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The Teufels

Harry Peter Teufel was born in Allegheny City on July 21, 1875. He was one of at least two children of Frank Teufel, a beer salesman born in Berlin, Germany and Gertrude Teufel, from Alsace-Loraine. The Teufel family lived on East Ohio Street near Cedar Avenue, in Deutschtown, during at least part of Harry’s childhood.

In 1896, at 21, Teufel married Margaret I. Mittendorf, 26. Mittendorf was born in Ohio in about 1870. During at least part of her childhood, she and her parents and siblings lived on a farm in Ohio township, Monroe County, along the Ohio River in the southeastern part of the state. Her parents were Benjamin Mittendorf, a German immigrant, and Susan Mittendorf, born in Ohio to immigrants from Wurtemburg and Switzerland.

Harry and Margaret Teufel appear to have had no children. After marrying, the couple lived near the present site of Allegheny General Hospital, and then in an apartment at 409 East Ohio Street in Deutschtown. Harry Teufel began working as a clerk for the Pittsburgh Gage & Supply Company, which made railroad, mill and mining supplies. The company’s offices were at 309 Water Street (Fort Pitt Boulevard), Downtown.

The Teufels lived in Beaver Falls, Beaver County, between about 1903 and 1906, while Harry Teufel ran the Windsor Hotel at 10th Avenue and 11th Street there. Returning to Pittsburgh, Teufel managed a hotel at 1317 Reedsdale Street on the Northside, at or near the present site of the north end of the West End Bridge. Census records from 1910 show that he and Margaret Teufel lived in the building with a nephew, a servant and a cook. Harry Teufel ran the Larkins Hotel at the corner of Sixth Avenue and Grant Street, Downtown, between approximately 1912 and 1915. He was also the proprietor of Ward’s Hotel in Tyrone, Blair County, at some point.

Teufel returned to the Pittsburgh Gage & Supply Company in about 1915, working as a clerk. He and Margaret Teufel rented an apartment in the Kinder Building at Western Avenue and Galveston Street. Harry Teufel became a salesman with the company in 1917 or 1918, around the time that he purchased an older dwelling at 840 North Lincoln Avenue and commissioned its remodeling with Spanish Eclectic and Mission influences.

The Teufels’ purchase and remodeling of 840 North Lincoln Avenue represented a considerable investment within a short time, and suggests that the couple did well financially in the second half of the 1920s. It is possible that Harry Teufel was able to save a significant amount of money while running hotels between about 1903 and 1915. It is also possible that Teufel enjoyed an increase in income as a result of the surge in industrial activity that was part of preparation for World War I, and a result of the war itself.

The 1920 census recorded Harry P. Teufel, 44, and Margaret Teufel, 49, at 840 North Lincoln Avenue. The couple shared their home with a lodger, Margaret Thomas, 21. The Teufels sold the house about four months later, in May 1920.

The Teufels lived in the Kinder Building again between 1921 and 1924. They lived in Atlantic City, New Jersey, between 1925 and 1927, and moved in about 1928 to a house that they purchased or had built at 3861 Perrysville Avenue in the Observatory Hill area. Harry P. Teufel appears to have left the Pittsburgh Gage & Supply Company, and did not work again. The couple moved in about 1931 to an apartment at 12 East North Avenue.

Harry Teufel died on June 4, 1933, at 58. Pittsburgh newspapers reported that he died “suddenly,” but did not state the cause of his death.

Margaret Teufel lived in apartments and rented rooms in the Central North Side for several years after she was widowed. She appears to have died or left Pittsburgh in about 1941.

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