The Levi and Ellen O’Neil Hancock House, built in 1882 in Midway, Utah, is significant at the local level under Criterion C in the area of Architecture as an intact example of local residential building construction during the transition of Midway from a rural settlement to an established town ca. 1891. Although made using local tufa, as many early buildings in Midway were, the Hancock House represents an unusually large example (only one other tufa building from this period in Midway was two stories tall), and its incorporation of Italianate stylistic elements is a departure from the more vernacular design of these early buildings (Oliver 2010). It therefore embodies the distinctive characteristics of this transitional period in the 1880s and 1890s within the community.
The period of significance for the Hancock House is 1882, the year of its construction. The year 1882 fell within a period of intense change in Midway. While Midway remained an outlying agricultural settlement of the Church of Jesus-Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church or Mormons) in 1882, it was also beginning to transition to a well-established town and local agricultural hub. The Hancock House and the experiences of the Hancock family at this point in history reflect the broader historic patterns of Midway as a community at the time of the house’s construction. These include the economic development of the town and its economic diversification through the employment of many residents in nearby mining operations and the effects of national events and economic trends. At this point, the LDS Church also provided a social and religious anchor point for much of the community. The Hancock House is a physical embodiment of the lives of its residents at the point of its construction and remains a significant historic resource in Midway, Utah.