Alexander Mansion, circa 1886, is one of the most impressive Victorian homes you will ever find. Originally built for a local judge, Thomas Wilson, the house is masterfully constructed in early Winona’s turn-of-the-century lumber baron style, which showcases exceptional woodwork and architectural details. The Alexander family lived in the home for fifty-plus years and the Minnesota bed and breakfast now aptly bears their name.
The Alexander’s had strong ties to the J.R.Watkins Company. Maude King Alexander was the stepdaughter of company founder, J.R. Watkins, and was the sister of the second company president, E.L. King. Maude had a number of positions with the company and, notably, wrote the Watkins cookbooks under her pen name of Elaine Allen. Durand C. Alexander became senior vice president of operations. He was originally from New York. They had met on an ocean liner 1915 c.; he was a graduate of Columbia University and he was doing engineering work in the orient and she was on one of her many worldly trips.