After growing out of their house next door at 322 Summit Avenue, William and Carrie Lightner built a new home at 318 Summit Avenue in 1893 for $24,000. Constructed of light Sioux Falls jasper and dark Bayfield brownstone, the mansion was designed by architect Cass Gilbert in the Romanesque style. Inside features a central hall with a grand staircase, library, large kitchen, music room, and a dining room, all furbished with ornate oak and mahogany woodwork.
William H. Lightner, a prominent attorney, was born in 1856 in Pennsylvania. He married Carrie Drake on October 29th, 1885, the daughter of Elias F. Drake who built the first railroad in Minnesota. William died in 1936 and Carrie stayed in the home until her death in 1945. Their three children then sold the mansion, and it was divided into apartments shortly after. It recently underwent a massive restoration and today it is used as a private residence.