Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Living in a Dream Home--1913

George and Mary Terrill along with their three daughters, Mabel, Faye, and Norma moved into 5631 University Avenue in 1912.  The Terrills likely heard that Henry Earl, the owner of the home, was ill and on the way to Michigan to spend the last years of his life with his family.  As the Earl family began to get the house and property ready for auction they rented it to the Terrills for one year.  George Terrill, who ran his own securities and insurance company was just starting to see his business thrive.  Since the Terrills dwelled at 302 South Audubon Road in 1911, they would have noticed all of the activity going on at the Earl property located across the street from the Irving Circle Park.  For one year, the Terrills dwelled in the now iconic Irvington home and took these photos in winter of 1913. The Polk's Indianapolis City Directory reveals that one daughter, Faye, a talented musician, taught piano in the house.

In the summer of 1913, the beautiful home went on the auction block.  Lew Shank, a local resident and auctioneer, described the property in the Indianapolis Star as:

     The opportunity of a lifetime to buy one of the best located and most beautiful homes in Irvington on June 19, 1913 at 3 PM...No. 5631 University Avenue, the residence of Dr. Earl, who is going to move to Michigan. This is a ten room brick house, cut stone foundation, attic, basement, city water, gas electric lights, slate roof, with bath and furnace in first class condition.  This lot faces on three streets, Audubon Road, University Avenue, and Burgess Avenue--about two thirds of an acre, large trees, also cherry, apple, and peach trees.  

It is unknown if the Terrills attempted to buy the house, but if they did then they lost out to Wallace and Ellie Payne, who moved into 5631 University Avenue in 1913.  The Payne family added a covered porch, something that had not existed on the house until then. The Terrills moved out and purchased 315 South Audubon Road and remained there until finally buying their dream home in 1920 at 410 South Emerson Avenue, a large brick Second Empire style house.

Provenance of the photos:  Amanda Browning, the author of the Horner House blog, traveled to North Carolina to meet Gail Anderson, a descendant of the Terrills.  Amanda's mission was to find photos of her own house at 410 South Emerson Avenue (Horner House).  In the process of discovering incredible photos of her property, Amanda noticed images of 5631 University Avenue in the scrapbooks.  More from this collection will appear on the Horner House blog in the coming months so stay tuned as Amanda reveals more incredible images.  (hornerhouseindy.blogspot.com)  

5631 University after freezing rain and snow storm on January 4, 1913; Note that the Craftsman-era front porch had not yet been placed on the house!

Winter Beauty:  5631 University Avenue in January of 1913.  Photo taken by a member of the Terrill family who dwelled in the "Castle House" for just one year.  Note that 262 South Audubon Road has not been yet been constructed.  

Close up of 5631 University Avenue in the winter of 1913

1 comment:

  1. This is a beautiful home that looks very well built. I am vaguely familiar with programs like this, but am excited to hear about what they're actually up to in my town.
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