George Purdy House
—Written by Gail Drabant
This Greek Revival house, located at 10306 Covell, was George Purdy’s house.. However, it is thought to have been built by his father, John Purdy and was the John Purdy family home before being his son, George’s, family home.
John Purdy came to the Richmond area in 1838 bringing his son, George, who was 12 years old then. George was the only child of five to reach maturity from John’~ first marriage. George’s brother, Francis, was the first death in Richmond in 1839. John remarried, and they had two children from this marriage. The first child, Sarah, was also the first birth in Richmond in 1838. His second wife also died. John married for a third time in 1845.
John Purdy and Charles G. Cotting have the distinction of originating the village of Richmond by laying out and platting Richmond. Note that George Street is named after John’s son, George Purdy; and Charles Street is named after Charles Cotting. George followed in his father’s footsteps in both farming and real estate ventures and took over all of his father’s business interests when John died in 1861. However, even before this, most of the land transactions were by George, not his father, John.
George married Amanda Fisher in 1863, and they had three children: Frank, George N. and Blanche.
The Purdy claim was primarily the west side of the village. They farmed the west side of town for several years. It is thought that John’s log cabin was on the south side of Broadway on the site of the L. B. Covell house. This Greek Revival house was their first frame house and was the family home of the father, John, and then the son, George. This house was located on North Broadway on the site of the E. C. Covell house. When Emmett Covell bought this property for development in 1901, the George Purdy house was moved to a site on Covell Street so that Emmett could build his Queen Anne house overlooking the Nippersink Creek.
The exterior of this house has remained fairly well intact in that doors and windows have not been altered. Note the characteristic front entry with sidelights and transom windows.