The Holswade Home


Holswade home, jpg.jpg

In 1890, W.H.H. Holswade built this imposing home on the
 northwest corner of 5th Avenue and 11th Street.

Photo courtesy Special Collections, MU Library


HUNTINGTON — One of the oldest established, largest and best-known
businesses in early Huntington was the three-story furniture and carpet store
 operated by William Henry Harrison Holswade at 943 and 945 3rd Ave.

Always known by his distinctive triple initials of W.H.H., Holswade
came to Huntington in 1873 and first worked as assistant postmaster
 for two-and-a-half years before buying out a business operated by
 E.E. Randall. At first he operated the store in partnership with
J.H. Poage, but he bought out Poage’s interest two years later.

An 1897 newsletter published by the Chesapeake &  Ohio
Railroad published an article profiling a number of
Huntington businessmen. The article described
Holswade as “one of the most prominent and
successful merchants of the city.”

It was common at that time for furniture dealers to also supply coffins.
Thus, Holswade was both an undertaker and trained embalmer.
 The C & O newsletter noted that he carried “all grades of
caskets, from the cheapest to the very best, and is
a most skillful and experienced embalmer.”

Holswade was a member of the Huntington Board of Trade
 (the predecessor organization that would become the
Huntington Chamber of Commerce) and was a past
 Grand Commander of the Knights Templar.

In 1890 he built a large home on the northwest corner of 5th
Avenue and 11th Street. The imposing house’s architect is
 unknown. In 1974, the Holswade home was one of
several structures demolished to make way for
construction of a new building for the First
Huntington National Bank. Today
that building houses the J.P.
Morgan Chase bank.

When W.H.H. Holswade died in the early 1900s, the furniture
business was continued by his son, J.F. Holswade, until
1915, when he leased the 3rd Avenue building
 to the S.S. Kresge dime store.


Note:  This Article and picture appeared in the Herald-Dispatch Newspaper on Jan. 3, 2023..


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