Sunday, January 27, 2013

Langdon House - Columbia Tusculum

Source
Another home on the National Register of Historic Places, this one is located on Eastern Avenue in the Columbia Tusculum neighborhood of Cincinnati. It was originally built in 1855 for Dr. Wesley Elstun but it was purchased in 1865 by Dr. Henry Archer Langdon. Its architectural style is called Steamboat Gothic and is believed to be one of the last remaining ones of this style in Cincinnati.

Dr. Langdon was born May 28, 1839, in Linwood, Ohio. He was the son of James Davenport Langdon and Sarah Phelps Langdon. He attended the Miami Medical College in Cincinnati and in 1862, he joined the Union Army to serve during the Civil War. That August, he was appointed as Assistant Surgeon to the 79th Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry. By February 1863, he was a Full Surgeon and served until the end of the war.

1869 Titus Map - Source
When Dr. Langdon returned to Cincinnati, he went into practice with Dr. Elstun and eventually bought the practice from Elstun. including the house and the small outbuilding used as his medically office. Dr. Langdon married Emeline Corbly in 1867 at her father's home in Mount Washington. The had five children:
Chester Stebbin Langdon (5 Sept 1867 - 20 Jul 1868)
Clara Langdon (5 May 1869 - 7 Dec 1874)
Anna Dawson Langdon (9 Sept 1870 - 21 Oct 1874)
Thomas Langdon (22 Jun 1874 - 4 Oct 1874)
William Langdon (22 Jun 1874 - 9 Feb 1955)

1870 Census - Ancestry.com

As you can see, only one of their five children survived until adulthood. Emeline passed away in 1874, just two weeks after giving birth to twins. In December 1875, Dr. Langdon married Sydnie Edward, and she became William's mother. Just five months after their marriage, Dr. Henry A. Langdon passed away from a brain hemorrhage on May 13, 1876. (Source)


Cincinnati Enquirer; May 16, 1876; ProQuest Historical Newspapers

Obituary.
THE LATE DR. H. A. LANGDON.
RESOLUTIONS PASSED BY THE MIAMI MEDICAL SOCIETY.
Whereas, Our friend and professional brother, Henry Langdon, has been removed from our midst by the hand death ; therefore be it
Resolved, That the Miami Medical Society has lost in o deceased friend one of its most useful and distinguished members, and the medical profession of Cincinnati one of its brightest ornaments.
Resolved, That in his sincere sympathy with suffering, in thorough and scientific medical knowledge, and the calm, strong spirit which at all times impelled him fearlessly to do his da Dr. Langdon possessed in a most uncommon degree those high qualities which makes a physician invaluable to a community
Resolved, That to the community which will vainly seek replace him, to the friends and relatives who have lost him. hereby respectfully tender our heartfelt sympathy, and min join our regrets with theirs.
W. W. Highlands. M. D.. Pres
George Conner, M. D., Secit
Sydnie and William moved to live with her family. The home remained in the Langdon family and became a rental property.
Click on the following to enlarge 
1880 Census - Ancestry.com
1900 Census - Ancestry.com
1910 Census - Ancestry.com
1920 Census - Ancestry.com
1930 Census - Ancestry.com
1940 Census - Ancestry.com
When William Langdon became an adult, he also studied medicine at Miami College and joined the Marine Corps. He worked as a doctor in Mount Washington. William's son, Henry H. Langdon, also became a doctor, served his country in World War I in France and at the time of his death in 1937 at the age of 40, was Chief of Staff at Cincinnati General Hospital.

When William passed away in 1955, the home was sold to private owners until 1966 when it was purchased by the Miami Purchase Association, predecessor to the Cincinnati Preservation Association. In 1969, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places and plans were made to remove the doctor's office building to the Heritage Village at Sharon Woods Park, where it still stands today.

Langdon Medical Office at the Heritage Village - Google Images
The Miami Purchase Association sold the home in 1976 to a couple who made plans to restore it to its former glory. Since then, other owners have maintained or improved the home to the beautiful place it is today.
Source

Source


7 comments:

  1. The house was never a funeral home? Maybe just an urban legend or maybe an ancillary use of the dr.'s practice, but there used to be a 2nd story door to nowhere on the rear of the house. I had heard it was where they used to lower the bodies out. My back yard abuts theirs, and i always thought it was so cool to see a door on the 2nd floor w no porch, stairs etc. (There was 3 stairs down to the door from inside--i toured it when it was for sale--& the door/frame looked original, so i dont think it was a later modification.) Unfortunately, last owners covered it up completely. Any thoughts?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did find a listing in 1936 for Charles Peek, who was a funeral director. So maybe the urban legend isn't totally unfounded. It is possible the second floor door maybe went to a fire escape since the house was home to more than one family over the years according to the census records. Another possibility is there was an addition that had been removed. These are just my speculations!

      Delete
    2. Charles Peek was my grandfather. He worked for Weil Brothers Funeral Home for many years, but did have his own funeral home, briefly, sometime during the 1930's. Unfortunately, my father died seven years ago, so I can't show him this article. However, my aunt is still living and may be able to tell me how long she and her parents lived in this house.

      Delete
  2. Thanks! Still think its sad the new owners covered it up cuz had that unique charm. Shouldve just sealed it IMO. But guess they didnt like it. Appreciate the info & love your site!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'm the current owner. I actually have documentation that the door was a modification when the house was a 4-family during the war. In fact, the whole back section wasn't part of the original house in 1855. The kitchen and rooms above it were added between 1890-1910. The original kitchen was likely in the basement. I was on the board of Cincinnati Preservation during the renovation and had everything approved before adding the kitchen window on the back and repairing the board-and-batten siding.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How wonderful that you are the owner and that you undertook such historically correct renovations! Your home is beautiful and our community is richer due to your respect for its history. Thank you.

      Julie Rimer

      Delete
  4. I'm the current owner. I actually have documentation that the door was a modification when the house was a 4-family during the war. In fact, the whole back section wasn't part of the original house in 1855. The kitchen and rooms above it were added between 1890-1910. The original kitchen was likely in the basement. I was on the board of Cincinnati Preservation during the renovation and had everything approved before adding the kitchen window on the back and repairing the board-and-batten siding.

    ReplyDelete