316 Church Street - Tribble - Beech Home

Caudis H. Tribble and Ozelle Hereford were married in Madison County in 1924. Their house in Madison is recorded in the tax records as having been constructed in 1939. When Gladys McFarlen True and her husband "Pud" moved to Madison, the couples became close friends. After a year of renting rooms in a house on Front Street, Gladys wanted to live next door to Ozelle, and the feeling was mutual. The Tribbles gave the Trues a deed to the corner lot beside them without a penny being paid.

Still, Gladys and Pud paid their friends for the lot within a year.They built the house shown below within a year their house payment was $29.50 per month. The Trues owned and operated a grocery store at 208 Main (later Bandito Burrito and now part of Old Black Bear) for over 30 years, remaining lifelong friends with the Tribbles.

The Tribble Home is now owned by Geoffrey and Karen Beech.

314 Church Street - Balch - Wann - Marler Home

This house was constructed in 1910 according to the Madison County tax assessor's records.
In 1916 it was sold by Samuel W. Balch to Ora B. Wann. Her husband Fred was never mentioned on the deed, so he may have died by then. Ora was a long-time Madison postmaster; Samuel Balch was a long-time rural letter carrier of the Madison area. Samuel married Martha A. Parson in 1875, and they had at least 12 children, according to census records, but by 1910 only 8 were still living. Samuel's father was Hezekiah J. Balch, an area pioneer and charter member of Mt. Zion Baptist Church between Nance and Jeff Roads.                   

Hezekiah married Tabitha Vaughn, a sister of George Washington Vaughn, connected to the Hughes
and Spencer families of Madison. Tabitha's father was Micajah Vaughn, who was a signer of the first Alabama State Constitution in 1819. Hezekiah served as the first Sunday School Superintendent at the church. His land is today the location of Kelly Springs, along Jeff Road.  Ora B. Wann has already been mentioned in association with the house at 302 Church Street. (Just imagine, Madison had an "0. B. Wann" long before George Lucas introduced a character with that name in the Star Wars movies.) The view of the Balch-Wann house below shows how deceptive the front appearances may be of the home along Church Street. The lots were very deep, so the houses were expanded behind the front faces over the years. This house is recorded in tax records as having 2456 square feet of space, typical of such homes along the street. The tax records also show that the current owner is Linda L. Marler.

313 Church Street

(Originally published on the blog of the current owners, Billie and Susan Goodson)

My previous post dealt with the topic of how we came about being the proud owners of Ms. Hessie's House, located at 313 Church Street in Madison, AL.  Some may be wondering who/why Ms. Hessie while others may be asking the question of where is Madison, AL.  I have to admit, when we lived in Huntsville in 1987/8, we never really even knew that the sleepy little berg of Madison lay only a little piece to the west of the apartment we lived in for the year.  I wish we had driven through Madison then, although we probably wouldn't have remembered much about it.  When we returned to Madison county in 2007, we were shocked at how expansive Madison City had become, especially considering we missed it entirely 20 years before!  Madison is a growing, vibrant community that we have really grown to love in the several months now that we have lived there.  You can learn more about Madison by visiting their city website here.  

Being a huge fan of history, I embarked on learning who Ms. Hessie was to add to my knowledge of the home. To me, understanding the personal side of the history of the home just adds so much character to the features of the home.  That is what distinguishes in my mind between a house and home.  Knowing the previous generations that have called this house a home helps us preserve the unique legacy of this house as a home.

The house at 313 Church Street was originally constructed for Nancy Hesseltine (Hessie) Gillespie Farley in 1911.  Miss Hessie (as she would be known) was the daughter of Campbell Milton Gillespie and Narcissa Lorinda Clark.  She was born on July 22, 1866 in Maryville, Tennessee.  The family moved first to Morgan County, Alabama in 1870 then relocated to Madison, Alabama in 1879.  Miss Hessie would graduate from honors from the Huntsville Female Seminary on May 30 1888 and became a teacher.  

Miss Hessie married Joseph Bruce Farley in 1892.  The couple had one daughter, Frances Lorinda Farley who was born in 1893.  Mr Farley unfortunately passed away from malaria in 1894 at the age of 28 and Miss Hessie would never remarry.  For a few years she went into partnership with her brother, William Gillespie to run Farley and Gillespie Drug Store in Madison.  After the store was sold, Miss Hessie accepted a teaching position in Tuscumbia.  She would return to Madison after the passing of her father in 1910 (her mother passed in 1907). Her sister, Miss Nora (Narcissa Elizabeth or "Sister") could not live alone, so Miss Hessie had the home at 313 Church Street constructed. 


Miss Hessie started teaching first grade in Madison, and Lorinda studied music at Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia until 1914. Lorinda would marry Herbert Lafayette Thorton on January 21, 1920, shortly after he returned home from serving in France during World War I.  Their first daughter, Frances Farley, was born February 12, 1921 at Miss Hessie's home in Madison.  Two other daughters were also born in Madison: Nancy Kate on March 16, 1923 and Lorinda Clark on October 24, 1924. In 1935 Herbert became a charter member of Alabama's new Highway Patrol.

Although a life-long Presbyterian, Miss Hessie taught Sunday School in the Baptist Church. She was active in school, church and many civic organizations.  She taught her forty-two consecutive years.   She had a deep love for teaching and dreaded the day she would have to retire. That would never happen as she would suffer a stroke during the Christmas holidays and died on January 1, 1939.  She is buried beside her husband Bruce in the Farley Family Cemetery.  As a side note, following Miss Hessie, Mrs. Howard Hughes was appointed to replace her as the first grade teacher.  She would hold that position for thirty-seven years.  Combined, Miss Hessie and Mrs. Hughes taught first grade at Madison Elementary for 65 years!

Nancy married J.B. Womack from Lynchburg, Tennessee.  Herbert died on August 7, 1961. He was buried in Madison the Madison Cemetery.  Nancy and J.B lived with Lorinda until she died on January 1, 1966. She is buried beside Herbert.  After J.B. passed, Nancy married Orval Cooper. Nancy would pass on December 13, 2004, and Orval would pass on July 31, 2016.  Nancy had two daughters, Pat Womack Edwards and Kathy Womack Williams Lee.  A rich heritage laid within the walls and boards of the home at 313 Church Street.  

It is our sincere hope that the home on Church Street will continue through the ages to be a home where family is loved and cherished.  May the walls of this home soak up more generations of love and may the feet that cross the threshold always find joy within the walls.  We so deeply appreciate the rich heritage of this home and strive to honor it.  May it always be Miss Hessie's, who laid a deep foundation in service and love to her family and community.
  





