#WheeLove -Wheeling Island Instameet
This May, the Wheeling Young Preservationists are celebrating the benefits and assets of our local historic districts and landmarks (#LoveYourHD). Each week throughout Preservation Month we will award prizes to encouarge the exploration of our favorite historic districts.
Please upload your photos to Instagram, Facebook or Twitter and use the hashtags below to be eligible to win awesome local prizes each week! In addition to our prizes, the National Trust for Historic Places has given Wheeling our own local version of #ThisPlaceMatters! When you use #ThisPlaceMattersWWV and you upload a photo of your favorite local building/landmark you'll be helping WYP compete with other Young Preservationists organizations across the country. The winning YP's will receive funding from the National Trust for Historic Places!
Our official meet-up will be held on Sunday May 1st at 2pm on Wheeling Island. Please join us for a group photo (#ThisPlaceMatters swag provided!) on South Front Street- that little vacant lot just as you cross the Suspension Bridge. From there, we encourage you to explore Wheeling Island using our Jauntful map to help guide your journey.
Here are the hashtags you'll need for week 1 (May 1-7)
John S. Naylor House: 37 South Penn Street
This home was built for John S. Naylor, one of Wheeling’s most prominent businessmen of the 1890’s. The John S. Naylor Co. was one of the largest wholesale dry goods houses in the state at the time this home was built. selling velvets, woolens, worsteds, and dress linens.
John was a WV commissioner and was chosen to represent the the state at the Chicago Worlds Fair (the Columbian Exposition) in 1893.
When contracts were signed for the construction of this home in 1891, the total cost was $4000. The design was prepared by Wheeling architect, M. F. Giesey. Mr. Giesey also designed the L.S. Good Masion (now Good Mansion Wines), St. Stephens Reformed Church, St. Johns Reformed Church, Warwood Fire Department and the Central Parish School.
PHILLIPS-MCLURE HOUSE: 203 SOUTH FRONT STREET
Daniel Zane built this house over the years 1853 - 1856 for his daughter Anne Elizabeth Zane Phillips, wife of steamboat builder and Southern sympathizer Hanson Phillips. It was purchased in 1864 by John McLure, Jr., a noted riverboat captain and steamboat builder and a delegate to the first Wheeling statehood convention. The appearance of the house was changed dramatically from its original Federal four over four design to the current Classical Revival look during its ownership by the McLure family, from 1864 to 1901.
The day Virginia seceded from the Union, Captain McLure was in command of the riverboat Eunice, headed from Louisville back to Wheeling. Upon reaching Cincinnati, McLure is said to have gone ashore, purchasing numerous American flags and hoisting them from stem to stern. Despite threats from secessionists along the route, he vowed that he was a Union man and would die by that flag. Loudly ringing the ship’s bell, he made it back to Wheeling with every flag flying.
McLure then took the Eunice south again where it became the flagship of twelve troop- and supply-carrying steamers on the Kanawha River. He later traveled to Tennessee where he helped escort Federal troops up and down the Cumberland River.
After the war, McLure was a very vocal supporter of Wheeling and was the captain in charge of moving the capital from Charleston to Wheeling in 1875.
400 South Front Street
This home was built prior to 1889 for Charles W. Franzheim, a prominent citizen of Wheeling, and president of the Wheeling Pottery Company, the first pottery works established in Wheeling. He also served as president of the Riverside Pottery Company which was incorporated in April, 1899 and from 1889-1893 was the president and general manager of the Warwick China Comapny.
Mr. Franzheim was born in Wheeling, in February, 1853, and is a son of George W. And Mary A. (Hornung) Franzheim.Mr. Franzheim. Mr. Franzheim is also vice-president of the German Bank of Wheeling, vice-president of the Franklin Fire Insurance Company of Wheeling, trustee of the Mutual Savings Bank, and president of the Vance Faience Company, which is located at Tiltonville and is exclusively engaged in the manufacture of art goods. Our subject graduated as a civil engineer in 1872, but has always been engaged in the pottery business.
Charles W. Franzheim was the eldest brother of notable Wheeling Architect Edward Bates Franzheim.
404 South Front Street
The Harry C. and Jessie F. Franzheim House is an exceptional example of Shingle Style architecture. This home was built by Wheeling Architect Edward Bates Franzheim, Harry and Jessie’s younger brother.
Edward Bates Franzheim is best known for designing the Virginia Apartments, the Court Theatre, the Rogers Hotel, the Hazel Atlas building and Vance Memorial Church.
