Wednesday, May 29, 2013

One of Oldest Houses Razed at Dubois and 13th --1959

Lawrence County News April 2, 1959 Building Removal Discloses Much History
Dismantling of Swinehart home at Dubois and 13th streets 
Reveals Logs used in Construction; 
One of the Oldest buildings

The razing of the old Swinehart property at the corner of Dubois and 13th streets brings up quite a bit of history in connection with one of the oldest houses in Lawrenceville.

It is evident from the abstract of the property that the house was built sometime between 1858 and 1864 making it about 100 years old. The removal of the outer covering discloses that the cells are of hewed timbers, and that much of the studding  is of hewed poles still wearing the bark.

The building has been remodeled several times, now having a good concrete block foundation, and an imitation brick siding. Since concrete blocks didn’t come into general use until about the turn-of-the-century, the building was probably raised to its present level after it came into the ownership of the Tom Watts family in July of 1906.

That part of the city was platted on July 21, 1856 by Rachel Bandolet  and the lot sold to Martha and William Meeks the next month for $50. In December of the same year the lot was sold to Vigo Bandolet  for $50, and on May 26 1858 to Nathan Huff. On February 11, 1864 it was sold to Mary M. Quick for $900, indicating that a house has been erected and 10 years later it went to Daniel Swinehart for $800.

It is the remembrance of older residents that the house was built by his sons, all of whom were good carpenters. Since Mary Quick was a daughter of Daniel Swinehart, it is likely that Daniel and his boys built the house for the daughter.

The house was occupied by the Swinehart and Quicks until it was purchased by Carrie B. Watts on July 10, 1906, A. L. Quick living in the house at the time. Subsequent renters have been J. U. Cottingham, Frank E. Smith, Ham Mills, and J. W. Ellison.

Upon the death of Mrs. Watts the property came into the hands of her son Raymond Watts. During the long illness of Mrs. Ellison it was impossible to redecorate or repair the building and it got in such condition that Watts felt that a remodeling job would cost more than the place was worth  so he sold it to his sister and husband, Mr. and Mrs. A H. Worner. They also figured that rebuilding was too costly and decided that razing the building is best at this time. So, the lot is being completely cleared.

There are older houses in Lawrenceville, but not many. The building recently taken over by the Masonic Lodge was erected in 1854 and it is thought that the house occupied by Mrs. Bertha Seitzinger at 810 10th St., and one on W. Jefferson St. are older.

The house at 810 10th St. formally faced on Jefferson and was owned by W. W. Fahrner and his family. That corner was purchased by Ira Calvert who moved the house to the rear and erected a new home. The frame of the house at 810 is of logs, but has been covered with siding so that it is a rather modern home.