|Joseph and Mary Piercy built 19 North Audubon in 1908. They sold it to the Jeffries family in 1911. (Pictured in 2017)|
On November 4, 1911, the Indianapolis Star recorded the sale of the Piercy home to Guy and Augustine Routiers Jeffries. The Jeffries family would remain in the house for over thirty years. Guy Jeffries had a storied career in the rail industry as he worked his way up from telegraph boy to becoming the General Superintendent of the Terre Haute, Indianapolis, & Eastern Traction Company. Thousands of local residents traveled in and out of the city of Indianapolis via traction lines and Mr. Jeffries managed those day-to-day operations. Like the Piercys, the Jeffries had one daughter, who never married. Lorene Jeffries attended nearby Butler University and remained close to her parents. Mrs. Jeffries did not work and was an active member of the Irvington Presbyterian Church. Newspaper articles from the 1920s reveal that Mr. Jeffries dined with Governors and Mayors and was a well-known figure in the city. He also joined the Hoosier Motor Club where he served as an officer. He must have known that automobiles would seal the doom of the traction companies because in 1931 he told a journalist for the Greenfield Daily Reporter, "People want individual transportation. They can run an automobile whether they have the money or not. If they can't buy gasoline and oil, they can borrow it." His prophesy eventually came true and the traction lines closed down in the mid-twentieth century.
Mrs. Jeffries died suddenly of stroke in their home in 1930. Mr. Jeffries passed away in 1941 leaving their only daughter, Lorene, in charge of the pretty home across the street from the Irvington Methodist Church. Diagnosed with heart disease in 1941, Miss Jeffries was advised to live with a friend for two weeks after a spell she experienced at home. Guinevere Ostrander, a neighbor at 323 North Audubon Road, invited her to convalesce at her residence until she felt better. Two weeks turned into thirty years as Miss Jeffries sold the home at 19 North Audubon Road and rented a room from the Ostrander family for the rest of her life until her passing in 1974.
|Guy Jeffries, of 19 North Audubon Road, submitted this photo of himself for a publication titled Fellow Citizens of Indianapolis in 1926|
Sources for the Piercy Family: "Joseph W. Piercy, Former Professor of Journalism at Indiana U., Succumbs," Indianapolis Star, November 24, 1943, 12; "Miss Piercy, I.U. Author, Will Retire," Indianapolis Star, May 25, 1966, 14; Obituary for Josephine Piercy, Indianapolis Star, February 16, 1995, 41.
Sources for Jeffries Family: "Guy K. Jeffries Resigns," Hancock Democrat, July 2, 1931, 4; Obituary for Guy Jeffries, Indianapolis Star, March 28, 1941, 16; Obituary for Mrs. Jeffries, Indianapolis Star, September 29, 1930, 12. Information about Lorene Jeffries, Interview with Nancy Ostrander, February 9, 2017.