Christian Heurich Mansion
Christian Heurich Mansion
|Architectural style||Late Victorian, Other|
|NRHP Reference #||69000296|
|Added to NRHP||June 23, 1969|
The house, built in 1892-94 by architect John Granville Meyers for German immigrant and brewer Christian Heurich. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The first two floors of the house are preserved, and include most of the original furnishings. In 1956, Heurich's widow deeded the house to the Historical Society of Washington, D.C.. In 2003 the Historical Society moved out of the house, putting the house on the open market. Amid rumours of plans to repurpose the house, it was bought and converted into a museum to preserve the original interiors. The museum is open for public tours Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 11:30, 1:00 and 2:30.
Born in 1842 in the village of Haina, near the town of Römhild, Duchy of Saxe-Meiningen (in the region of Thuringia), Christian was the third of four children born to Casper and Marguerite (née Fuchs) Heurich. Christian's father, was the local innkeeper which included being a butcher and brewer. Christian learned the trade from his father, in addition to several apprenticeships in his youth. By the time Christian was fourteen years both of his parents died, leaving him orphaned. He traveled throughout Europe until his older sister, Elizabeth Jacobsen, who was living in Baltimore, Maryland, convinced him to emigrate to the United States, where he would have a better chance of fulfilling his dream of starting his own brewery; he arrived in June 1866, initially joining his sister in Baltimore. In 1872, Christian went into a partnership with a man named Paul Ritter. Together, they leased a brewery from George Schnell at 1219 20th Street, NW Washington, D.C. Within a year, Mr. Schnell had died and the partnership between the two men had dissolved. In his 1934 autobiography, Aus meinem Leben Heurich writes that he was the one that did most of the labor of brewing, while Schnell entertained customers. Christian married the widow of Mr. Schnell, Amelia Mueller Schnell on September 9, 1873. In 1884, Amelia died of pneumonia.
in 1887, Christian married for the second time to Mathilde Daetz. It was with Mathilde that he built their lavish mansion at 1307 New Hampshire Avenue NW Mathilde worked very closely with the interior designers of the house, The Huber Brothers, NYC. Sadly, due to miscarriage and a carriage accident, Mathilde died in 1895, leaving Christian a widower once again. Christian threw himself into his work, creating an empire in the capital city. In 1894 he opened his new, fireproof brewery which had a capacity for 500,000 barrels of beer a year. The brewery, which rested on the Potomac River is now the site of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. The Christian Heurich Brewing Company was the second largest employer in Washington D.C. during this time, apart from the Federal Government. In 1899, Christian married Amelia Louise Keyser, the niece and namesake of his first wife. Twenty-nine years her senior, together they had four children, three of whom survived into adulthood, Christian Heurich Jr, Anna Marguerite (died as infant), Anita Augusta and Karla Louise. Together, they had a long marriage until Christian Heurich Sr died in 1945 at the age of 102.
- Heurich Mausoleum. The final resting place of the Christian Heurich family.
- National Park Service (2008-04-15). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- Peck, Garrett (2014). Capital Beer: A Heady History of Brewing in Washington, D.C. Charleston, SC: The History Press. ISBN 978-1626194410.
- Heurich, Christian (1934). Aus meinem Leben, 1842-1934: Von Haina in Thüringen nach Washington in den Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika: Lebenslauf und Erinnerungen (From out of my life, 1842-1934: From Haina in Thuringia to Washington, DC, in the United States of America: career and reminiscences). Washington, DC: C. Heurich. In December 2012, Haina became part of the town of Römhild. This village is not to be confused with the Haina near Gotha (also in Thuringia), nor with the Haina in the Waldeck-Frankenberg section of Hesse.
- Benbow, Mark (2011-06-08/updated 2014-09-25). "Christian Heurich (1842-1945)." In: Immigrant Entrepreneurship: German-American Business Biographies (a research project of the German Historical Institute, Washington, DC). Retrieved 2015-02-14.
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