Saturday, June 28, 2014

Arch Street Houses

In recent news, it was announced that the Lytle Park Historic District had come up for renewal after being in existence for 50 years. Western and Southern Financial Group, who owns many of the buildings within the district, asked for the removal of several of the buildings from the renewal plan. The district with new boundaries was approved on June 18, 2014., May 26, 2014
This blog highlights the buildings on Arch Street, now removed from the district and are expected to be demolished in the future by Western and Southern.
While the Hamilton County Auditor dates these buildings from 1880, 1860 and 1865, the dates are actually quite different.

The house on the left above is 425 Arch Street. The building was actually constructed around 1870 after the lot was purchased by Henry Werry from Laura Wiggins. See the 2nd Series Index below from the Hamilton County Recorder.
Jacob Guelich had purchased Lots 10, 11 and 12 from the United States, who was the owner of this subdivision.

1887 Sanborn Insurance Map - Source
The buildings outlined are 421, 423 and 425 Arch Street from left to right.
The Werry family built their modest brick home and lived there from 1870 until the death of Henry's wife, Elizabeth in 1913 at the age of 84. Henry, who was a blacksmith, passed away in 1875 when he was just 45 years old.
1870 United States Census, showing the Werry and Guelich families living at 425 and 429 Arch Street.
By 1920, the home was owned by William Farrell, who lived there with his mother. They rented furnished rooms in other buildings that they owned. In 1925, John Gibbons, a watchman, lived there with his wife Mary, who continued living there after John's death. It was then purchased by William and Francis Miller, whose family sold it to Western & Southern in 1990.

423 Arch Street, by Bob Schwartz
This home at 423 Arch Street was not the first building on this lot. It appears from evidence found in the city directories that there was another structure here that served as a boarding house from approximately 1857 until 1868. The lot was purchased from Henry Werry by Joseph J. Gest in 1869, who owned the house on Third Street directly behind this lot. Gest sold the lot just two years later to J. G. Hendricks. This is the family that built the house that stands today.
The Cincinnati Daily Enquirer; Sept. 9, 1871; pg. 3
John G. Hendricks was born in Germany in 1814 and came to the United States around 1844. He had a successful tinning business on Front Street which was continued by his son George. In 1880, John owned a gentlemen's and furnishing goods store at Gilmore's Landing. George and his wife Elizabeth had eight children, however three died in childhood and two sons died in roofing accidents. John passed away in 1891.
Cincinnati Enquirer; Dec 9, 1891; pg. 4
Elizabeth lived in the home until her death in 1907. Her estate sold the house to Joseph Falloni, who owned a fruit stand at Pearl and Vine Streets. Falloni had arrived in the US from Italy in 1874 and rented rooms to Julia Castellini and her two children. The building was sold in May, 1921 to Harry Falone, who in turn sold it to Carrie Farrell just one year later. With new ownership, the Castellini family moved out and the Farrell's lived here with Frank Mitchell and his wife until the Mitchell's purchased it in 1929. They continued as owners until 1978. It was purchased by Arch Street Associates in 1986 and Western & Southern in 1997.

1904-1930 Sanborn Insurance Map - Source
Some interesting features here include the University Club, 2nd District Police Station (1910), Guilford Public School (1912) and the Cincinnati Museum of Natural History (present day site of parking garage). The former carriage house at 421 Arch Street is marked as a private garage.
421 Arch Street, by Bob Schwartz
While the Auditor dates this blue building from 1865, it took its present appearance around 1911, when it became a funeral home, run by William Fuldner. Prior to this, it was a carriage house, quite possibly built in the 1860's. Fuldner ran his business here until his death, when his son Howard took over until 1978. It was then sold to Arch Street Associates in 1982 and Western & Southern in 1997.

One last bit of information on Arch Street. Why is it named Arch Street? Here is an explanation from 1961.
Cincinnati Post & Times-Star; Sept. 20, 1961; p. 21
More on Fort Washington and its connection with the Lytle Park Historic District will come in another post!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Before Davis Furniture - 1119-1123 Main Street, Over-the-Rhine

1119-1123 Main Street - Source
While most people associate the deteriorating building on the west side of Main Street between Central Parkway and 12th Street with the Davis Furniture Company, the history of the building goes further back than the business' arrival in 1939. Davis Furniture was founded in 1902 and had a store on Sycamore Street until 1931, when they moved to the now-demolished Jefferson Hall at the southwest corner of 12th and Main.

