Margarita Perez de Rodriguez, consort of Compana de Béxar soldier Jose Antonio Rodriguez, was given this land "in satisfaction of her constitutional allowance." She sold the property in 1851 to San Antonio postmaster John Bowen, who conveyed it to Auguste Kirchner in 1871. The house, built either by Bowen or Kirchner, appears on the 1873 Koch bird's-eye view map of San Antonio. Thomas Abbott, a shoemaker, bought the property in 1881 from his wife's family, the Heiligmans, who also owned the house to the east. Anna Schneider, a clairvoyant, lived here for many years. Following its purchase by the City of San Antonio in 1940, the house served as the La Villita project office and Red Cross Training Center.
The house is built of uniformly sized blocks of "caliche", a clay and calcium substance. The local building material, cut from the ground and dried, was used in the late nineteenth century.