SOURCE: Galveston Historical Foundation

April 08, 2016 10:37 ET

Galveston Historical Foundation Announces 42nd Annual Galveston Historic Homes Tour

GALVESTON ISLAND, TX--(Marketwired - April 08, 2016) - Galveston Historical Foundation opens the doors to Galveston's incredible architectural history through public tours of privately owned homes during its annual Galveston Historic Homes Tour. Tours will be held on April 30, May 1, May 7 and May 8 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tickets are $25 for non-members before April 30 and $30 after and are available online at Members of Galveston Historical Foundation can purchase specially priced $20 tickets by calling 409-765-3405 or by visiting any of GHF's retail locations.

"The 2016 historic homes set yet another record. This year we feature a house never before on tour and only recently sold out of the family," says Dwayne Jones, Galveston Historical Foundation's Executive Director. "This East End mansion and the others on tour offer a broad look into Galveston's history and architecture. Large, small, and everything in between. The 2016 Historic Homes Tour will give you a little bit of everything."


Homes Tour Home Base

Galveston Historical Foundation's headquarters at the 1940 Sears Building will also serve as the home base for this year's tour. Enjoy specialty food trucks, restrooms, cold refreshments and a covered area for relaxing during your Homes Tour weekend. While you're there, be sure to visit GHF's Architectural Salvage Warehouse for inspiration in your own home! Open daily during Homes Tour from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Cocktails on the Coast at Beachtown

Limited to 40 guests, this exclusive Homes Tour event treats you to an evening of great food, drink, music and unmatched view from Beachtown's Homes Tour showcase home. Held on Friday, May 29th from 5:30 - 8, you will mix and mingle with the property architect, homeowners and other VIPs while supporting GHF's Revolving Fund projects. $150 per person.

Early Bird Tickets

With nine homes and great special events, it's easy to find yourself with more to do than you have time for. This year's Early Bird ticket could be just what you need to make the most of your homes tour experience. These tickets come with a full tour ticket and are limited to 100 per day for $50 each. Tickets are available for both Saturdays of the tour and allow you to enjoy access to three tour homes from 8 - 10 a.m. Get a head start on your homes tour adventure!

Beachtown New Construction Tours

Beachtown prides itself on taking Galveston's historical architectural heritage into the future. Guests at this year's Historic homes tour will also be able to tour three homes in different stages of construction. See firsthand the craftsmanship and attention to detail in each of their spectacular homes as Galveston's rich architectural heritage is continued in this new development.


In addition to the eight homes listed below, Galveston Historical Foundation will be presenting select properties as part of its revolving fund program. These rehabilitations in progress show how GHF continues to preserve the islands history through inventive green technologies and stewardship.


Galveston County Treasurer James Stephen Waters hired architect Henry Collier Cooke of the Nebraska architecture firm Bourgeois Nitchner & Cooke to design this grand Victorian residence in 1893. The most prominent building on the block, the Waters family sold the house in 2012 to new owners who are rehabilitating the property. This house is an Early Bird available house and is featured on the April 30th History on Tap Dinner.


Noted as a classic example of post-Civil War construction in Galveston, cotton buyer Charles Albertson built this grand Greek Revival house about 1870 and lived there with his wife Catherine until 1892. Severely damaged by the 1900 hurricane, Ben Blum purchased the property and divided it maintaining his residence in the western portion and moving the eastern section for use as rental property.


Broker and grocery commission merchant Meyer Levy built this Victorian townhouse in 1883 for himself and his wife, Julia. After the 1900 hurricane damaged the property, Levy sold the house to building contractor Miles Bowden, who repaired the house for his home. The Bowden family maintained ownership of the property until 1969.


German immigrant and carpenter Andrew Pfannsteil built this elegant Victorian house in 1887 on lots he had owned and resided on since 1875. The new house, featuring half-timbered bays that resemble a Swiss chalet, replaced the existing house consumed by fire in 1885. The Mathers purchased the new house from Pfannsteil in August 1887 for the sum of $2400. This house is featured on the May 6th History on Tap Dinner.


