Gerstner-Dalrymple House (now Indianapolis Saenger-Chor)
521 East 13th Street
The alterations to this house were meant to make an Italianate design appear to be more Queen Anne. The Italianate bracketed cornice, round arch windows with incised foliate stone keystones and impost blocks are clearly original. The rounded bay, once topped with a cupola, and the porch were "modernizations." The character of the front porch has been lost but its original look was propbably similar to the still extant north porch. It was built by Anthony J. Gerstner, and served as his home until 1903.
Gerstner came to the United States from Germany in 1849. He settled in Dayton where he learned to be a tailor. In 1856 he moved to Indianapolis. Here he owned and operated the tailoring firm Gerstner & Raggi. Later, he bought out his partner's interest.
1904, John M. Dalrymple took up residence. Dalrymple (1846-1927) was president of the Indianapolis Saddlery Company, a post he held 25 years. In 1917 he founded and acted as president of the State Automobile Insurance Association. At his death, in 1927, he was treasurer of Methodist Hospital. The Sahara Grotto purchased the property after Dalrymple died. They gave the house up in 1942, and it subsequently was purchased by the Saenger-Chor, a private club, "dedicated to cultivating the songs of freedom and labor." This group remodeled the front of the residence to accomodate an auditorium.
Old Northside Historic Area Preservation Plan, 1979
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