Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The H. O. Wurmser House: another (groan) mystery!

Take a good look at this house at 1348 West Erie (that's currently for sale down by where West Erie and 5th street meet by the Big "V"). It's ground zero for the latest mystery to occupy the minds (and blogs) of Lorain history buffs.

In a nutshell, here is the story, which originated over on Loraine Ritchey's weblog.

From 1903 Lorain Souvenir book
Famed Lorain architect H. O. Wurmser (that's him at left) lived in this house until he died in 1933. This house replaced Wurmser's other house at this location, which was destroyed by the 1924 Lorain Tornado.

The problem? The Ohio Historical Society says that the house shown above dates to possibly the 1840s.

So the question is: Is this house really that old and did it get moved here from somewhere else by Wurmser – or is the Ohio Historical Society simply wrong and the house merely dates from 1924?

Rest assured, the creme de la creme of Lorain's local history buffs are working on this (contacting the OHS, Wurmser relatives, etc.). But they can use some help!

So if any of you old-timers from that neighborhood remember anything about how the house got there, be sure to leave a comment here or contact Loraine Ritchey over on her blog.

And while I'm at it, I'll add my own personal request for help again. If anyone knows when that Big V first got installed down there at the nearby park – or when it was first knocked down by a car – please contact me.


Ken said...

Hard to believe an architect would buy an old house and move it there instead of designing it himself.

Dan Brady said...

I agree. Moving a house there would only seem to make sense if it was a very special house – and that one doesn't seem to fit that description. Hopefully the OHS can shed some light on their report about the house being so old.

Lisa said...

Unless they've finally owned up to listing it, that house does not appear on the HH website. If it's for sale, nobody is claiming to be the realtor.

Does anybody know if OHS examines the insides of houses before they give the approximate age or do they base their opinion solely on what they see outside?

Lisa said...

^ that's me, tripping over Blogger's captcha

Owen Dabek said...

Dan, I just saw this article about the Wurmser house on the Morning Journal's website.


Anonymous said...

This house is currently for sale for $30,000 by Ken Myers - Trinity / Remax. I showed it to an investor a few months back. Pretty rough inside. It will take a boat load of money to make it livable.