So what businesses did occupy these buildings before Davis Furniture and just how old are they? I went off digging to find these answers.
1869 Titus Map - Source
Parcels outlined in red show where the building stands today.
I started with the old maps available on-line to find the old addresses of the buildings. You see, while we think today of the Davis Furniture Building as one, it is actually two separate buildings. I took a look at maps from 1887 and 1891 from the Sanborn Insurance Company. They used these maps to show the construction materials used in the buildings and noted any special equipment that could help or hinder firefighters. These were then used to estimate premiums for policy holders.  These maps are such a valuable resource that open clues to the past.
1887 Sanborn Insurance Map - Source
453, 455. 457 & 459 Main Street outlined in red.
As noted above, these buildings were once address 453 & 455 Main for present-day 1119 Main and 457 & 459 Main for present-day 1123 Main. These maps also show that the buildings standing today were also there in 1887, giving at least a starting date for construction. The Hamilton County Auditor dates 1119 Main at being built in 1870 and 1123 Main build date as 1865. These dates come from old tax records and are a good starting point but not always accurate.

1891 Sanborn Insurance Map - Source
1904-1930 Sanborn Insurance Map - Source
This map was updated annually from 1904 to 1930, with any changes added to the original map.
1950 Sanborn Insurance Map - Source
2014 CAGIS Map - Source
The maps give clues about addresses and some information about building uses over time. However, for further information, I then looked through the city directories available on-line with the Public Library. I found one of the addresses in the 1856 Directory:
Kiesewelter Gottfried, (Holzgrefe & Co.)  bds. 453 Main
Lutz Hy, bar. k. 453 Main
Lutz John, cof. house 453 Main

However it seems both buildings weren't completed. Perhaps they were both under construction, since the 1857 Directory shows much more activities at the four addresses:
Holzgref & Co., (William H.& Godfrey Kiecsewetter), mer. tailors, 453 Main

Mueller Jac., lock smith, 455 Main
Mueller v., turner, 455 Main
Siglog John, lab., 455 Main
Bleuler Adolph, paper hanger, 455 Main
GOTTMANN PHILIP, Manuf. and Imp. Paper Hangings, 455 Main
Heuke Chas.H., tailor, 455 Main

LUTZ JOHN, Coff. and Boarding House, 457 Main
Haack Geo.,bar. k., 457 Main
Jung Dar., bar kpr., 457 Main
Lutz Hy., bar k. 457 Main

By 1860, it is clear these buildings are fully occupied by both businesses and tenants:
Flachs Mrs. Mary, embroidery, 453 Main
Goerentz F., portrait painter, 453 Main
Holzgrefe Wm., tailor, 453 Main
Mueller Mrs. M., laundress, 453 Main

GOTTMAN  PHILIP, Paper Hangings, 455 Main
Gester Christian, cab. mkr., 455 Main
Wichmann Geo., painter, 455 Main

KREUZBURG & NURRE (Peter M. K. & Joseph N.) Publishers, Booksellers and Binders, 457 Main and 21 Green
NURRE Joseph, (Kreuzburg & N.,) 457 Main
Vonder A. I. , clk., 457 Main
Von Lint Lambert, bk. binder, 457 Main

LIEBLERT & SON, (Thomas L. & Nicolaus L.) Furniture, 459 Main
Reis Nicholas, grocery ,459 Main
Wempe Jos. A., clk., 459 Main

1890 City Directory Ad for Arnoldt's Doll Manufactory - Source
I typically search the directories every 5 to 10 years, matching up with the census records when possible. I found that the Nurre family, who were book publishers, lived one of the two buildings for over 37 years. Here is a look at some of the businesses at this location over the years:
Osteroth A. F. mer. tailor, 453 Main
GOTTMAN  PHILIP, Importer of Paper Hangings and Window Shades, 455 Main
Piening J. H. furniture, 457 Main
Abel Henry, grocery, 459 Main
Lake B. mer. tailor, 459 Main, h. 23 Woodward