20 Main Street


The building now on this site was constructed as a post office and dedicated by pharmacist and former mayor George Walton (“Doc”) Hughes on May 6, 1962.  Since the relocation of the Post Office, businesses and a church have occupied the space.  The lot was the original location of the store owned/operated by George Washington Wise.   George's brother James Arthur Wise was his partner.  James and his family lived in the house at 16 Main Street for several years.  The store was torn down after 1910.  George Washington Wise was a son-in-law of Madison's first merchant, George Washington Martin.  G. W. Wise lived just a short distance away, across Martin Street.

See the article on G.W. Wise here.



Madison People: George Washington Wise


George Washington Wise was born in 1854 in Virginia to Samuel and Sarah Wise.  Though they had several children in Pennsylvania and Virginia, Samuel and Sarah purchased a farm just south of Madison, moving here in 1872 with their two youngest sons, G. W. and James Arthur.  By the early 1880s, G. W. was a merchant in Madison, and James was a farmer in Limestone County.  During the next several decades, both brothers bought several parcels of land in Madison.  George became a partner of the Burton & Wise Pharmacy, but soon set up his own general store with his brother.  He was also in partnerships with the Hertzler family and with B. F. Harper, mayor of Madison in 1900.

George Washington Wise in center.  The other two men
are unidentified, but the man on right with similar mustache
may be brother & partner James Arthur Wise.

 Among his other accomplishments, G. W. became the President of the Bank of Madison and a trustee of both the Madison Training School (1913) and the Madison Male and Female Academy (1885).  In 1893 he married Hattie Martin, a daughter of Madison’s first lot owner and merchant, George Washington Martin.  Hattie was a twin sister of Hassie, who died tragically in a railroad accident, as did their mother, Nancy Leeman Martin, in an earlier accident.  Perhaps the best life summary of G. W. Wise was given in his obituary as published in the Huntsville Daily Times on September 10, 1931:

George W. Wise, 78, for 40 years a leading merchant of Madison Station, died at his residence yesterday afternoon after a brief illness.  Mr. Wise was born in Winchester, Va., and moved to Madison at the age of 38 years (should be 18 years).  He was one of the leading residents of the community and took an active part in all community affairs.  He was an active member of the Methodist Church.”
 “Surviving are a son, George W. Wise, Jr., of Madison, and a daughter, Mrs. R. S. Banks of Birmingham.  Funeral services were conducted from the Madison Methodist Church this afternoon at 4 o’clock, the Rev. Ted Hightower officiating.  Burial followed in the Madison cemetery, with Womack in charge.  The following served as pallbearers:  D. S. Lanier, J. L. Brewer, R. E. Cain, J. S. Cain, Ernest Cain and C. H. Dublin.”

George’s father Samuel died in 1876 at age 65.  His mother Sarah died in 1895, after a life of 79 years.  His wife Hattie died in 1915.  His brother James died in 1889, living to only the age of 28 and having a son Arthur Sydney who died at 7 months of age.  James in 1884 married Lucy F. Harris, daughter of Thomas Harris, who has the earliest death date on a tombstone in the city cemetery.  Lucy’s father Thomas was a son of Dr. Algernon Sydney Harris of Madison.  Thomas died in Madison in 1869, before the Wise family came to Madison, from wounds received at the Battle of Manassas.
 Postcard photo of home of George Washington Wise, located at the southwestern corner of Garner and Martin Streets.  The dwelling is long gone, but it was truly impressive for its day.  George married Hattie Martin, a twin of Hassie, daughters of Madison's first merchant and lot owner, George Washington Martin and his wife Nancy Leeman, a granddaughter of the owner of Leeman's Ferry.


It is ironic that one of the most involved and prominent early citizens of Madison is buried in the city cemetery without a tombstone.  There is an enclosed plot for the family of George Washington Wise, including his parents and a brother – all of whom have monuments except G. W. himself and his son of the same name.  It is not known why G. W. has no headstone, but his life certainly had a strong influence on the town.


G. W. Wise and his wife Hattie had sons G. Cantor (1898) and George Washington Wise Jr. (1904).  They also had a daughter named Sarah Betty (1901).  Sarah married Robert S. Banks in 1926 and lived in Decatur before moving to Birmingham.  George Jr., a farmer, never married and died in 1937 in Decatur at his sister’s house.  He is buried beside his parents in Madison’s city cemetery, without a tombstone, just like his father.

106 Main Street -- Opie Balch Realty


Elbert and Opie Balch operate a realty company in this building now, also containing an office for their son, Matthew J. Balch, Attorney at Law.  The present building had been constructed as a post office in 1928.  It served that function until the early 1940s when it was moved to the Dea T. Thomas building at 206 Main Street.  

The building at 106 Main was then sold to Robert Shelton for his barbershop following the 1942 fire in Jim Williams' store building at 100 Main.  Shelton's barbershop was operated by his son Hoyte Shelton after Robert retired.  Hoyte lived at 114 Church Street and died in 1997.  Then the  building was inherited by Teresa Reed and Pat Whitworth, his nieces.  For a while the building was operated as a florist shop, then leased to Dana Burrows for her hair and nail salon business called Studio 106.  In 2012 Studio 106 moved to 16 Main, perhaps in a sense losing only the “0” from the name.

104 Main Street - Zion Gourmet Popcorn


 Now hosting Zion Gourmet Popcorn, this structure previously housed Sallie's Whistlestop Sweet Shop.  The structure was previously the office of Billy Nolan Drake, a grandson of Jim Williams.  This location was also part of the site of the Jim Williams' store that encompassed the parking lot along Wise Street as well.  The large oak trees shown in front of the building have been removed since the older photograph was made.

101 Main Street -- Main Street Cafe


This structure was erected in 1954-5 as a multi-function third City Hall.  The first City Hall was the original Roundhouse.  The second was a two-story wooden building located at the southwestern corner of the intersection of Garner and Martin Streets, where George Washington Wise's house had been.  The City Hall building is visible in the upper right of the 1951 aerial photograph below.  Since the early 1990's Madison has enjoyed a modern fourth City Hall on Hughes Road, also depicted below in an aerial photograph.  The facility at 101 Main Street is operated by owner Cindy Sensenberger as an up-scale restaurant, with an outdoor pavilion and inside seating, including two of the 1950's jail cells.






