Friday Favorite: Brick Double, Fletcher Place

Written by on April 1, 2016 in Friday Favorites - 5 Comments
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722 Harrison Street

There are so many special buildings and places to love in Fletcher Place, but this one is a standout, as it is so unusual compared to other homes in the area.

The earliest listing for the property found in old city directories were from 1877, where residents on both sides of the double did not yet seem to have an address number, but were listed as living “ne corner Harrison and Concordia.” Those first listed occupants were railroad engineer, Charles W. Tyler, who worked for the I. C. & L. Railroad company in the western half and Orpheus Williamson, a switchman for the I. P. & C. Railroad company.

1887 Sanborn

1887 Sanborn map, showing the property in the lower leftt hand corner, labeled 22 and 24 Harrison Street (courtesy IUPUI Digital Archives)

Fletcher Place is one of the city’s protected historic neighborhoods, under the Indianapolis Historic Preservation Commission. In the Fletcher Place Historic Preservation Plan, this structure is known as the “Schwier Cottage,” having been owned by Christian and Christina Schwier as a rental property. And what might rent have been decades ago? Half of this double was available to rent for $11 per month in 1893.

Also of note: the address numbers seemed to change as frequently as the renters.

1898 Sanborn

Same property, 1898, northeast corner Harrison Street and Concordia, renumbered to 722 and 726 Harrison, numbers in parenthesis indicating they had formerly been 716 and 718 Harrison

As you wander the streets of Fletcher Place, it’s easy to miss the remnants of quaint streets like these that were butchered by the installation of the interstate. This neighborhood is seen at its best by walking or biking at a leisurely pace.

Fletcher Place

Preservation plan map of Fletcher Place (courtesy Indianapolis Historic Preservation Commission)

Don’t miss Sharon Butsch Freeland’s HI Mailbag column about Fletcher Place and Wood Lawn

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About the Author

Tiffany Benedict Browne is the founder and driving force behind HistoricIndianapolis.com. She loves learning, sharing and inspiring Indy's stories.

5 Comments on "Friday Favorite: Brick Double, Fletcher Place"

  1. Bob Palma April 1, 2016 at 7:41 am · Reply

    Another interesting article, Tiffany; thanks. BP

  2. Sharon Butsch Freeland April 1, 2016 at 11:41 am · Reply

    I like how the front entrances to each side of this charming brick double face different directions, giving the building more of a single-family appearance at first. Undoubtedly, the floor plans inside are identical (although mirror vision). I would imagine having doors on different exterior walls probably gives the occupants slightly more privacy, as well, since they wouldn’t necessarily notice it every time someone entered or exited the front door of the other side.
    .
    This brings up a subject for conversation. In Indianapolis, the custom from early times has been to call 2-family residences in which the units are side by side “doubles,” and to call 2-family residences in which the units are one above the other “duplexes.” People who have moved to Indianapolis from other cities seem perplexed by this practice. Apparently in many other cities, all 2-family residences are called “duplexes,” regardless of the physical arrangement of the two units. I find it helpful to know the location of the units immediately, just by hearing it referred to as either a “double” or a “duplex.”

  3. Jess McGuire April 1, 2016 at 12:28 pm · Reply

    Any info on its current status? It doesn’t appear to be currently occupied….

  4. Tom Holt April 2, 2016 at 2:31 pm · Reply

    It’s been basically empty and had very little done to it for as long as I’ve been in the neighborhood (2005). It’s much like the house on Lord St opposite this one, also owned by the same person.

    • Sharon Butsch Freeland April 2, 2016 at 10:10 pm · Reply

      The owner of 722-726 Harrison Street does not own the similar looking brick house at 725 Lord Street. At least, it’s not his name that appears on property tax records. He DOES own 737 Lord Street, 319 S. Davidson Street, and the commercial building at 802 Lord Street. The commercial building was built in 1915 by the Standard Oil Company of Indiana.

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