Osterroth August F. mer. tailor, 453 Main
Gottmann Philip, wall paper, 455 Main
Piening J. H. furniture, 457 Main, h. 59 Western Av

ARNOLDT M., Manufacturer of Dolls and Dealer in Toys, 453 Main; Residence, 118 Undercliff Av
Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. 455 Main (& addtl locations)
Boettcher Fred, tailor shop, 457 Main, res. Deer Park
Main Street Furniture Co., H. Franke, manager, 457 Main
Volkerding John C. cigar manuf. 457 Main, h. 59 Western Av

Lynch L. G. propr. Star Shoe House, 1119 Main, res. Norwood
BREWER THOS. E. , Ice Machine and Electric Engineering a Specialty; Satisfaction Guaranteed on all kinds of Machines, 1121 Main
Dine Philip, propr. Dine's Furniture House, 1123 Main, h. 744 W. 7th
Ruboll Henry, tailor, 1123 Main, h. 2725 Scioto
DINE'S FURNITURE HOUSE, Philip Dine, Proprietor; I. M. Helwitz, Manager; Manufacturers and Dealers in Furniture, Carpets, Stoves and Household Goods, 1123 and 1125 Main
Weddendorf Henry W. tailor, 1125 Main, h. 2574 Fenner

Lynch  L G prop Star Shoe House 1119 Main res Norwood
DINE'S FURNITURE HOUSE, Philip Dine, Proprietor; Dealers in Furniture, Carpets, Stoves and Household
Goods, 1123 and 1125 Main

Star Shoe Market Co 1119 Main
Eisendrath Clara (wid Nathan J) millinery 1123 Main h 832 Cleveland Av
Army Store Geo G Wuest mgr 1125 Main
Biederman Reinhart cigarmfr 1125 Main h 2151 Vine

1119 Canfield Piano Co (The)
1121 Unger Harry ladles' apparel
1123 Apple J W threads
1123 Guarantee Shoe Store
1125 Zitzas Chas restaurant
1125 (2d fl) Biederman Reinhard cigar mfr
1125 (3d fl) Brockton Shoe Trimming Co

1119 Bragg Shoe Stores
1119 Maiorano Vincent tailor
1121 Unger Harry ladies' apparel
1121 Bateman A G paperhanger
1123-25 Cincinnati Merchandise Co (The) wholesale notions
1123 Mesh's Ready-to-Wear ladies' wear

1119 Frankel Shoe Co
1121 Cummins Fannie E ladies' ready-to-wear
1123 Gordon Nathan furniture

1119 Siegel Marvin B men’s furngs
1123 Davis Furniture Co

For a complete list of all the tenants and businesses, check out this document I put together. The directories didn't identify the owners of the building though. So I checked through the Cincinnati Enquirer articles, also available from the Public Library, and found this:
The Cincinnati Daily Enquirer; May 10, 1871; pg. 3
The building now addressed as 1119 Main Street was for sale in 1871. Then I found this mention of the Nurre family:
Cincinnati Enquirer; Jan 3, 1873; pg. 3
These dimensions and names clearly matched up to the directory information and show that the Nurre family did indeed once own 1119 Main Street. But what about 1123 Main? I decided to dig into the Hamilton County Recorder's records.

The original parcel of land bounded by present-day Central Parkway, Walnut Street, 12th Street and Main Street is called Outlot 26. William McFarland purchased the whole outlot early in Cincinnati's history and subsequently sold pieces off over the years. He divided some into a subdivision, noted in the 1869 Map towards the beginning of this blog post. Another early Cincinnati real estate investor, John Riddle, purchased lots 9, 10 and 11 from McFarland. These remained in his estate until part, including 1119 and 1123 Main Street, were sold to investors, Francis Fortman and Miles Greenwood, who in turn sold them to Joseph Nurre. Nurre purchased them around 1857. Here is an image of the index books, which show the progress of these properties' ownership from 1857 until 1937.
Hamilton County Recorder Series Index Books
As you can imagine, researching in this depth takes time, but now we have a clear picture of these two buildings and their 157 years on Main Street. David Davis and his family eventually purchased both buildings and had his well-know business here for many years, even through the riots of 2001. After his death in 1963, his sons Bertram and Milton took over the business, but business and the health of the owners decline, and in 2004, Davis Furniture closed.
Cincinnati Enquirer; June 18, 2004; pg. A1&A14
According to the recent Cincinnati Enquirer article, the building was sold after David Furniture closed and repairs to the roof were poorly done, allowing water to seep into the buildings. Over the last 10 years, the buildings have suffered from neglect. Scott Stough, owner of the Hanke Building just across the street, purchased the buildings in May, 2013, but found the building in need of many repairs. The Stough family had recently asked the Historic Conservation Board for permission to demolish the buildings. Much outcry has come from the community to keep the buildings, as they contribute to the historic district of Over-the-Rhine. It was recently announced by the Cincinnati Preservation Association that the Stough's have decided to list the buildings for sale.
Here are some pictures of the buildings from the Davis Furniture era, as posted by VisuaLingual:

These are from The Writing on the Walls blog:

Hopefully a new owner can breathe life into these buildings, which have seen so much of Over-the-Rhine's changes over their 157 years of existence!

Friday, June 6, 2014

Longworth's Turrett Lofts

This building has caught my eye quite a few times when driving on Central Avenue and when a client asked if I could research the history of the building, I was excited to start digging.
Northwest corner of Central Avenue and Clark Street
While the Hamilton County Auditor says the year built is 1883, the actual construction most likely began in 1876, when Joseph Longworth and Catherine Longworth Anderson purchased the lot from Isaac Betts. Both of these names have a long connection to Cincinnati history, so let's dig a bit more on those...
Cincinnati Enquirer; Oct. 16, 1876; p. 6
Joseph Longworth (1813-1883) and Catherine Longworth Anderson (1815-1893) were the children of Nicholas Longworth (1783- 1863), who has been called the "Father of the American Wine Industry". Nicholas was born in 1783 and came to Cincinnati around 1804. He was a successful banker and also owned large parcel of land. He made his fortune by selling off parcels at prices that increased with the demand of the quickly growing city. Nicholas was fascinated with grape cultivation and believe Cincinnati's climate and land were an ideal place to experiment. Mount Adams was his laboratory, and he planted the hillsides with the Catawba grape. He was able to make a sparkling wine that was successful world-wide.
Rookwood on Grandin Road - Source
Joseph Longworth married Anna Maria Rives in 1841 and they lived at their estate on Grandin Road, which was called "Rookwood" due to the many black birds (rooks) that lived there. Their daughter, Maria Longworth Nichols Storer founded Rookwood Pottery, named after her childhood estate. Joseph and Anna's son, Nicholas Longworth II, was an Ohio Supreme Court Justice and their grandson, Nicholas Longworth served in the Ohio House and Senate as well as the US House of Representatives and  Speaker of the House from 1925 to 1931. In 1906, he married Alice Lee Roosevelt, daughter of President Theodore Roosevelt.

Catherine Longworth married Larz Anderson in 1834. Larz's father, Richard Clough Anderson served during the Revolutionary War. Their son, Nicholas Longworth Anderson, served during the Civil War as Brevet Major General.
Betts House, 416 Clark St.  - Source
Isaac Betts (1809-1891) is the son of William Betts (1763-1815), a veteran of the Revolutionary War, who first arrived in Cincinnati in 1800 and settled in the West End in 1802. He built his brick home in 1804 on present-day Clark Street on a plot of land which was originally 111 acres. William was not only a farmer, but also a brickmaker. His sons Smith, Oliver and Isaac continued the business after their father's death. The farm was subdivided in 1833, after William's 12th and youngest child reached the age of 21. Clark Street was named for William's mother, Elizabeth Clark Betts. You can read more about the Betts Family here.