16 Main Street -- Clay House


Sarah Russell Clay, Civil War widow of Andrew Clay, was the first owner of Lot 7.  However, she initially lived on the south half of Lot 7, later dwelling on Lot 9.  The north “part” of Lot 7 was deeded by Sarah to Thomas and John Hopkins, grandsons of Alabama's second governor Thomas Bibb, acting as agents for a Protestant Episcopal Church.  The deed stipulated that the property was to be used as a "Poor House" for widows and orphans of soldiers and other destitute persons.  The occupations of subsequent owners indicate that the structure was used through the years not only for family residences, but also probably as Madison's first hotel, mortuary, hospital, museum of fine china, and art gallery.



Today the structure is the business location of Studio 106 and several other enterprises.

It is not clear as to whether or not a Protestant Episcopal Church was ever built on the lot after Thomas and John as trustees purchased the north part of Lot 7 in 1874.  However, it is certainly possible that the original structure at the location did serve as a church and/or an orphanage for a time.  It is further known that Thomas B. and James B. Hopkins were two of the group of five or more men who in 1884 formed a committee to incorporate a public school that had begun operations in 1883 as the Madison Male and Female Academy.  The school was located in the area along what is now the southern end of Pension Row on the west side of Sullivan Street.

The Hopkins family members associated with Lot 7 of Madison have a rich history in the town and in  These local Hopkins men were grandsons of Governor Thomas Bibb through his daughter and youngest child Eliza, which probably accounts for their middle initials as “B.” for Bibb.  They no doubt would have attended various parties and social functions in Huntsville and in the nearby Limestone County community of Belle Mina, where Governor Bibb had impressive homes.  Eliza married Arthur Mosely Hopkins, whose father Arthur F. Hopkins (1794-1866) served as a chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court and as a U. S. Senator for the state.  He was also the President of the Mobile & Ohio RailRoad.  Arthur Mosely Hopkins fought for the Confederacy in battles at Selma and in Tuscaloosa.  His own accounts of participation in the conflicts can be seen in correspondence contained in the Frances Cabaniss Roberts Collection of the Special Collections Archive of the Salmon Library at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.  Images of the correspondence may also be accessed via the Internet on the website of the University or by selection of the Roberts Collection at dkdayton.net for as long as that private server hosts the digitized data.
the state.

In the 1840s there was a firm of Bibb & Hopkins operating in Huntsville, probably involving the governor and Arthur F. Hopkins.  During the 1870s and 1880s there was the firm of “John W. Hopkins & Brother” doing business in Madison as grocers, dry goods, and cotton buyers.  There was a “sister” store also in Nashville, Tennessee, involving Hopkins.



The 1870 census shows Eliza Hopkins as 48 years old, a widowed head of household in Madison with her son Thomas B. at age 25 living in her house.  Next door was the household of John W. Hopkins at age 29 with his wife Anne and two children.  Thomas and John were both listed with the occupation as retail grocers.  Eliza's occupation was given as seamstress.  John was also the administrator of the estate of prominent Madison merchant Charles H. Rhea in the 1870s.  By the late 1880s the Hopkins families sold their properties in Madison and moved away.  An 1887 deed shows James B. Hopkins and his wife Madeline selling Lots 21, 22, 24, and 25 to Isaac Hoffman, including a notation that parts of the property had been owned by the Cumberland Presbyterian Church.  That church had moved into a building shared with the local Masonic chapter under an agreement that specified the days each organization would have use of the structure.  The building was also located in the Pension Row area.
 
Prior historical accounts from verbal memories and tradition have attributed the structure now designated as the Clay House on 16 Main to be the house of Sarah Russell Clay.  However, later in- depth research has proven that she never actually occupied the north half of Lot 7.  Yet, she did in fact purchase the complete Lot 7, but she then soon sold the north half of it to the Hopkins brothers.  Land deeds indicate that Sarah also owned Lots 8 and 9, residing on the southern half of Lot 7 for a time, then living on Lot 9 at the time of her passing in 1886 when her daughter Maggy Clay Gray sold the rest of the lands that she inherited to James Arthur Wise, brother and store partner of George Washington Wise.



12 MAIN STREET, The Strong – Whitworth House


The house at 12 Main stands on Lot 2 of the original town plat of James Clemens' land that became the City of Madison.  Lot 2 was first purchased at the October 5, 1868, Clemens estate auction by Hamilton G. Bradford.  The property changed hands many times until Seymour and Indiana Doolittle built their home here.  They also purchased in an 1876 auction the adjacent Lot 1, which had been bought at the 1868 auction by John J. “Studdivant” (Sturdivant) of Limestone County.  The Doolittles likewise purchased Lots 3 and 4 that had initially been purchased by Theodorick S. Clay, a brother of Thomas J. Clay and Andrew Clay, all of whom appear in the history of Madison.  Andrew died in the Civil War while his family lived in Limestone County in the Shoal Ford area.  However, Andrew's widow Sarah Russell Webb Clay moved into Madison and ended up purchasing Lots 7, 8, 9, and 10 by 1869.  Theodorick and his wife Jane purchased Lots 17 and 18 for their house across the tracks near Thomas J. Clay.

Sarah Russell had married Robertson Webb, a man 41 years her senior.  In the 1850 census she was 24, and he was 65.  They had several children together in addition to being guardians of the three Clay brothers, who were children of Robertson's sister (or daughter?) Nancy Webb Clay.  After Robertson passed away, Sarah married Andrew Clay, one of the matured children that she and Robertson had raised, but who was still closer to Sarah's age.  More of Sarah's story is told in relation to the Clay House at 16 Main Street.

The Doolittles built a log house on Lot 2 and operated a large blacksmith shop on their adjacent   However, in Madison County of Alabama he married for a second time in 1875.  His second wife was American Indiana Pocahontus Gewin, a member of the Gewin family who lived with the Chickasaw Indians in Mississippi for a time but became a postmaster family of long duration in Madison from 1875 to 1915.  In 1902 the Doolittles sold Lots 1, 2, 3, and 4 to Charles and Maggie Strong and J. A. Strong (an unmarried man).  The Strongs were also blacksmiths, and they added a gasoline-powered gristmill to the blacksmith operation on the property by 1913.  The original Doolittle log home burned in 1905, but with help from the townspeople, a new house was constructed on the lot within the same year.
Historic Bailey family cabin in
home of  Dr. Charles Whitworth 
properties with Seymour's brother Jared. Seymour Doolittle was born in Connecticut, where he married for the first time and then had children born in Michigan.

