Monday, May 11, 2020

History of a House- 2334 Newport Ave, Dayton, Ohio

Growing up, my family moved a lot. I never lived in the same house more than I'd say 5 years. The thought of a family owning a home more than that is special to me. For example, my husband's parents just sold their family home after living there for about 22 years!

This is 2334 Newport Ave in Dayton, Ohio.

(photo credited to

This home has 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and is 2004 sqft.

My great-grandparents Gerhard & Josephine Jeckering purchased this house somewhere between 1936 & 1937. 

(How cute are they in this picture?!)

I first heard of this house when doing research YEARS ago and reading the 1940 U.S. Census. In 1940, apparently, they'd already been living there for about 3 years. Gerhard was a tool maker for City Engineering Company. He lived there with his wife Josephine, their 6 children and Gerhard's sister Martha ("Aunt Mart"). 

That's pretty much all I knew about the place until recently. 

In 1964, Gerhard & Josephine divided the house. The sealed up the staircase, built an exterior staircase to go upstairs to the upstairs "apartment" and built a bedroom and bathroom in the back of the house downstairs as their bedroom. Apparently, Josephine was having trouble going up the stairs. Aunt Mart was still living with them so she rented the apartment upstairs.


Some more images from Google- shows the side of the house with the stairs and then the other side of the house with the addition in the back.

Josephine died in 1965 and then Gerhard in 1967. Their daughter Rosemary "Aunt Rosie" took over the house and Aunt Mart continued to live upstairs until her death in 1997. That's about when Aunt Rosie sold the house.
(Aunt Mart lived in that home from around 1936 to 1997! I can't even imagine!)

This got me to thinking who owned the house before my great-grandparents?

The house was built in 1925. I went on and looked the address up in the U.S. City Directories for every year from 1925- Current (as far as it would go). This is what came up: (note: these names do not mean they owned the property, just lived there)

1925-1928- William H. & Theresa Cross
1929- Earl & Elsie Bobo
1930- W.J. & Mary Digner
1931- Stuart M & Norma B. Cohoe
1932- Taylor & Thelma Rowland
           (I found a newspaper article from 12 Dec 1931 for Thelma (age 22) living at this
             address, died in a traffic accident)
1934- Ira B. & Mary E. Sinks
1936- Charles H. & Gertrude Pratt
Sometime between 1936 & 1937 Gerhard & Josephine Jeckering bought it and lived there until their deaths in 1965 & 1967. 
1967-1997- Rosemary Jeckering
1998-2001- Verla I. Smiley
Last time the home was purchased was Oct 2001 (according to many sources online)

The fact that so many people lived in the home between 1929 and 1936, I want to believe the home was just a rental.

The Jeckering family owned the home from 1936-1997! That is a long time- 61 years! I had absolutely no idea that house was in my family for SO long! I really hope to visit it someday when I make it back to Dayton. 


  1. My grandma's dad died when she was 2. Her mother moved her 3 boys and my Grandma into a small house in a very small town about 30 miles southeast of Indianapolis. When Grandma married, they moved to another town about ten miles away. After about a year, my great grandma started having health issues, and my grandparents moved back to help her. Grandma remained there until she passed at the age of 92. So other than when they lived in Fountaintown, Grandma lived in that one house for NINETY YEARS! Even more, she and grandpa raised 6 kids and took care of "Grandma E" in a 2 bedroom house with no indoor plumbing.

    So many memories there. So many Christmas dinners. I can still remember the smell of grandpa's tobacco, and his workshop out back. One of my cousins bought the house when Grandma died, but I haven't been inside since then.

    1. That is amazing!!! I can't imagine! It's amazing the effect "smell" memories have on us throughout our lives!