Sarah Gibbs House
10313 West Street
—Written by Gail Drabant
This house is significant to the historic architecture since it is the only Second Empire style house in Richmond. It is located at 10313 West Street. The house has been plaqued by the McHenry County Historical Society, so additional information is available other than what is presented here.
Sarah Gibbs built the house circa 1885 after her husband, Herman Gibbs, and her three children had preceded her in death. Herman was a Civil War colonel. Herman and Sarah were farming settlers who came to Richmond in 1843. In 1845, Herman purchased the lots on the southeast Comer of Broadway and Main streets (the current site of the Kruse Hardware store and Memorial Hall) and built a hotel?The Richmond House. Later, his son-in-law, John Wray, took over management and ownership of the hotel.
Two out of three of Herman and Sarah’s children married and had children before their deaths, so there are surviving relatives. Ella Gibbs married John Wray who was the hotelkeeper as previously mentioned. John and Ella had two children, John and Guy. Mary Gibbs married Edwin Potter and had one child,’Mary, who married James Thomas a. T.) Bower, son of Elijah A. Bower.
Through three generations of Bowers, this house remained in the family for several years until the current owners, the Dixons, bought it in the late 1980s. Not only was J, Thomas Bower the postmaster, but three generations of Bowers were postmasters for Richmond. The most recent, Thomas C. Bower, grew up in this house and with his wife, Gwen, still reside in Richmond.