The Strong house was extensively remodeled by Thomas and Sara Landman Whitworth, who purchased it in 1952.  Both Whitworths passed away in 2008, and then the property became owned by Lottie S. Downie but occupied by David  Ballard and Daniel Stagner, co-owners of the Animal Trax exotic pet store beside the railroad tracks on Church Street in Madison.  Still, the older residents of Madison associate the house at 12 Main with Sara Whitworth as its resident owner of many years.

Sara Landman Whitworth was a descendant of William Landman, who is buried on Redstone Arsenal in a family cemetery on his land.  William was a son of a German immigrant, and he patented 160 acres of arsenal land in 1813, owning 240 acres by 1815.  His children included Perlina, who married Joshua H. Beadle, a prominent Madison-area landowner who had a store in Huntsville.  Another child of William was George Landman, who lived beside three Beadle families, including Abraham Beadle and his nephew Joshua.  George had a son James Henry Landman, who worked as a clerk for six years in the store of Joshua Beadle.  James was later assistant quartermaster in Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest’s command.  James became Madison County’s Tax Assessor in 1880.  By his second wife, James had at least four sons, including Charles T. Landman, who was the father of Sara.

Thomas Jerome Whitworth was licensed to marry Sara Landman on March 1, 1950, per Madison County Marriage Book Volume 95, page 22.  Sara Whitworth was best known to Madison residents as the owner of Whitworth Realty, operating out of the oldest storefront in town, at 110 Main Street.  As advancing years curtailed Sara’s active business participation, her realty office became for a time an art gallery of her son “Jerry” (Thomas Jerome, Jr.), of Paris, France.  Jerry himself paints, as well as collecting art in Europe and New York.  Another son, Dr. Charles Darwin Whitworth, is a local veterinarian, who lives in a house on Mill Road that incorporates and preserves the two-story log cabin of James and Sarah Bailey.  That log cabin is almost certainly the oldest house in the Madison area, if not all of northern Alabama.  It is believed to date back before 1818, when it served as the first stagecoach stop on the route from Huntsville to Mooresville at Bailey Springs.

Sara Whitworth in her office
at 110 Main Street in 2004
The Whitworth heritage of the area goes from Thomas Jerome to Arthur David, called “Dutch” Whitworth.  Dutch married Leona Alvada Sexton in 1912 and had seven children: Brazzie (died young), Arthur David Jr. (“Shine”), Jeffolene, John Marion (“Buck”), Kathryn, Thomas J., and Emma Jeanne.  Shine married Edna Doris Tuck, Jeffolene married Stanley Vance, Buck married Willie Metta Strong, Kathryn married Jack Lewter, and Emma Jeanne married Marshall McAfee.  Dutch’s father was John David Whitworth, who married Emma Virginia Tribble in 1896 and had eleven children.  Emma was a daughter of Robert Donnell Tribble and Mattie Gooch (granddaughter of Roland and sister of William Tell Gooch, who married John David’s sister Ada).

John David Whitworth was a son of William Whitworth and Mildred Bowers, who were married in 1858.  Mildred was a daughter of David Bowers.  William’s middle name is reported as Jason, Jansen, and Jefferson in various records.  He was a son of Daniel Whitworth and Elizabeth Dedman, who were married in 1833.  Elizabeth was a daughter of Madison County pioneer Francis Dedman.   Of John David Whitworth’s siblings, Mattie Susan married Madison entrepreneur Jim Williams and lived at 19 Front Street, Laura married William Dublin, Ada married William Tell Gooch (brother of Mattie Gooch Tribble, mother of John David’s wife Emma), Archie married Mattie Trotman, and Charles Hatton married Maggie Donaldson.  John David’s father William J. had siblings Samuel Thomas, James Edmund, Elizabeth, Martha Ann (married Charles Carter), Powhatan, John, and Carter or Cortes (also known as Toby) Whitworth.  Samuel married Ann Carter and was severely wounded at Cold Harbor during the Civil War, while Powhatan was killed at Chickamauga.  Daniel’s father was Rowland Whitworth, earliest known of the line.  Rowland married Martha, a daughter of Daniel Walthall, in Virginia in 1790.  Their children besides Daniel were Jane, Thomas (who married Susannah Winn), Nancy (who married Walter Aday), William, Sophia, Elizabeth, Edmund, and John (who married Francis Alice Watson).  John, Edmund, Elizabeth, and Nancy are all known to have come to Madison County, as well as Daniel Whitworth and his descendants.  Perhaps no other pioneer family was so extensively integrated by marriages into the fabric of Madison.
Below are shown the 2012 senior Madison Belles:
(L-R) Ramsey Griffin, Juliana Johnson, Alecia Eidsaune,
and Joylyn Bukovac at 12 Main Street.



Main Street Madison


When Madison was established in 1857 by the sale of lots in the town planned to be called “Clemens Depot” by initial landowner James Clemens as his namesake along the railroad, it consisted of only 55 total lots.  Of these, 29 fronted to some extent along the railroad, intended by Clemens to serve as “storefronts” and called such by the fact that an owner would operate a store in the front of any structure, while living with his family in the back.  Later, about a dozen of these 29 lots would hold only residences, but even some of the lots not fronting along the railroad had stores at various times in the 1800s.

Today the old business district includes various retail and commercial establishments along Main Street and a few more around the intersection of Church and Front Streets.  However, there are a couple of old homes along Main Street, one of which has been converted entirely into business operations. The additional residences along Church, Martin, Arnett, College, Maple, Martin, and Sullivan Streets are also considered be in the historical district, but these locations are typically not occupied for commercial enterprises – still with a few exceptions for businesses.

Main Street itself was not given a name in the plat by James Clemens.  It is known that on the 1890   Clemens' plat showed Lots 1 – 13 from west to east along the south side of today's Main Street.  It also included Lots 46 – 48 on the eastern end of the street, where it connects with the southern end of Church Street today.  Church Street was initially called the Huntsville – Triana Pike after it got any name at all as part of a county road.  Today's Garner and Wise Streets were not shown on the original plat.  They were later created from alleys taken from the bounds of various lots along their routes.  Martin Street was shown on the original plat, but it had no name initially.
Hartford Insurance Company map of Madison, this street was titled as “Broadway” and what is today's Front Street north of the railroad was titled as Railway Street.

