727 South Limestone Ave.
The Charles A Gasser House
The Gasser House was constructed circa 1916, for Charles and Caroline Gasser. Charles emigrated to the United States from Baden Germany around 1887 and located in Springfield shortly thereafter. Upon arriving in Springfield, Charles attended Nelson’s Business College before entering the wholesale and retail grocery business. When this stylish Craftsman Bungalow was constructed, Charles was retiring from his grocery business on nearby Clifton Avenue and had begun working in real estate. Caroline was a native of Springfield, although of German descent. She and Charles likely met at the German speaking Zion Lutheran Church, where they were members. Marrying in 1895, they would go on to raise three daughters. Caroline died in 1942, followed seven years later by Charles. Their youngest daughter Erna Gasser continued living at the house while working as an elocution teacher.
741 South Limestone Ave.
The David and Mary West House
At first glance you won’t be able to miss the carved and molded ornamentation. The
sunburst design on the gable and the fish scale surface just below are only the
beginning of the Victorian delights this “lady” wants to show you… there is much
waiting inside. Built in 1886 by David and Mary West, with over 2900 square feet of
living space, this home has provided many families with elegant shelter. There are
five remaining fireplaces inside and they still possess the original painted soapstone
mantels. Beautiful oak flooring highlight rooms adorned by intricately milled pine
trim and crown molding of white oak. The front porch was completely replaced in
2000. Hundreds of board feet of cedar and poplar were custom milled to bring the
facade to original splendor. This house doesn’t show its age as much as it honors its
806 South Fountain Ave.
The W.A. Scott House
Built in 1882 by William A. Scott, a distinguished member of the Clark County Bar
Association, this house is an example of the Stick-Eastlake Style, popularized in the
1870’s by English aesthete Charles Locke Eastlake, whose designs for future were
imported to America and applied to architecture as incised, cutout and turned
ornament. The tall paired windows, the mixed use of narrow horizontal and vertical
siding, the cutout ornament and lathe-turned posts of the second floor porch, and
the overlay of the peak all characterize the Eastlake Stick style. George R. Prout,
one-time President of James Leffel and Company, lived here with his family from
1903 to 1919, when they moved to the Asa Bushnell House on East High Street.
807 South Fountain Ave.
The Clara F. Horn House
William and Albert Horn, Springfield carpenters, completed this house on the then
sparsely populated South Market Street in 1869. It is likely that the original front
and side gabled section of the house was in the Carpenter Gothic Style, although
later additions and alterations have made the house appear more Vernacular. Their
mother, Clara, the head of the household, was widowed several years prior when the
family lived in Champaign County. Annie, aged 19, would have likely helped her
mother around the house while Oliver, aged 13, attended school. The Horn Family
remained close through the years, possibly due to financial difficulties. After leaving
school, Oliver worked locally as a molder while his brothers both had short stints at
Whitely, Fassler & Kelly manufacturing the Champion Reaper. Leaving the factory,
Albert began Albert D. Horn & Company, dealers in coal and wood. Their
advertisements stated that they had “the best grades of Jackson, Hocking, and
Anthracite Coal at the lowest prices,” and their store on Washington was a short
walk from the house. Albert married and began raising his family at the house
around 1879. In 1883, he and William attempted to use their brief experience at
Whitely, Fassler & Kelly to begin Horn Brothers, an agricultural implement firm.
Around 1887, after the failure of Horn Brothers, most of the Horn family left
Springfield to begin farming in Tennessee. The back of the house and the carriage
house were added in 1911.
1019 South Fountain Ave.
The William A. Straley House
1019 S. Fountain Avenue is an example of a Victorian Italianate brick home. Built on
the Silas H. Gard Plat sometime in 1883, the house began its most recent
transformation in 1998. By that time, the house had been turned into five
apartments and had survived a long and storied past. Originally addressed 409 S.
Market St., the property was sold to William S. Straley on June 26, 1883 for $1375.
However, in foreclosure, the Sheriff took the home in October of 1885 and Straley
was fined $621 (foreclosure and court fees). The home was later sold at Sheriff’s
Auction to Christian C. Fund (and wife) for $5367 in December of 1885. The home
was sold a number of times for as little as “$1.00 and other valuable considerations”.
It seems as if 1019 S. Fountain was a single family home until 1934. On November
19, 1934 a woman named Lea Poling sold the property to Merchants & Mechanic
Savings and Loan Association of Springfield, Ohio. This transfer was probably a
major changing point for 1019 S. Fountain Ave. This time period corresponds with
most of the renovations that converted the single-family home into five apartments.
Newspapers found in walls and around electric conduit echo that time period. This
probably marks the time of many electric and plumbing upgrades as well. This
home is a work in progress. It exhibits fantastic Heart Pine woodwork and floors.
All of the woodwork on the main floor of this home has been refinished to show its
original beauty. Although the existing floor plan is not original, it is much closer
than it has been for over 65 years. You will also note that the backyard includes a
patio garden and carriage house both of which were built by the Babians.
1025 South Fountain Ave.
The Slack-Urguhart House
Among the then rapidly developing South Market Street in 1886, Charles and Lillie
Slack constructed this simple Queen Anne house. Charles grew up along the street,
living at 635 South Market Street with his family before building this house. He
worked in partnership with his father Peter and brother Alfred in P. Slack & Sons,
dealers in guns pistols, fishing tackle, and bicycles. His father emigrated from
England in 1851 as a gunsmith and settled in Springfield three years later. Upon
Peter Slack’s death in 1891 the company changed its name to P. Slack’s Son and
continued to operate as a gun dealer at its West Main Street location. On March 20,
1898, Charles Slack died unexpectedly from sudden heart failure super-induced by
typhoid fever. His death came as a great shock to the community. Lillie and their
two children sold the house to Hector and Della Urquhart and moved east. Hector
Urquhart came to Springfield to manage the local plant of the National Biscuit
Company (later Nabisco). In 1905 he bought the plant and continued operating is as
the Springfield Baking Company, a mass production cookie and cracker bakery.