1887 Sanborn Insurance Map - Source
The building at the corner of Central Avenue and Clark Street was completed by 1880, when the first tenants begin to appear in the city directories. Since this building expands nine addresses, the list is quite long and varied.
1880 Williams' City Directory - Source
Munro Mrs. C. A. (G. F. & Mrs. C. A. M.) h. n.w.c  Clark and Central Av
MUNRO G. F. & MRS. C. A., (Geo. F. M. & Mrs. C. A. M.) Palace Bath House for Gentlemen and Ladies; Plain, Cold, Hot Water and Medicated Vapor Baths; Ladies' Department Exclusive, 441 Central Av., n.w.c. Clark
Munro Geo. F. (G. F. & Mrs. C. A. M.) h. n.w.c. Clark and Central Av
Warner James D. leaf tobacco, 87 W. Front, h. n.w.c. Clark and Central Av

CAYLOR O. P. , Reporter Cincinnati Enquirer; Residence, 443 Central Av
Creager Gertie, h. 443 Central Av
Dee Lee G. trav. agt. h. 443 Central Av
Gwinner Lizzie, shirt mkr. wks. 443 Central av
Orth Mary, widow, h. 443 Central Av
Stuckenberg Benj. Z. salesman, 443 Central Av. h. Westwood Av., Fairmount
STUCKENBERG H . H., Manufacturer of Custom Shirts and Shirt Fronts, 443 Central Av.; Residence, Westwood Av., Fairmount
Wessel Harry D. clk. 443 Central Av. h. 524 John

Bowersock Anna C. widow, h. 445 Central Av
Maxwell Lawrence, jr. {King, Thompson & M.) atty. 82 W. 3d, h. 445 Central Av
Ormsby Mrs. E. millinery, 445 Central Av
Ormsby Sidney B. bar k. h. 445 Central Av
Ormsby Sidney M. club rooms, h. 445 Central Av
Roberts Thos. G. bds. 445 Central Av
Lloyd Henry T, liniment, 445 1/2 Central Av

Dowling Ellen, notions, 447 Central Av
Dowling Hanora, widow, h. 447 Central Av
Dowling Josie, saleslady, h. 447 Central Av
Dowling Patrick, tailor, h. 447 Central Av
Field Arthur P. conductor, h. 447 Central Av
FLEMING RUFUS, Associate Editor Cincinnati Times; Residence, 447 Central Av

Kauffer H. P. (Newton & K.) rooms 447 1/2 Central Av
NEWTON NELSON A., Manufacturer and Sole Owner of Newton's Patent Carriage Shaft and Pole Coupling and Dealer in Carriage Hardware, 447 1/2 Central Av.; Residence, Kalamazoo, Mich

Anderson Wm. H. cigars, 449 Central Av
Collins Ella E. saleslady, 152 W. 5th, h. 449 Central Av
Collins Mollie. h. 449 Central Av
Hopwood Chas. car. trimmer, h. 449 Central Av
Nesmith Constance, teacher, h. 449 Central Av
Nesmith Elise, saleslady, h. 449 Central Av
Nesmith Mrs. Elise, teacher of French, 449 Central Av
Nesmith Marie, music teacher, h. 449 Central Av
Young Peter P. railroad agt. h. 449 Central Av

Kilmer J. D. clk. 449 1/2 Central Av. bds. 399 W. Court
Peters C. M. manager Peters' Dash and Columbus Buggy Co. 449 1/2 Central Av

Peters' Dash and Columbus Buggy Co. 449 1/2 Central Av

As you can see, the building was a mix of commercial space on the lower floors and apartments above. Munro's Bath-House, at present day 1201 Central Avenue, had a tragic incident which occurred in 1888.
Cincinnati Enquirer; Jan 29, 1888; pg. 4
After the deaths of Joseph Longworth and Catherine Longworth Anderson, ownership transferred in the late 1890s to Catherine's daughter-in-law, Mary Douglas Anderson. By 1900, the bath-house is under new ownership after the Munros' moved to a new location. Tenants and businesses changed often over the 20 years:
Boning F. H. vice pres. The Central Bath Co. n.w.c. Clark and Central Av. h, 530 Everett
Huschle C. M. secy. The Central Bath Co. n.w.c. Clark and Central Av. h. 530 Everett
“Wm. pres. and treas. The Central Bath Co. n.w.c. Clark and Central Av. h. 530 Everett
Bath Houses - CENTRAL BATH CO., Wm. Huschle, President; Cabinet Vapor Bath 50 Cents; also, Turkish, Russian, Mercurial, Sulphur and Hot and Cold Water Baths, n.w.c Clark and Central Av