Lots 1 – 13 along Main Street were typical of Clemens' plan for storefronts facing the railroad, as were Lots 14 -23 along today's Front Street.  That plan laid out lots that were 66 feet wide and 198 feet deep.  This was based upon the 66-foot length of the standard surveryor's chain for measurements – one chain wide, three chains deep.  This choice of lot dimensions allowed for a dwelling structure to be constructed for merchants that would measure basically up to 66 feet wide and 66 feet deep.  The front of such a structure would be used for merchandising, facing the street and the railroad.  The next 66 feet of depth in the lot would nornally be used for such things as a cistern, possibly a chicken yard or coop, and perhaps a small vegetable garden.  The back 66 feet of a lot would be used for pasture for a milk cow or a horse, plus the location of an “outhouse” (outdoor toilet) as far from the living quarters as possible in the lot.  Apparently, James Clemens envisioned a town populated by merchants in the most favorable locations for such livelihoods.  Other lots were mostly of varying dimensions, as can be seen in the plat.



2018 Madison Tour Of Homes

The first official event of Madison's 2019 Sesquicentennial is the December 1st, 2018 Tour of Historic Madison Homes.  The tour, sponsored by the Madison Station Historical Preservation Society will kick off the holiday season in beautiful Madison, AL!  

From 11:00 - 3:00 the first Saturday in December downtown Madison will be the place to be with five outstanding historic homes beautifully decorated for the holidays, carolers in period costumes performing throughout the tour at the Gazebo and downtown businesses welcoming shoppers and visitors!  

Ticket information coming Soon -- Tickets should be on sale in early November!


For more information visit:  
or Madison150@Madisonal.gov

QR Codes

What is a QR Code?

QR codes are pretty amazing, and we hope to use them a lot for the Madison Station Historic Station.
("QR" is short for Quick Response.) They work a lot like the bar codes that you might have seen on items at your local grocery - except you can use your cell phone to scan them.

Now that you know what they are, you will see them on many everyday things like on a map, sign, poster, etc. They can be used for all sorts of things, but the Madison Station Historical Preservation Society uses them to link back to articles on our website and blogs.

Make sure you download QR code reader app for your smartphone before you visit us and be on the lookout for QR codes in windows and other markers.. That way, you will be able to scan any QR code on your printable map and read all about whichever location you are currently visiting. This groundbreaking technology brings a new element to your visit in Madison, making it even more noteworthy.

There are many QR code readers in the App Store, and any should work with any of them. All you have to do is download one! If you don't know which App to chose, you can always click on the links below to help get you started!

iOS App     Google App

17 FRONT STREET, Anderson -- Sensenberger House



Matthew Harvey Anderson, Merchant and Director of the Bank of Madison, built this house sometime after July of 1904, the date when he purchased Lots 23 and 24.  It was occupied by Dr. James Allen Kyser for about 50 years before falling into neglect.  Tony and Cindy Sensenberger purchased the ready-to-collapse structure at auction in 1997.

The house is located on original Lots 23 and 24, including possibly part of Lot 22 in the yard.  Lot 24 was first purchased from James Clemens by carpenter Edmund “Ned” Martin on 5 March 1860, just about three months before Clemens’ death and about a year before the start of the Civil War and the associated Emancipation Proclamation. It was the last lot sold by Clemens himself. Edmund was a “free man of color” per deed recordss and the 1860 census. That census showed that Edmund was thirty years old, had a wife named Sarah at age forty-five and a daughter named Lucinda at age nine, all born in Alabama. They were enumerated in a complex of free black households clustered around the house of blacksmith William T. Dunnivant, who lived next door to Theodorick Clay, who lived on today's Front Street at the west side of Buttermilk Alley. Additional data in the Madison County deeds show that Edmund Martin was born in Morgan County.  He was living in Valhermosa Springs of Morgan County at the time of the 1870 census.

It may be that events related to the Civil War led to Edmund Martin abandoning Lot 24 or otherwise leaving Madison. The fact is that after the Reconstruction-era chancery court’s handling of the Clemens estate in 1868, physician and depot agent William Dunn sold Lot 24 to Bettie Turner. She was noted as his “coloured” servant in Deed Book JJ, pages 455–6. The sale was witnessed by Richard A. Wiggins and his son, Robert E. Wiggins. Richard's wife, Jackey G. Dunn. Wiggins, was a sister of William Dunn, who was enumerated in Richard’s household in the 1850 census. The Wiggins plantation was located near the southeastern corner of the Martin Road and Wall-Triana Highway intersection. After leaving the Wiggins plantation, Dr. Dunn may have initially lived in the first depot building, or he may have built a house on Lot 24, where Bettie would later live.  It is known that Dr. Dunn lived on Martin Street in the 1860 census.  Dr. Dunn's last house is known to be incorporated into the large house next door at 19 Front Street on Lots 20 and 21. Dunn purchased Lot 19 in January 1860, so he may have lived there for a time.  He also owned Lots 22 and 26–28 north of Front Street before his passing in 1871.

During the Civil War, Dunn had a “movie script” experience. According to the 1913 special edition of the Huntsville Weekly Mercury newspaper that related the history of Madison, when the Union army first occupied Huntsville and wanted to go by rail to Decatur, they feared sabotage and attacks along the way.  When they reached Madison, which was not yet occupied by Union troops, they took Dr. Dunn and tied him to the front of a flatcar placed ahead of the engine.  The theory was that if a derailment or an attack came, he would be the first to suffer. The federals also suspected that Dunn had information that he would not tell. It turned out that the tracks were sabotaged, and the federals were fired upon as they reached Beaver Dam Creek, west of Madison. When the car with hostage Dunn left the tracks, he became dislodged from his bindings and fell into some bushes, where he hid until after the ensuing skirmish. The Union forces found him frightened but unhurt. Soon thereafter, Madison itself was occupied by Union forces, during which time there was no post office, and only the Federal's supply store was allowed to operate in the town. Of course, the men who owned the other stores were all gone to serve in the Confederate military. Growth and commerce in Madison were halted during the war, but they quickly returned at the end of hostilities.

In 1871, just weeks before his death, William Dunn also sold Lot 23 to the same Bettie Turner for use “during her lifetime,” per Deed Book RR, page 584. After Turner’s death, in December 1901 Mrs. Annie E. Wiggins Sanders filed a copy of Turner’s last will and testament with the probate court. The filing showed that Turner had died with no heirs or next of kin and that she left all her property “of any kind” to Mrs. Sanders. The original of her will had been given to Dr. Isaac F. Deloney for safekeeping, but he had moved to Leighton in Lawrence County and misplaced the will, according to his testimony. The copy held by Sanders was validated by her uncle, Dr. William Dunn (before his death), and by Dr. A. S. Harris of Madison. Thereafter, Lots 23 and 24 began a new series of ownership, becoming the property of Matthew Harvey Anderson in 1904.  Harvey Anderson was one of the Directors of the Bank of Madison which was founded in 1904.  He also was a principal partner of both Anderson–Bronaugh & Company and the Hertzler–Anderson Company.  Both businesses were general stores which, according to the 1905 Alabama Merchantile book listings, sold groceries and other merchandise -- there being 12 such listings in Madison.  Harvey and his wife, Annie Hertzler Anderson, were both from Ohio with Pennsylvania roots.  In fact, Annie’s father, Dr. John Hertzler, also came to Madison from Ohio following the Civil War.  Annie's brother, Frank Hertzler, later built and lived in the house at 25 Front Street.