Isaac Irwin Residence: 201 North Front Street
One of the oldest remaining homes on the Island, this Greek Revival style home was built for Isaac Irwin c1853 shortly after the Wheeling Suspension Bridge opened the Island for developments.
Mr. Irwin resided in this home with his wife, Amy Wiley Irwin, the daughter of Rev. William Wiley of First Presbyterian Church, both are buried at Mt. Wood cemetery. You can find their obelisk monument at the southern crest of the hill.
Isaac Irwin is the son of William Irwin, a Revolutionary was Captain and one of the first Blacksmiths to settle in Wheeling. William Irwin served as the Mayor of Wheeling briefly in 1818.
200 North Front Street
Deed records indicate that the lot on which this house stands was transferred from Daniel List to real estate agent Robert S. Irwin in 1872 and then to Samuel P. Hildreth a year later. In 1875, Ophelia Rodgers purchased the lot for $2000, the equivalent of about $40,000 today.
The first resident found in city directory listings at this location (identified as 100 N. Front Street at the time) was John V. L. Rodgers in 1896. Rodgers (1836-1914) was the husband of Ophelia Rodgers. He had served as a member of the Shriver Grays, the Wheeling-based Confederate unit, during the Civil War. Service records indicate that he enrolled for service on May 17, 1861 and was mustered in at Harpers Ferry on May 26. He listed his occupation at the time as shoemaker. Service records also show that he lost his gun during the first battle of Bull Run. By early 1863, Rodgers, along with most of the surviving Shriver Grays, transferred to Company D, 36th Battalion, Virginia Cavalry. In this unit, Rodgers was promoted to 1st Sergeant on July 1, 1863. He was captured in Knoxville, TN on December 18, 1863. He was sent first to the Union prison camp at Camp Chase, near Columbus, OH on January 1, 1864 and was then transferred to Rock Island, IL a few weeks later. He was released on October 6, 1864 – remarks “Joined USA.”
1919, nee Murfin) remained in the house until her death five years later. The 1910 census indicates that a housekeeper, housekeeper’s son, and John’s sister also lived at the same address.
The next residents were August W. and Gladys Hoff Forsch, from 1919 until 1924. Forsch (1884-1961) was a salesman of wholesale and retail meats. The 1920 census also shows two sons and two daughters at this address: Edith (age 7), Rex (age 5), Junior (age 4), and newborn Betty Jane.
Alex and Elizabeth Salvatori were the next owners, from 1924 to 1942. Italian immigrant Salvatori (1888-1959) founded the Peoples Federal Savings and Loan Bank – later known as Fed One and now United. His name appears on a plaque on the current bank building at the corner of 12th and Main Streets. During their ownership, other residents are also listed at the same address, suggesting that the home was divided into at least two living units.
Alphonso and Shirley Duff purchased the home from the Salvatoris in 1942. Duff (1890-1946) was an inspector for the US Post Office. Although the Duffs retained ownership until 1951, it appears that they lived elsewhere during the later years, and the house was divided into two apartments.
In 1951, David J. and Grace Trussell McSwain, and Howard C. and Dorothy McSwain purchased the property. David McSwain (1881-1969) was a constable. His college-educated son Howard (1815-1986) served in the US Army during World War II and then was a salesman for Wheeling Electric. Following Howard’s death, his widow Dorothy (Dot) continued to live in the house until she moved to an assisted living facility.
203 North Front Street
This home was occupied by the widow of John S. Lukens, Captain of Company K, 15th WV infantry for the Union Army. She shared this home with her daughter Kate, her husband Andrew T. Sweeney and their daughter Eleanor.
While residing here, Andrew T. Sweeney was the mayor of Wheeling (1899-1905) and also the sherif of Ohio County for four the years prior to his death in 1918. Andrew was the son of notable Andrew J. Sweeney, who also served several terms as Mayor of Wheeling and was the founder of Wheeling Electric. You may also recognize his name from the cast iron store fronts on both River City Restaurant and Wheeling Coffee and Spice.
Eleanor achieved her own fame through the American Kennel Club (1918) as a breeder of champion bloodhounds while in residence at this address.
310 North Front Street
This lovely Second Empire style residence, with red brick and sandstone coining was originally built as the first WV Governor's mansion, however the first governor never actually resided here.
The historic information on 203 South Front Street and 200 North Front Street was provide by the Friends of Wheeling. If you've enjoyed what you've read today please take a look at their website for much more information, opportunities to tour some of Wheeling's most historic properties and for information on becoming a member of their organization. You can also follow them on Facebook here.