Matagorda County Recorded
Texas Historic Landmark

 

Hensley-Gusman Home

 

2120 6th Street

285854.47N        955751.15W

 

James Robert Gusman Family

Mayor Emeritus Richard C. Gusman



 


HENSLEY-GUSMAN HOUSE

ALEXANDER D. HENSLEY  (1859-1947)  PURCHASED  LAND  AT THIS
SITE  IN JANUARY 1898, WITH HIS WIFE MAGGIE (1875-1960).
HE ASKED HIS BROTHER, ARCHITECT HENRY HENSLEY, TO DESIGN
THIS HOUSE TO CATCH BREEZES FROM ANY DIRECTION.

BUILT IN 1905 BY THE ALAMO LUMBER COMPANY, THE
HOUSE IS A FINE LOCAL EXAMPLE OF A VICTORIAN-ERA
RESIDENCE, WITH STYLISTIC INFLUENCES OF THE QUEEN ANNE
PERIOD. IT FEATURES A DISTINCTIVE OCTAGONAL PLAN, WITH
PORCHES PROVIDING ADDITIONAL SPACES TO COMPLETE THE
OCTAGON. BECAUSE OF IT UNUSUAL FLOOR PLAN, THE HOUSES
CENTRAL LIVING ROOM CONTAINS EIGHT DOORS BUT NO
WINDOWS; FOUR OF THE DOORS OPEN INTO THE CORNER
PORCHES. PROMINENT FEATURES INCLUDE A CROSS-GABLE
ROOF WITH WOOD SHINGLED GABLE ENDS, AND DECORATIVE
WOOD BRACKETS AT CUTAWAY CORNERS ABOVE CORNER
WINDOWS. THE ORIGINAL WOODEN PORCH FLOORS WERE
REPLACED WITH CONCRETE IN THE 1930S. BUT THE DECORA-
TIVE WOOD COLUMNS AND DOORS REMAIN.

RETAIL SALESMAN JAMES ROBERT GUSMAN (1862-1944), HIS
WIFE BETTIE AMANDA HARRINGTON (1864-1948) AND THEIR
CHILDREN MOVED TO BAY CITY FROM WEIMAR IN 1911.
THEY BROUGHT THE HOUSE FROM THE HENSLEYS IN 1919,
AND IT REMAINED IN THEIR FAMILY FOR GENERATIONS.

RECORDED TEXAS HISTORIC LANDMARK-1993

Typed by Faye Cunningham

The Hensley-Gusman home is a Greek Cross or hexagonal-designed which was built for A. D. Hensley in 1905. The house was designed by Hensley's brother, an architect, and was sold nine years later to J. R. Gusman. It is a one-story frame, gabled-roofed structure of Greek Cross plan with five octagonal rooms and four cross walls; four hexagonal entrance porches have delicate turned posts and hipped roofs.

Orson Squire Fowler, an early New York architect, built an octagonal home for himself in New York and recommended this design as an architectural panacea which would be unusually cheap, efficient, and convenient.

Historic Matagorda County, Volume I, page 231



 

 

Copyright 2011 - Present by Carol Sue Gibbs
All rights reserved

Created
Sep. 5, 2011
Updated
Dec. 4, 2012
   

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