana.
Easton had become general manager for the Kellogg operations of the Bunker Hill & Sullivan Mining & Concentrating Company in 1903. He was the son of an Episcopalian Minister in Santa Cruz, California, and graduated from the University of California at Berkley in 1894 with a degree in Mining Engineering. For 55 years Easton rose through the management of Idaho's largest mining enterprise to President in 1933 and Chairman of the Board until 1958. Bunker Hill was Idaho's largest industrial employer when Easton retired to live in Santa Barbara, California, where he died in December of 1961.
The two story Easton residence was initially constructed west of the Bunker Hill Main Office at 912 W. McKinley. It was moved to its present location in 1940 when space was required to construct a residence at 906 W. McKinley for J. B. (Barney) Haffner, newly hired as the Company's General Manager.
The Easton family moved to 1321 E. Lakeshore Drive in Coeur d'Alene in 1923 with their three daughters. Their Kellogg residence was then converted to a residence for single Bunker Hill staff members and given the name "Staff House."
After the Staff House was moved to 820 W. McKinley in 1940, further modifications were made to create a full basement to be used for Company management meetings and social activities such as wedding receptions and holiday parties.
When The Bunker Hill Company was closed down at the end of 1981, following 94 years of operating as one of the larger mining and smelting complexes in the U.S., the Staff House sat idle without heat until 1986.
The Bunker Limited Partnership, then owners of the idle Bunker Hill operations, were about to tear down building when the newly created Shoshone County Mining and Smelting Museum, Inc., dispatched Board members Jim Miller, Sr., Doris Helmsley and Ray Chapman to see if the Staff House could be given to this group. Jack Kendrick, President of the Partnership, agreed to give the museum group a tentative agreement to use the building.
With a lot of hard work by Museum Board members and other volunteers, the Staff House Museum was able to open the doors in the summer of 1986 with three rooms of exhibits. Kendrick, expressing satisfaction with the progress that was being made to repair the building and create a satisfactory museum, turned over title to the house and property for $1.00 later that year.
Work continued from this time forward to repair the inside damage to the building and restore it to an attractive tourist stop. Several large donations were acquired to help install a furnace to provide heat through the existing hot water radiator system, a new roof was installed, and the building painted. Additional exhibit rooms were developed and within three years displays occupied a dozen rooms on the two floors as well as the basement.
In 1990 Bunker Limited Partnership contributed the 1899 Nordberg Air Compressor which was moved to ground behind the Museum. Once again, many hours of volunteer time were required to prepare the base for this 73.5-ton old compressor and to completely disassemble, weigh, and move it 400 yards and then reassemble the old machine.
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