The Byers-Eckels House

The Byers-Eckels House (HM1QR1)

Location: Newville, PA 17241 Cumberland County
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Country: United States of America
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N 40° 10.106', W 77° 24.057'

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By 1846, tax records show a two-story house on this lot. Anthony Byers purchased the property in 1851, and during his ownership it evolved into the Italianate Victorian gem you see today. The house retains much of its architectural integrity, including the gracious long windows and shutters, original doors, double-stacked porches in the rear, and early interior millwork. An unusual feature for a Newville house, a dumb waiter, from the lower level kitchen to the dining room on the street level, was removed in 1985.

When the Confederates occupied Newville in 1863, they stole the lead weights from the family's tall case clock, to be used in making ammunition. However, they missed the Byers family silver, pewter and woolen blankets, which had been buried in the rose garden. The property remained in the family for nearly 100 years. Anthony Byers's daughter Virginia married and Eckels, and she inherited the home after her parents died. Her son Deemer grew up here, and his family occupied the house until his wife, the former Becky Bricker, died in 1950.

Some of Newville's more interesting citizens have lived here. Among those during the late 19th and early 20th centuries were Virginia Byers Eckels Seitz, the first telegrapher in town, and her husband B. Frank Seitz, an actor, playwright, poet and resident eccentric known throughout the Eastern Seaboard. Seitz had been trained as a lawyer, but his day job was as the local agent for Adams Express, which was responsible for shipping goods by train throughout the country. In the 1980's, the house was occupied by Bettine Field Carroll Reisky De Dubnic, great granddaughter of department store magnate Marshall Field. The owner in 2008 is Craig Kennedy, teacher, author and historian.
HM NumberHM1QR1
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, February 19th, 2016 at 1:02am PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18T E 295549 N 4449215
Decimal Degrees40.16843333, -77.40095000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 40° 10.106', W 77° 24.057'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds40° 10' 6.36" N, 77° 24' 3.42" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)717
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 116 W Big Spring Ave, Newville PA 17241, US
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