After constructing a large house on the lot along Front Street, the Anderson's sold it by 1926 to Dr. James Allen Kyser. Dr. Kyser was recognized by the U.S. government for helping to bring the 1918–9 flu epidemic under control in north Alabama. The Kyser family lived in the house for nearly fifty years, and then it was purchased by Billy J. and Nancy Jane Jones of Huntsville.  In 1997, the collapsing and abandoned old house was purchased at auction by Tony and Cindy Sensenberger. They lovingly restored and expanded it, keeping as much of the original structure as possible. Today the house has surpassed even its former glory.





320 Martin Street, Pride – Bashore House


William Thomas Pride and his wife Mary Fletcher Pride built this house in 1911.  While their marriage is not included in the on-line listing provided by the Madison County Records Center (courthouse probate archives) at http://www.co.madison.al.us/mcrc/, the marriage is mentioned in the book about Dr. Richard Matthew Fletcher, as written by his daughter Octavia in the early 1900's.  Octavia's sister Mary, wife of Dr. William T. Pride, was known to the family as "Tee".  Tee and "Willy T." Pride were probably married in Limestone County, since the Fletcher family had roots there.  In the census records of 1910 and 1920, Tee is shown as Mary G. Pride, born 1875, whereas William T. Pride was born about 1865.  Their firstborn son was listed in 1910 as James W. Pride (age 2), but in 1920 he was listed as Wilsey J. Pride (age 12).

Doctor Pride was one of six children of James Harvey Pride and his wife Amanda Butler.  James Harvey Pride was one of three respected citizens of Madison who were seized by the Union forces following a battle in the town on  May 17, 1864.  They were taken as presumed spies, to be executed for supposedly guiding the Confederate forces to eliminate the Union sentries, but a more reasonable Union officer intervened after a time, and the men were released unharmed.  The parents of James were Wilsey and Rebecca Pride.  Wilsey's will of 1848 was entered into probate in 1849.  Testators were Samuel Trotman, David Blackburn, and James Irvin.  The will listed as heirs Wilsey's widow Rebecca and seven children.  Specifically named were Mary Jane, Alexander, and Martha, all born to his second wife.  The listed heirs also included children by his first wife, who was Eleanor Gray.  These children were William, James H., Burton, and Margaret (born 1818, married to John Maxwell).  Eleanor was a daughter of William and Eleanor Wardrobe Gray, and she married Wilsey Pride in 1805.  After her passing, Wilsey married Rebecca Gray Love in 1839, according to several family trees posted on Ancestry.com.  Those trees show that Wilsey was born in 1783, a son of Burton Pride and Sarah Bizwell.  Burton Pride was a son of Thomas Pride, whose ancestry was shown back to the 1600s in Virginia and England, including intermarriages with the Burtons and Fowlers, surnames  found as pioneers of Redstone Arsenal lands.

James Harvey Pride's brother William G. Pride married Ellen Jane Gray.  In the 1850 census of Monroe County, Mississippi, the family of William G. Pride included Nancy Gray, age 65, born in Virginia, so the Pride and Gray families of Madison remained closely connected through the years.  James' son Walter married Katie Garner, and James' son Wilsey married Katie Mason.  Wilsey fathered another James Harvey Pride, who was born in 1877 and died by 1935.  This younger J. H. Pride, grandson of the senior and nephew of Dr. William Pride, was a partner in the firms of Pride & Bradford (drugstore) and Pride & Carter (general store) in Madison, according to the 1905 Alabama Mercantile Book.  He became an attorney, according to the 1929 Alabama Blue Book and Social Register.  This nephew of Dr. William Pride married Sallie LeRoy Betts, daughter of Judge Tancred Betts of Madison.

Tancred Betts was a son of Edward Chambers Betts.  Tancred served as Madison County Attorney, as well as Judge of Circuit Court and later as Judge of the Law & Equity Court.  He was a trustee of the Alabama Polytechnic Institute (Auburn University), and served for 10 years as Chairman of the Madison County Democratic Executive Committee.  He married Maude Minor Broun, a daughter of Dr. William LeRoy Broun and Sallie Fleming.

Edward Betts (father of Tancred) was born and raised on his father Charles Betts' plantation, a part of which was located between what is now Hughes Road, Gillespie Road, Brown's Ferry Road, and Wall-Triana Highway.  This is where the Kroger Shopping Center, the Madison Branch Library, and Bob Jones High School are today.  Members of the Maxwell family (married into the Pride and the Blackburn families) are buried in the Gray Cemetery, used by the old Providence Presbyterian Church, just to the northwest of the plantation.  There is another old cemetery on the plantation that could have originally been used by the Betts family, but it has no tombstones today, so the Betts family perhaps used the Gray Cemetery.  Edward Betts' father, Charles Edward Betts, lived in Lunenburg, Mecklenburg County, Virginia before coming to Madison County, Alabama to establish his local plantation.  He married Martha Cousins Chambers, a sister of United States Senator Henry Chambers, namesake of Chambers County, Alabama.

Edward Betts was the first Commissioner of Agriculture for Alabama, as well as an attorney and judge of the County Court.  He was educated in private schools in Madison County and by private tutors, going to the University of Virginia before studying and traveling in the east and abroad.  After practicing law for a number of years, he retired to the family plantation, serving as trustee of the University of Alabama.  In 1854 Edward married Virginia Augusta Swope in Lawrence County, Alabama.  She was a daughter of John Swope and Cyntha Early.  Cyntha shared common ancestry with General Jubal Early of the Confederacy and her Swope ancestors came from Ireland to Virginia in 1702.  The family is descended from Carbri Lifichar, an ancient King of Ireland, born in 225 A.D.

