In 1980, the Doerr–Brown House in Perryville, Missouri was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The house is located at 17 East St. Joseph Street.
Records indicate Arsan Gallier purchased the lot in 1875. It’s believed the house was built between 1877 to 1879. This is a brick L-shaped house containing two-and-one-half stories with a one-story on the side.
In 1896, Louis Doerr purchased the home. Interestingly, the house remained in the family until 1976 after which time Thomas B. and Helen Ward Sanders purchased the property for the purpose of a Perry County museum.
The Doerr-Brown House is a well-preserved Missouri-German-style dwelling. It has six rooms and sits on a quarry-hewn limestone foundation.
Victorian Italianate wooden elements decorate the entrance, windows and eaves of the rectangular two storied block. A photograph taken ca. 1890 shows a porch with latticed banisters and a pierced rail running around the porch roof. (Source.)
The lot containing the house was part of an original 51-acres Spanish land grant. It was donated by Bernard Laytown. The land was auctioned to the public in 1821.
The house is significant from a historical standpoint because it exists in an area where professionals or businessmen used to live. These people helped to promote the growth of the small town, which is the county seat of Perry County.
The first recorded dwelling at the site of the house was built by pioneer doctor, Richard S. Dorsey. Dorsey served in the Missouri State Legislature from 1828 to 1829. He was also the town commissioner in 1831.
From 1835 to 1875, the lot where the house was built was owned by a native of Germany named Hyman Block. Hyman and his brother, Levi, were merchants in Perryville. They had a store and cotton gin across the street from the house. In 1877, the taxes then were $200 but went up to $1,200 two years later. Because of the increase in taxes, it’s believed this is when the lot was sold to Arsan Gallier on which he built a house.
In 1896, after Louis Doerr established his own success as an owner of a general store in 1868, he purchased the house, which probably wasn’t the original dwelling built on the site. Still, his house represents what the local architecture may have been during that time period.
Louis Doerr was born in Perry County on September 5, 1838. He died at age 96 on December 29, 1934. His wife, Rosa Josephine Pfeiffer Doerr, died on January 12, 1921, at age 74.
Louis and Rosa’s great grandson was Christopher Samuel Bond, who was mostly known as Kit Bond. He was not only the Missouri Governor, but also went on to become a United States Senator and was even on a short list to be nominated to run for Vice President of the United States. (Source.)
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