Brick contractor Benjamin Barnes constructed this classic Gulf Coast side-gabled house in 1888. Residing at 828 Church, Barnes used this dormered cottage as rental property. In a series of ironic twists of fate, the house is owned today by the descendant of a family who occupied the property more than a century ago.


John Stowe and William Selkirk purchased the vacant corner lot in 1901 after the owner died during the 1900 storm. Between 1904-1912 Stowe and Selkirk, of the Galveston Savings & Loan Company, moved four small houses that had survived the great storm onto the lot. Italian immigrant and grocer Giuseppe Negrini purchased the houses in 1925 for use as tenant houses for African Americans.


In 1905, German immigrant Charles Marschner, and his wife, Marie, hired brick contractor Otto Haas to build this two-story building as their residence and business, the Texas Bottling Works. The building, which features a variety of architectural styles including decorative brick work and stepped parapet wall with ball finials, was restored in 1989 and designated a Recorded Texas Historic Landmark in 1996. This house is an Early Bird available house.


John C. McDonald, a public cotton-weigher, and his wife Minnie built this Craftsman-influenced house in 1913. After John's sudden death in 1914, Minnie used the house as rental property until 1919 when she sold it to real estate agent Thomas Blake and his wife, Anne. The current owners purchased the property from the Blake's daughter in 2013. In 2015, GHF recognized the rehabilitation of the property with a Sally Wallace Preservation Award. This house is an Early Bird available house.


Henry Hildebrand, president of the Anchor Milling Company of Galveston, built this two-story house in 1915 to use as rental property. The original insurance record for the house noted that the entire building was shipped from Michigan "ready to nail together." The manufacturer of the kit house, called The Fairmont, was the Aladdin House Company. Located in Bay City, Michigan, the company slogan was "Homes Built in a Day." Founded in 1906 by brothers, Otto and William Sovereign, the business manufactured houses until 1981.


Seats are limited at all special events with pricing, times and reservations available at

April 30 and May 6 -- History on Tap Dinners

Enjoy a specially created dinner, cooked by an award winning chef, in a Homes Tour home. Tour home owners will lead you on a special tour of the property while you enjoy a one of a kind evening in historic Galveston! $150 per person.

April 30 and May 7 -- Antebellum Bicycle Tours

Enjoy a guided tour through historic Galveston as you visit select Antebellum homes and learn the history of the people and community of early Galveston history. The tour will start at the 1838 Menard House. $15 per person.

May 1 -- Houston Grand Opera's "After The Storm" Preview

Free to Homes Tour ticket holders and held at the 1838 Michele Menard House, attendees will enjoy a 15 minute preview of Houston Grand Opera's new production "After The Storm." This upcoming play tells the story of Galveston during the 1900 Storm and Hurricane Ike.

May 7 -- Rehabilitation In Progress Tour and Lecture

Guests of this tour and lecture will enjoy early access to the 1915 Hildebrand Tenant House beginning at 9 a.m. Starting at 10 a.m., ticket holders will have the opportunity to learn about this Aladdin built home from author and expert Margaret Culbertson. $20 per person.

May 7 -- Mid-Century Modern Tour

Step back into the not so distant past with this special selection of mid-century modern homes on Galveston's beautiful Harbor View drive. Opened only for this special evening, these homes showcase the unmistakable design of mid-century architecture with some vintage fun, food and drink added into the evening! $50 per person.

May 8 -- Mother's Day Jazz Brunch at the 1880 Garten Verein

We celebrate mom with this re-imagined Mother's Day tradition. Enjoy a hearty brunch, door prizes, flowers, live music and a few surprises in the beautiful 1880 Garten Verein. $50 per person.

For more information on Galveston Historical Foundation's 42nd Annual Galveston Historic Homes Tour or any of the associated special events, please contact Will Wright, Director of Marketing & Special Events at 409-765-3404, or visit

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