This building sits on property that was originally plated in 1837 and was sold for $18; the second recorded owner purchased the lot with undescribed improvements for $30 in 1840. In 1845, it was sold with unnamed structures for $400.
In 1846, the property was purchased for $1000 by Doctor Sylvester Ranney, who built his home and office at what is currently known as 9-11 South High Street, thus becoming one of the longest-standing structures in the village of New Albany. The original structure, which was situated next to a store on the south side, had two sections. The south section of the structure, located next to the store, was the doctor's office and the living quarters were on the north side.
In August of 1862, Dr. Sylvester Ranney who served in the Union Army as a Colonel in the war between the states, began purchasing the store and received the title after the final payment on April 8, 1865. On November 30, 1864, Dr. Ranney exercised his rights of ownership by planting two cherry trees in front of the store and then made extensive repairs in order to expand the store and his existing home and office into one structure.
Scarcely were the repairs completed when the building caught fire on July 7, 1865, and portions of the uninsured house burnt to the ground. The loss was estimated to be about $2,000. Even though Dr. Ranney was recovering from a "congestion fever" and quite weak, he immediately hired a contractor to begin to rebuild. You see before you the results of that effort, which was completed on December 18, 1865.
The northern portion of the building was used as the doctor's office and residence while the southern portion was used for patients who needed overnight care.
Three generations of the Ranney family have lived in this home 1856 until 1940: Dr. Sylvester Ranney and his first wife, Mary E. Campbell Ranney, and their son, Boivin; Dr. Ranney and his second wife, Mary B. Thompson Ranney; Boivin Ranney and his wife, Cordelia Strait Ranney and their three children, Jesse, William and Clark Ranney.
William Ranney, a bachelor, lived in the home until 1940. Upon his demise, the home sold to settle the estate. Since then, the building has been utilized as two apartments from 1940 until 1998 when it was purchased and remodeled into office space by Stephen B. Ogle & Associates.
The architecture of the Ranney House is a combination of early nineteenth century and Victorian which was probably as a result of the rebuilding process after the fire causing the two styles to be combined.
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