Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Before Ruth Lyons Moved In

This is a long overdue blog post! I hope you enjoy reading the history of this house, mostly known for being the home of Ruth Lyons and her husband Herman Newman. When this house went on the market earlier this year, I was surprised to see the year built is listed as 1865! So I had to dig more into the history of this home.
5205 Colerain Avenue - Photo from Motz Real Estate
Let's go back in time to some historic maps. This is often the easiest way to trace back ownership of land and to see if a building on the old maps matches up with a present day map. I used the CAGIS maps to determine the property's Township, Range and Section (original divisons of the Symmes Purchase) so I could use the same information on the old maps.
CAGIS Map  - Blue dot is location of the property today.
The oldest map for Hamilton County that I have been able to locate is from 1847. This map shows a house in approximately the same location owned by H. Kendall.
1847 Map of Hamilton County, Ohio by attorney William D Emerson, C. S. Williams and Sons publisher (No. 5 W. 4th St.), includes property owner names, inset maps and detailed legend
To verify this information, I went to the Recorder's deed and mortgage files. The first series of the deed and mortgage index books from 1789 to 1859 are shown below.
Hamilton County Recorder
This shows the transfers from the original Symmes Purchase down to Henry Kendall, the same name on the 1847 map. The structure on the map could be the house standing today, but there is no concrete proof of this from the records I found. The map below from 1856 shows H. Kendall as the owner, but there are no markings for structures.
1856 Hamilton County by A.W. Gilbert
Hamilton County Recorder
1869 Titus Map
The second series of deeds also matches the 1869 Titus Map, which now shows that Michael and Mary Cahill own the property and the small black square in front the 5.15 (acres) could be the house still standing today.

Hamilton County Recorder
1884 Map of Hamilton County, Ohio, by Geo. Moessinger & Fred. Bertsch
The third series has quite a few transfers and leases, so by the time of the 1884 map, Joseph H. Wolf owned the land but had rented it to Allen Haisley in 1883 and sold it to him in 1886.

Hamilton County Recorder
 In 1888, Allen Haisley purchase the lot to the north of his property from Martha Riddle, bringing his land to almost 15 acres.

Hamilton County Recorder
 Allen died in April of 1922 and the property transferred to his daughter, Nettie Eckoff. Nettie had married Joseph Eckhoff and their family lived in the house until they sold to Alice Taylor in 1946.

1920 Census
1930 Census
1940 Census
Hamilton County Recorder
Alice Taylor sold the property to Herman Newman and Ruth Lyons just two years later in May of 1948. The following article describes their home:
Cincinnati Enquirer; October 8, 1950
Ruth and her husband updated the property and their decor was featured in the April 1958 issue of American Home Magazine. 
Photo from Motz Real Estate
Photo from Motz Real Estate
Cincinnati Enquirer; September 21, 1968
The current owners purchased the property in 1968 and after 48 years, are ready for the home to have a new owner. In a recent interview for WCPO, they hope the home can find a new family to love and appreciate the home's history. More photos from the listing real estate company can be seen below.


  1. Can you find this info from the recorder's office online or do you have to go to the recorder's office?

  2. Yes, they are available on-line. Just click on the link below any of the records above.

  3. I love it, paneling and everything. Would love to own it!

  4. Beautiful and gracious, just like Ms. Lyons!


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