North 10th Street, A 19th Century Tour

Note: This is the web-based incarnation of a brochure originally published in 1980. While the history is still very valuable, other information may no longer be accurate. Information updated by WayNet will be listed in this orange color.

205 North 10th Street205 North 10th Street

This Second Empire (French) mansard roofed dormered, brick structure was built about 1860 by William McWhinney who was listed as a clerk.

John W. Grubbs later acquired the property as a residence. Mr. Grubs was president of the J. W. Grubbs & Co. and is reported to have started several newspapers in the area.

John W. Grubbs was identified with the wholesale grocery trade in Richmond for nearly 33 years. Mr. Grubbs and I.R. Howard, both of New Castle, Ind., formed a partnership in 1860 when they purchased the wholesale grocery stock of James M. Starr. This early firm was known as Howard and Grubbs Wholesale Grocers and its store was located on the west side of Fort Wayne Ave. in the block north of the Pa. Railroad.

Mr. Howard withdrew and organized the firm of I.R. Howard and Co. Wholesale Grocers. The original firm operated under the name of John W. Grubbs Co. Shortly after World War I, the J.W. Grubbs Co. acquired the I.R. Howard Co. and moved from its old location of 200-205 Ft. Wayne Ave. In 1927, the John W. Grubbs Co. Disposed of it's business to the J. C. Perry & Co. Wholesale Groceries.

William F. Starr became a partner in the J.W. Grubbs Co., as John Grubbs was his father-in-law. Following the death of Mr. Grubbs, he became president and served as such for more than 30 years.

W. F. Starr, the son of Mr. and Mrs. James F. Starr was born in 1846 on his parents' farm on Chester Pike north of Spring Grove. He married the eldest daughter of J. W. Grubbs, Florence.

Mr. Starr purchased the house in 1910. In the mid 1900's, the house was converted into a tenement building and remains that way today.

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Text and illustrations © 1980, Old Richmond, Inc.

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Did You Know?

Singin' Sam, the Barbasol Man, (Harry Frankel) was the highest paid radio performer in his time. He was a Richmond, Indiana native and retired to Richmond before his death at the age of 60 on June 12, 1948.