812 Galveston Avenue is a three story Italianate style red brick house occupying a 19.01′ wide by 96.18′ to 96.19′ deep lot located in the Allegheny West section of the city of Pittsburgh.
Theodore H. Nevin, a bank president and paint manufacturer, had the row of houses that includes 812 Galveston Avenue built between 1881 and 1884. Nevin, who lived in Sewickley, built the row of houses as rental property. Early occupants of 812 Galveston Avenue included the family of John Blue, a boiler setter.
812 Galveston Avenue was originally known as 112 Grant Avenue.
Detailed information on the ownership history, age, first owner, and early occupants of 812 Galveston Avenue follows.
- November 26, 1861
- August 28, 1863
- July 7, 1874
- December 17, 1919
- February 2, 1920
- January 31, 1952
- December 15, 1969
- July 27, 1982
- June 29, 1984
- October 16, 1989
John and Abigail Irwin of the city of Allegheny to Theodore H. Nevin, Robert P. Nevin, and Samuel M. Finley, all of Allegheny County, $1700. This deed conveyed a lot of ground bounded by Tremont Street (later Grant Avenue, now Galveston Avenue), an unnamed 20′ wide alley (later Manilla Street, now Maolis Way), and Central Street (later Lincoln Avenue and Lynndale Avenue, now North Lincoln Avenue). The lot measured 140 ‘9.575″ along Grant Street, 96’5.125″ along the alley, 140’9.575″ along the eastern lot line, and 96’5.125″ along Central Street. The property conveyed consisted of Lots 43, 44, 45, and 46 in John Irwin’s Plan of the Rope Walk, later recorded in Plan Book Volume 2, Page 173.
(Deed Book Volume 165, Page 521)
Samuel M. and Sallie A. Finley of Allegheny County to John Irwin Jr., $967. This deed conveyed the grantors’ one third interest in Lots 43, 44, 45, and 46 in John Irwin’s Plan, and in other property on Western Avenue.
(DBV 166, P 300)
Martha Mary and John Irwin Jr. of Leet Township to Theodore H. Nevin of Sewickley, $15,000. This deed conveyed one third interest in Lots 43, 44, 45, and 46.
(DBV 330, P 318)
Elizabeth A. Nevin, widow, of Sewickley, to James J. Cunningham of the city of Pittsburgh, $1 and other valuable considerations. This deed and subsequent deeds conveyed a 19.01′ wide by 96.18′ to 96.19′ deep lot on the corner of Galveston Avenue and Manilla Way. The lot was known as part of Lots 43, 44, 45, and 46 in John Irwin’s Plan, and contained a three story brick dwelling known as 812 Galveston Avenue, with a brick stable in the rear. Theodore H. Nevin had died and in his last will and testament, dated October 19, 1882, and recorded in Will Book Volume 27, Page 325, left the property to his son Charles Finley Nevin. Charles Finley Nevin died and in his last will and testament, dated August 6, 1896, recorded in Will Book Volume 72, Page 148, left the house to his wife Elizabeth A. Nevin.
(DBV 2023, P 3)
James J. and Mary Cunningham of the city of Pittsburgh to Michael and Katherina Preininger of the city of Pittsburgh, $5850.
(DBV 2010, P 373)
Michael and Katherina Preininger of the city of Pittsburgh to Anthony and Rose Murlis of the city of Pittsburgh, $1 and other good and valuable considerations.
(DBV 3177, P 74)
Anthony and Rose Murlis of the city of Pittsburgh to George and Dorothy Liss of the city of Pittsburgh, $2000. This deed gave the grantees’ residence as 5721 Elgin Street.
(DBV 4517, P 336)
George and Dorothy Liss of the city of Pittsburgh to George Liss of the city of Pittsburgh, in consideration of natural love and affection.
(DBV 6562, P 507)
George Liss, unmarried, to Tulum, Inc., a corporation, $43,000. This deed conveyed 812 Galveston Avenue and 810 Galveston Avenue.
(DBV 6903, P 128)
Tulum, Inc., to Michael J. White, M.D., $85,000. This deed conveyed 812 Galveston Avenue only.
(DBV 8120, P 377)
Age of the House
An 1872 plat map of part of Allegheny shows that the lot on which 808-812 Galveston Avenue and 850-858 North Lincoln Avenue were later built contained a long and narrow building at the corner of Galveston and North Lincoln Avenues and four small structures, apparently stables, on Maolis Way. The stables may have been used by Theodore H. Nevin’s paint factory.
An 1881 plat map shows a brick and frame building at the corner of Galveston Avenue and Maolis Way. The 1881 map also shows that 850-858 North Lincoln Avenue had been built.
Allegheny County mortgage records contain no record of any mortgage taken by Theodore H. Nevin for construction of 808-812 Galveston Avenue.
The July 7, 1874 sale for $15,000 of one-third interest in the 13,577 square foot lot that contained 808-812 Galveston Avenue and 850-858 North Lincoln Avenue, at $3.31 per square foot, indicates that 850-858 North Lincoln Avenue had been built.
Through the Years
Owner & Residents
U.S. census records, Pittsburgh city directories, and biographical materials provide information on Theodore H. Nevin, the builder of the row of homes that includes 812 Galveston Avenue.
The 1890 manuscript census, which would provide information on occupants of 812 Galveston Avenue in that year, was destroyed in a fire following its completion.
The 1900 manuscript census shows that 812 Galveston Avenue was rented to a family headed by John Blue, a boiler setter.
John Blue and his wife Lizzie, both 55, had been born in Pennsylvania to parents also born in Pennsylvania. In 1900, John and Lizzie Blue had been married 25 years and had had five children, with all of their children living at the time of the census.
The Blue family’s children were Clara, 24, Stella, 22, John J., 19, Harry, 16, and Eva, 14. John and Harry Blue worked as boiler setters, and Eva Blue attended school. All of the children had been born in Pennsylvania.
The 1910 manuscript census contains no record of residents of 812, 810 or 808 Galveston Avenue in that year.
The 1920 manuscript census will be available for public review in 1992 and should provide information on residents of
812 Galveston Avenue in that year. Census records are sealed for 72 years to ensure confidentiality.
The following materials accompany this report:
- a copy of an 1852 plat map of part of Allegheny, including Tremont Street
- a copy of an 1872 plat map of part of Allegheny, including Grant Avenue
- a copy of a 1910 plat map of part of the North Side, including Galveston Avenue
- the obituary of Theodore H. Nevin, from the Pittsburgh Commercial Gazette, May 1, 1884
- biographical information on Hannah I. Nevin, from The Social Mirror
- the obituary of Hannah I. Nevin, from the Bulletin-Index, September 23, 1899
A Researched History
By: Carol J. Peterson
all photos by Chris Siewers, unless otherwise notedTags: galveston avenue