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|Healy as young man
Anders Christensen “discovered” the houses of T.P. Healy through his 1979-81 survey of building permits of houses in the Wedge (Lowry Hill East ) neighborhood of Minneapolis. His initial research found 30 houses, 27 of which are still standing. He then turned to researching other neighborhoods of the city to learn more about Healy’s life and work.
Anders’ research was written up by Trilby Busch in a Twin Cities magazine article titled “Legacy of a Master Builder” (Nov. 1981). A photo from the article shows the builder’s descendants on the steps of the porch of the Bennett-McBride House, a Healy-designed Queen Anne listed on the National Register. Anders continues to work with one of these descendants, John Cuningham, a Minneapolis architect, in tracking down more information about Healy’s background.
|3101 2nd Av. S., corner of the Healy block (1890).
|Hardware, 1893 Healy Queen Anne
The article outlines the story of Healy’s life, beginning with his birth in Round Hill, Nova Scota, in 1844. He later moved to Halifax, where he became a prosperous maritime shipper. However, disaster struck in August of 1883, when one of Healy’s ships was stranded in a gale off Cape Breton. Facing financial ruin, Healy and his family moved to the Dakota Territory, thence to Minneapolis, where he switched from building wooden ships to building houses. (For details, see article at http://www.sanfordberman.org/hist/healy/healyy.pdf)
Currently, Anders’ list of Minneapolis building permits taken out by Healy has 143 entries. He has compiled this list by searching through old building permits, then driving and walking around neighborhoods to confirm the information on these permits and to see which buildings are still standing. He has had the help of other architectural historians–Patty Baker, June Burd, Bob Glancy, David Erpestad, Paul Larson, and Dave Wood, and in recent years, Madeline Douglass, Brian Finstad, Sue Hunter-Weir, Ryan Knoke, Sean Ryan, Kathy Kullberg, Tammy Lindberg, Constance Vork, and Montana Scheff. It is his hope that by posting the information he’s found so far, other researchers will continue to help him build on this work.
|Fireplace in 1895 Healy Queen Anne.
The posts for this blog are derived from Anders’ building list, beginning with Healy’s first house (1886) and continuing through those designed by Healy, and later architects, ending with his death in 1906. Through these posts, we hope to document the progress of Healy’s career from the designs his fabulous 1880’s and ’90’s Queen Annes, through the post-1893 Colonial/Neo-Classical Revival houses, to the large architect-designed houses of his later years.