Interconnections of the Pride, Fletcher, Maxwell, Betts, Mason, Brown, and Gray families of the Madison area led to some interesting interactions.  For example, when Amanda Pride, widow of the older James Harvey Pride and mother of Dr. William T. Pride, went to court in Madison County to establish the right to inherit and sell the lands of her deceased husband, the case was adjudicated by Judge Tancred Betts, a relative.  In fact, one can be sure that members of these interconnected families visited the house at 320 Martin Street in Madison on many occasions as they celebrated special events, like the birth of sons James Wilsey Pride and Richard Fletcher Pride to Dr. William Pride and his wife Mary Fletcher.


113 Maple Street Thorson - Haas Home

Built just after the turn-of-the-century, the Thorson home displays all of the features repeated in many Madison homes. The Roy W. Thorson family lived in the home for many years. They were farmers.  The home is a one and one-half story with a hipped roof extending over the veranda which is supported by six Tuscan columns. The entrance has a transom and sidelights that extend to the transom.  The large front windows feature a beautiful leaded glass design across the top.

Ms. Joan Lynch Spruiell purchased the home in 1980. In 1981 , she had the plumbing and electrical
completely updated. Today, she and her husband, Scott Haas, live in the home; they were married in
1984.

Joan and Scott replaced the original tin roof with shingles and turned the unfinished attic into a master bedroom suite in 1986. They also replaced the missing, original banister around the veranda
in 1992.

312 Church Street Burton - Balch - Willis Home

The Burton-Balch bungalow was built between 1880 and 1885. The original exterior of the home was board and baton. The original home also featured a porch at the back of the house that separated a summer kitchen and dining room from the rest of the house. This feature was replaced during later
renovations.

The home is a basic bungalow design that has been added onto at least twice. Each addition has been to the back of the house resulting in a home that is significantly deeper than it is wide which disguises its size when viewed from the street. Today, the home consists of a foyer, three bedrooms, two baths, living room, dining room, family room, study, kitchen, breakfast room and laundry room all covering in excess of twenty-seven hundred square feet.

Mr. M. Samuel Balch purchased the home and two lots for $625 in 1915. His grandson, Joe Balch, Jr., purchased the home in 1951 where he liveduntil his death in 1998. The home was in the Balch family for over seventy years. Upon Mr. Balch's death, the home was sold to Brian and Tina Bice who owned the home for a short time. They made some renovations to the interior and exterior of the home including the addition of a detached garage.

In November 2000, Woody and Judy Pettigrew purchased the property. The Pettigrews
made numerous renovations to the interior of the home including work on the two original fireplaces, redecorating each room in the home, renovating the family room with the additional of a third fireplace and the addition of built-in bookcases. Now James & Marsha Willis are the owners.

311 Church Street Balch - Carter - Rivers Home

The Balch-Carter home was built in 191 0 by Joseph A. Balch, Sr., and wife, Clara V. Balch. It was
constructed on a parcel of land which was owned by Joseph's father, M. Samuel Balch. Joseph A.
Balch, Sr., was a rural letter carrier in the early 1900's. He used a horse and buggy and a motorcycle to deliver the mail.

The home displays a Colonial style with its steep, pitched roof and gabled dormer windows. A grove of oak trees at the site provided the framing materials to build the home.  Renovations to the interior have revealed that the interior walls are gumwood. The wooden walls were covered with a thick, felt-like material over which wallpaper was placed.

Jim and Lou Carter owned and occupied the home from May 1975 until their untimely deaths in 1996. The Carter's daughter, Lisa, and her husband, Randall Rivers,  occupied the home from 1998 until several years ago. They restored the home and also built a two-story addition.

The addition and renovations done by the Rivers have blended a modern kitchen and bath updates
with period woodwork and decor. The two original fireplaces were restored and converted to gas.
Original oak floors were restored throughout the first floor and matching wood floors were used in the addition. In the two-story addition, the downstairs features a gourmet kitchen and a master bedroom suite. The upstairs features two baths, a bedroom, a study and a large playroom.

310 Church Street - Anderson - Doherty Home

This home was built in 1979 by Larry Anderson, one of the sons of Gene and Marion Hughes Anderson, owners of Hughes Hardware. After his father's death in 2002 Larry stayed with his mother in the new home at 100 Bluebelle Drive, where he still resides. Marion passed away in 2011, and she was truly one of Madison's "grand old ladies," loved by all.

Gene Anderson was Mayor of Madison from 1957 to 1965. He also served on the Madison Water Board for 35 years, until 1984. He was a beloved and kind man in the store at 212-216 Main Street, treating youngsters like his own grandchildren.

This home is owned today by Timothy
and Maxine Doherty.

309 Church Street Wikle - Lanz Home

The Wikle-Lipscomb-Lanz home is one of the oldest homes on Church Street. It was built circa 1880 by Elizabeth Perkins. It was sold that same year toM. L. Hardage who in turn sold it to Mariah Louise Apperson in 1902. The home was sold again in 1904 to one of Madison's early, prominent citizens, Dr. Luther L. Wikle.

Dr. Wikle was an 1888 graduate of the University of Tennessee and used the home for his medical office from 1904 until he and his son, Dr. Jesse Ollie Wikle, joined their practices and moved to the second floor of the drug store at 210 Main Street in 1923.

Dr. Wikle married twice, the second time to the former Dicy Jane Armstrong who died in Madison in
1939. Dr. Wikle continued to practice until his death in 1941 at the age of 86.

The home displays some interesting historic elements in the original L-shaped floor plan. The one story home with a metal, gabled roof has a front porch which extends across the front of the house. A massive eight foot front door with stained glass panels leads into the foyer. Rooms on either side of the foyer have twelve foot ceilings. The design of the original home was called a" dog trot" design.

Katie Hughes Lipscomb and her husband Tom purchased the home in 1942. Gerald and Amy Lanz purchased the home in 1987 and live there today.

308 Church Street Farley - Sturdivant Home

Built in 1910, the Farley-Sturdivant home was constructed on land granted to the State of Alabama
by the United States government on March 2, 1819. It was conveyed to James Clemens on January 5,
1854. The home was built by J. Wesley Taylor of Mobile and sold to Mr. J. Pryor Farley on November 19, 1910.

The Sturdivant's purchased the home on August 7, 1943 from Mr. and Mrs. W. C. Gatlin. The Sears and Roebuck home is in the Victorian style with a gable roof. The apex of the gable features carved
fish scales and diamonds. The wrap-around porch has original gingerbread trim on engaged columns.  The other columns were replaced with wrought iron and the original weather board was covered
with asbestos singles.  Mr. and Mrs. Claude "Tiny" Sturdivant had two sons, Claude L. Sturdivant, Jr. and James G. Sturdivant.

