Saturday, September 29, 2012

Gorham A. Worth House in Mount Auburn

I came across this home while looking through a collection of photo from the Cincinnati Preservation Association. I had never heard of this home and wanted to learn more.

Gorham A. Worth House - Auburncrest Avenue, Mount Auburn, 2010 - Source
This may well be the oldest home in Mount Auburn. Built circa 1819, it predates the Baum-Longworth-Sinton-Taft House (Taft Museum of Art) by one year.

Gorham A. Worth was born in 1783 in Hudson, New York. He worked as a banker and in 1817, came to Cincinnati to be the cashier of the newly formed United States Branch Bank. When he built his home, Mount Auburn was then known as "Key's Hill" in honor of James Key, whose home was on Bigelow Street. Worth did not stay long in Cincinnati, leaving for New York before 1825 and he passed away in 1856.

But Worth's contributions to Cincinnati history were enormous. He wrote "Recollections of Cincinnati" in 1851, noting his trip down the Ohio River with William Henry Harrison and descriptions of early Cincinnati and some of his good friends, including Nicholas Longworth, Jacob Burnet, General Findlay, Dr. Daniel Drake, Martin Baum, John Piatt, General Lytle, among many others. Luckily this book is available on-line, so try to take some time to read it.

After Worth's departure, the home was purchased by Robert McGregor, for whom McGregor Avenue is named. McGregor was born in 1804 in Scotland and it seems he was independently wealthy.
1850 US Census - Ancestry.com
In the 1850 Census, McGregor's occupation is "unknown" but the value of his real estate was $16,000.
1860 US Census - Ancestry.com
By 1860, McGregor's occupation is listed as "gentleman" and his real estate was then worth $200,000 and his personal estate worth $2,000. About this time, the "wings" were added to both sides of the main house. McGregor passed away in 1866 of cholera and is buried in the family plot at Spring Grove Cemetery. His descendants sold the land, breaking them into parcels for development.
1869 Titus Map - http://www.davidrumsey.com/
By 1869, Truman B. Handy, a builder and real estate developer, had purchased the home. He only lived here for a short time and by 1880, had sold it to Jacob Krouse. Krouse was born in 1824 in Germany. He emigrated to the United States in 1846 and married his wife, Caroline, in 1851 in a double wedding with his best friend and business partner, Louis Stix. They, along with other family members and partners, ran Stix, Krouse & Company, a very successful clothing business. The Krouse family remained in the home until Jacob's death in 1905. The next year, Caroline sold the home to Guy Ward Mallon.

1904-1930 Sanborn Insurance Map - Source
Note the Worth House in the middle.
Auburncrest Avenue was once called Krouse Avenue, named after Jacob Krouse.
Guy Ward Mallon (1864-1933), "one of the founders of Cincinnati’s City Charter, creator of Ohio’s Australian-ballot system, and author of “A Manual on Elections” (1892)." Source 
He lived in this home until approximately 1930, when he built a smaller home just to the south at 240 McGregor Avenue.

Samuel J M Allen, a professor of experimental physics at the University of Cincinnati became the owner around 1930. It remained in his possession until 1952, when it was purchased by Irvin Yeaworth, a Presbyterian minister. A list of owners from Allen until 1988 can be seen below on the ownership card from the Hamilton County Auditor's records. 
Ownership Card - Hamilton County Auditor
It is presently a private residence. When I stumbled upon the picture from the Cincinnati Preservation Association  I found they had also taken some wonderful detail and interior pictures, which are below. Click on them to enlarge.












5 comments:

  1. Friends of mine were the former owners of this home until about 15 years ago. Federal architecture is my favorite and what a delight it was to be inside this gorgeous home. Indeed, may be one of the oldest....the doors, the entry hall and staircase (as in photo) are like touching time, the cooking hearth....the spindled staircase took my breath away.

    I was an active member of CPA until recent family illnesses stole my time....in the past I've researched myself here in Cincinnati. I know how to go do the searches, census, deeds...sleuthing I love. I'm most curious....Do you do this as a hobby and have a day job? How do you do it all? I'm impressed. Thank you.

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    1. I have a day job, part-time. I am also a student at Xavier University, a wife and mom. This is a hobby but also get paid occasionally for research projects. I just love researching Cincinnati history!

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  2. Just saw this article. Jacob Krouse was my great grandfather. My grandmother grew up in the house. We have some items that might be of interest. Who should we contact?

    Barbara Heldman

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    1. Please contact me at diggingcincihistory@gmail.com
      I will try to put you in contact with the owners.

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  3. Yeaworth's were my grandparents, of the 5 kids growing up in the house during this time only 2 remain alive (several spouses still alive), none local to Cincinnati. Most of the grandchildren are still alive and a couple still live in the general Cincinnati area. You may also find a Tom and Rosely Yeaworth that lived down the street on Mcgregor

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