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Historic Harrison Hill Home & Garden Tour

In celebration of their official listing on the National Register of Historic Places, the Harrison Hill Neighborhood Association will host a Home & Garden Tour on Saturday, June 11th from 10am to 4pm. “Our last Home Tour in 2015 was a 100-year-old birthday party for our neighborhood. Our recent recognition on the National Register gives us another exciting reason to welcome people into our beautiful neighborhood and historic homes,” stated Alex Krouse, President of the Harrison Hill Neighborhood Association.

A section of the original pamphlet advertising the Harrison Hill subdivision. Hilgeman & Schaaf were partners who developed many of the historical neighborhoods in Fort Wayne but Harrison Hill was the largest at that point. It was the first to incorporate park-like settings in all areas of the neighborhoods.

Developed in 1915 by Frank Hilgeman and Albert Schaaf, the Harrison Hill Neighborhood is located south of downtown Fort Wayne in the popular 46807 zip code. Hilgeman and Schaaf had previously designed Arcadia Court (1912), Oak Wood Place (1913), Oak Dale Place (1913), and Englewood Court (1914); they eventually went on to complete Southwood Park in 1917.

One of the stately Colonial Revival homes being featured on the upcoming Home and Garden Tour was actually home to Schaaf and his family. Many of the original 1918 details of this home are preserved, such as the front door and window surround, hardwood floors, moldings, laundry chute, and third floor walk-up attic. It also features two staircases; the back one was intended for the family housemaid, flowing from the kitchen to the maid’s quarters.

The property Harrison Hill was once the Moellering Family Farm and Brickyard. It sat 35 to 50 feet higher than the sidewalks around the courthouse, creating a hill on South Harrison Street that provided views of downtown Fort Wayne to its north and the countryside to its south (hence the name Harrison Hill). To this day, the farmhouse remains in the neighborhood and soil in this area still has a lot of clay in it as a result of the brickyard.

In addition to its designation on the National Register, the Harrison Hill Neighborhood also received a City of Fort Wayne Neighborhood Grant last year to develop park space into the Harrison Hill Triangle Park. Developers of the neighborhood planned the layout with public green space in mind. Large grassy boulevards span the middle of South Harrison Street, along with oversized easements that run between Cornell and Seminole Circles. Krouse explained that the Harrison Hill Neighborhood Association regularly utilizes these public spaces for neighborhood events, such as the annual “Summer Concert in the Boulevard.”

The Home & Garden Tour in June will welcome attendees into ten historic homes and gardens, two churches, and all the green spaces throughout the neighborhood. Local artists will sell their work at an art market hosted by Bread and Circus. Food trucks will offer lunch and snacks to those wandering through the neighborhood. Tickets can be bought in advance for $15 at HarrisonHillFW.com or purchased on the day of the event for $18; children 12 and under are free.

Tickets can be picked up on the day of the event in the grassy boulevard of South Harrison Street just south of Redeemer Lutheran Church or near the Harrison Hill Elementary School entrance. Parking is available at Redeemer Lutheran Church, Harrison Hill Elementary School, and throughout the neighborhood.

The Waynedale News Staff

The Waynedale News Staff

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