Mr. Sturdivant was the son of the late Robert L. "Bob" Sturdivant who was mayor of Madison for a
number of years. Mrs. Sturdivant is the daughter of the James C. Gormley, who was a depot agent and city clerk. Mrs. Sturdivant's Grandmother Gormley was the sister of Dr. George R. Sullivan, an early physician in Madison.

307 Church Street Thomas - Wheeler Home

Built in 1910 by Dea T. Thomas, the style of this home is Queen Anne Victorian. The two-story "T" style features an unusual central entry with a split staircase with a balcony or "open hall." There is a sleeping porch on the second floor rear. The home also has a full front porch. The home has been added to in the rear. In the 1950's, the home was divided into three apartments. The home was later restored to a single home by a previous owner.

Owners Gerald and Peggy Wheeler purchased the home in 1986. It features eleven foot ceilings downstairs and nine foot upstairs. Wide baseboards and bulls eye window and door trim are original to the home. It also features three original fireplaces downstairs. The Wheeler's replaced all three mantels and hearths.

306 Church Street Gillespie- McDermott- Andrewjeski Home

The Gillespie-Wikle home was built in 1987 by William H. Gillespie. Thomas Logan Bradford
and his wife Fannie Burton moved into the home in 1906. Tom was a pharmacist working with
his future father-in-law, John Mullins Burton. In 1905 he bought another drugstore in Madison
in partnership with James Harvey Pride-- not the senior of that name (a state senator), but his grandson.  In 1918, citing bad business, Tom Bradford committed suicide by overdosing on morphine from his drugstore.  Fannie was left with two daughters and moved into the house of her father John Burton at 21 Front Street.

Mrs. Ora Wikle, a Madison school teacher, lived in the home for approximately twenty years. She was the daughter-in-law of Dr. Luther L. Wikle, a Madison physician who lived across the street at 309 Church Street. Mrs. Wikle built an addition to the north side of the home and rented this as an apartment for a number of years.

The home has had several owners over the years. Stephen and Brenda Hopkins purchased the home
in 1982. They later sold it to Dale and JoAnn McDermott.

In 1998, Mike and Nell McMinn purchased the home. They replaced the old kitchen with a new one
along with cosmetic touches through-out the home. They also added a white picket fence to the front
yard. Michael and Judy Andrewjeski most recently lived in this home but they have recently sold the home and moved.

305 Church Street

305 Church Street (1935) faces east. Built with elements of the Tudor style, this one-story brick house has a crossgabled roof and exterior chimney on the south gable wall. The windows are eight over eight sash, with true divided lights. 

A large two-story addition has been added to the north side of the house. CONTRIBUTING

304 Church Street - Bradford - Lowery - Turner Home

304 Church Street (original photo marked as 306 Church
From at least 1910 to 1930, Mollie Whitworth Bradford lived here, beside her son Tom Logan Bradford at 306 Church Street.  Mollie was the wife of John Logan Bradford and daughter of Samuel and Ann B. Whitworth.

This house has been named the Bradford - Lowery Home in older publications, but the history has
not been researched lately.  Above is a photo from the Historical Society's files, and to the left is the house the way it appeared in December of 2001.

Until recently, this home was owned by William Dillard Turner III, and tax records show it was constructed in 1940.

302 Church Street Lewis - Wann - Powell Home

This historic home has recently been extensively and impressively restored, remodeled, and enlarged by Teddy and Rikki Powell. It originally was built by Arthur Holding Lewis, a son of Meriwether A. Lewis of Triana. Lewis descendants say that Meriwether owned three steamboats to carry cotton to market from his plantation. It is believed that beams from one of the salvaged river boats formed the foundation of this house. Arthur Lewis had a store at the 104 Main Street location that is now a parking lot. Arthur married Mattie Cartwright after a short, but strange, courtship, and their family includes ties to the local Humphrey and Spencer families, as well as ancestral lineage back to George Washington's grandfather.  There are definite indications that this home was initially constructed by A. H. Lewis in 1873, possibly as a condition of getting Mattie to marry him.

The Lewis home eventually was owned by Fred and Ora B. Wann. Fred worked as a clerk in the post
office, while Ora was the postmaster for many years. To the right is an older photo of the house from the Historical Society files.

301 Church Street

Professor T. G. Riddle, principal of Madison School (the old two-story building), built the Hughes home in 1910. He owned a horse which he kept in the back yard. The concrete watering trough is still behind the home. The family played tennis in the back yard; the lot was enclosed by a board fence.

Professor Riddle and his son, Harry, who owned the home next door on the north side (the Walton-Hughes home), were in the banking business together. Professor Riddle left Madison in the 1920's.  At that time, a Mrs. Merts from Huntsville purchased the home and rented it to various tenants. She later sold the home to Mrs. Etta Lewis who was the mother of Mrs. Gordon "Mattie Belle" Hughes. The home and lot sold for three thousand dollars.

The present owners are Don Hughes Spencer and his wife, Patsy. Mr. Spencer is the great-grandson of Mrs. Etta Lewis, the grandson of Mattie Belle and Gordon Hughes and the son of Barbara Ann Hughes and Donald Spencer.

207 Church Street - Hertzler Home Site

207 Church Street
The present home at 207 Church Street was built in 1960 according to tax records.  Originally, this home site belonged to Dr. John Huber Hertzler and his wife Anna Garber. 
Dr. Hertzler and Anna moved, along with their children, from Ohio to Madison circa 1869. Here they built the ornate house shown at the right. Hertzler also acquired extensive lands of what is today the northwestern portion of Redstone Arsenal, where he built another equally large and impressive house, living in both as the inclination occurred.  Dr. John's son Frank Hertzler built the house at 25 Front Street and lived there during his adult life, while also owning arsenal lands.
Hertzler Home

208 Church Street May - Howard Hughes Home

Roy and his wife Ada purchased land adjoining both Cora Mae and Nina Garrett on the east side of Church Street in 1918-1919. Since the house at the right is recorded in the tax records as having been constructed in 1918, Roy may have built it. However, later in 1919 he and Ada sold their land to Ora B. Wann and to John Mullins Burton, so they were not here long. Yet, today part of the area along Church Street and Mill Road is called the May Development on court plats.

Our local Howard Hughes and his wife Lorene Howard (married in 1931) owned this house. 33
Howard died in 1971; Lorene passed away in 1999. Today's owner is Harriet Hess Polskoy.