Grah Albert, cutlery, 1203 Central Av
Grinders - GRAH ALBERT, Grinder and Repairer of Scissors, Knives, Razors and Clippers, 1203 Central Av. opp. Cincinnati Hospital

Conner John E. adv. agt. Cincinnati Directory Office, h. flat 2, 1205 Central Av
“Katie, h. 1205 Central Av
“Lizzie E. dressmkr. 2446 Vine, h. 1205 Central Av
“Mary, wid. Edward, h. 1205 Central Av
Searcy Edward, cigars, 1205 Central Av. h. 1209 Central Av

Healy Wm. confec. 1207 Central Av

Beckel Minnie, (B. & Runge) 1209 Central Av. h, 1309 W. Liberty
Beckel & Runge, (Minnie B. & Emma R. R.) millinery, 1209 Central Av
Crist Chas. mechanical engineer, 318 Elm, h. 1209 Central Av
Giesseman Frank, patternmkr. h. 1209 Central Av
" Wm. clk, 1205 Central Av. h, 1209 Central Av
Maish August, watchman, h. 1209 Central Av
Runge Emma R. (Beckel & R.) 1209 Central Av.h. 17 W. Corry
Timmons E. J. secy, and treas. The Interstate Advertising Co. of Pittsburgh, room 65, 448 Main, h. 1209 Central Av

SEHN A. W., Proprietor New York Steam Dye Works, 1211 Central Av.; Residence, 20 E. Daniels
Steidinger Tena, clk. 1211 Central Av. h. 447 Bank

Bean J. Palmer, shipping clk, 16 E. 2d, h, 1213 Central Av
Brockman Edith, h. 1213 Central Av

Behling Mrs. Clara h. 1215 Central Av
Schmidt Louis, stoves, 1215 Central Av

Carruthers Sidney, wid. John, h. 1217 Central Av
Cottle Emma, rooms 1217 Central Av
Krueger Wm. trunk manuf. 1217 Central Av
Scollan Elizabeth, wid. Michael, h. 1217 Central Av

Stuart Maud, h. 1217 Central Av

1904-1930 Sanborn Insurance Map - Source
Over the next 40 years, the pattern stays much the same. Ownership changed from Mary D. Anderson to Union Savings Bank and then Samuel Shapiro in 1924. Tenants and businesses came and went, however, by 1940 it is evident the building has fewer of both:
Nedelman Hyman (Bessie) shoe repr 1203 Central av h3468 Knott

Felder Anthony (Emma) slsmn h1205 Central av
Hurst Edw (Anna) janitor h1205 Central av
“Ethel r1205 Central av
McLaughlin Geo r1205 Central av

Sanders Harry (Mary) cigars 1207 Central av h833 Hutchins av

McEnnis Edw waiter r1209 Central av
Racey Paul (June) lab r1209 Central av
Saunders Frank (Eileen) slsmn r1209 Central av
Sidal Wine & Import Co (Sidney Phillips) wines 1209 Central av
Stone Edw carp r1209 Central av
Wilkerson Lena E Mrs furn rms 429 Armory av h1209 Central av

Stern Furniture Co (Mrs Ida Stern) 1211 Central av

Burchett Pearl Mrs r1213 Central av apt 2
Hill Tennessee O (Alice) clnr Ficks Reed Co h1213 Central av 3d fl
Schumaker Thos lab r1213 Central av 3d fI
Shepard Jas (Carrie) lab h1213 Central av apt 1
Stortz Carl toolmkr r1213 Central av 3d fl

Carter Louis H (Lorraine) sta atndt (station attendant) Luther H Sharpe h 1217 Central av
Frazier Hubert clk T1217 Central av
Owens Jesse lab r1217 Central av
Powell Thelma mach opr r1217 Central av
Sparrow Jane Mrs smstrs Ficks Reed Co r1217 Central
“Mae r1217 Central av

By 1970 (above), three of the apartments are vacant and by 1980, the entire building is empty of tenants and businesses. For the next 17 years, the building is listed as vacant in the directories. In 1996, the building was purchased and renovated into apartments. In 2001, these apartments were changed to fifteen condominiums, called the Turrett Lofts. These condos are a popular choice for those wanting to live close to downtown in a beautiful, historic building.

1978 - Source
2014 - Digging Cincinnati History