The oldest building in 100 major cities in the US

The oldest building in 100 major cities in the US

In the grand scheme of old buildings, America’s are venerable babies. Travel to Rome or, if you really wanna see old, Jerusalem, and you’ll literally find 7-Elevens in buildings older than our country, with streets dating back thousands of years. But you know what? That doesn’t mean America is lacking in fascinating historic structures. We worked with our friends at NetCredit, found the oldest buildings in America’s 100 largest cities, and learned about 300 years of history through grand mansions, log cabins, and even a magnesium plant.

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1. Virginia Beach, Virginia
Broad Bay Manor, circa 1640

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Though the sprawling, three-winged mansion is generally considered the oldest European-built house in the Southeast, it wasn’t always so impressive. The initial structure was only one room, with 18-inch brick walls. The larger Georgian additions were added in the 1700s, and it is still a private home today.

2. New York, New York
Wyckoff Farm House, circa 1652

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It’s hard to imagine the concrete-and-brick streets of Flatbush as sprawling Dutch farmland, but that was what farmer Pieter Wyckoff purchased nearly 500 years ago once freed from indentured servitude near Albany. He and his wife Grietje raised 11 children here, and his descendants made a number of additions and improvements until selling the home in 1901. It was gifted to the City of New York in 1970, and major restorations were done in the 1980s when it opened as a museum.

3. Boston, Massachusetts
James Blake House, 1661

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Though the Paul Revere House lays claim to being the oldest house in Boston, this house just outside the city limits predates it by about 20 years and sits 400 yards from its original location on Massachusetts Ave. It was once the centerpiece of a 91-acre estate, home to English immigrant James Blake and his wife Elizabeth. It’s a rare example of West England country framing, part of why the Massachusetts Historical Commission awarded a massive grant to restore it in 2000.

4. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Boelsen Cottage, 1678-1684

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This quiet, nondescript cottage hidden under some shady trees in Fairmount Park actually predates the impressive Old Trinity Church by as much as 30 years. It sits on the west bank of the Schuylkill River, one the lone dwelling on a 100-acre plot granted to John Boelson in 1770. Though it has no official address, it is on the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places and can be visited from the outside at any time.

5. Jersey City, New Jersey
Newkirk House (Summit House), circa 1690

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Walking past the lime and mortar walls of 510 Summit Avenue just outside Begen, you’d never think the new-ish looking building was the oldest in Jersey City. It’s undergone a lot of changes through the years, including the addition of a second story, new windows in the front, and even a partial reconfiguration when the path of Summit Avenue was moved. It has served as an orphanage, retail space, and even a restaurant, though the space is currently vacant.

6. Newark, New Jersey
Sydenham House, 1711

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This private home was originally constructed in 1711 of sandstone and stayed in place for over 200 years without the use of cement. It was enlarged in 1836, then purchased in 1950 by D.J. and Elizabeth Henderson. They found a home with crumbling walls, fading windows, and a floor that had given way, but over the next decade they restored it to much of its former glory. It is still a private home and sits on the National Register of Historic Places.

7. San Antonio, Texas
Mission San Juan Capistrano, 1716

Originally named the Mission San Jose de Nazonis, this building was once set far out in East Texas as a mission for the Nazonis Indians. The mission ultimately failed, and the structure was moved to San Antonio in 1731. It sits on the east bank of the San Antonio River and is currently managed by the National Parks Service.

8. Norfolk, Virginia
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 1739

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It’s a sad and bloody history that befell the coastal town of Norfolk during the American Revolution when the British Navy decimated the city with offshore attacks, then revolutionaries burned the city to harm local loyalists. The only building that survived was this church, which still has a British cannonball lodged in the side.

Richmond, Virginia
St. John’s Church, 1741

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The historic St. John’s church is the oldest church in the state, originally founded in 1611 at Dutch Gap. It was later moved to Richmond in 1741, roughly around the time the Old Stone House (also often cited as the oldest building in Richmond) was constructed. The history at St. John’s is far richer, however, as it was home to the second Virginia Convention in 1775 where Patrick Henry famously yelled, “Give me liberty, or give me death!”

10. New Orleans, Louisiana
Old Ursuline Convent, 1753

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The French Quarter history most people are familiar with is at America’s oldest bar in Laffite’s Blacksmith Shop. But the oldest building in this treasure trove of 18th-century architecture is this convent on Chartres Street. The façade that’s now visible was actually the back of the original building, where the nuns tended to herb gardens hundreds of years ago. The herbs were used to help orphans, students, and soldiers at the local military hospital.

11. Greensboro, North Carolina
Francis McNairy House, circa 1762

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This simple, two-story home was said to have served as a field hospital after the Battle of Guilford Courthouse in 1781. Its historic significance led the Greensboro Historic Museum to incorporate it as a permanent exhibit in 1967, and the home was moved from its original location on Battleground Avenue to the museum’s grounds. It lost its original foundation and chimney in the move but is still considered the city’s oldest structure.

12. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Fort Pitt Block House, 1764

Once known as Bouquet’s Redoubt after the army colonel who oversaw its construction, this brick blockhouse was built to fortify Fort Pitt from nearby native attacks. Over the years, as the fort was dismantled, the blockhouse stayed in place, thanks mostly to the efforts of the Daughters of the American Revolution, which has owned the property since 1894. According to the Fort Pitt Museum, it’s the oldest documented structure west of the Allegheny Mountains.

13. Baltimore, Maryland
Robert Long House, 1765

Unlike a lot of old, historic homes, this row house in Baltimore’s Fells Point neighborhood wasn’t owned by an aristocrat or massive landowner but rather by a merchant named Robert Long. It was a rather unexceptional house at the time but has withstood years of development. The house was restored as part of the American Bicentennial in 1976 and is open for tours by appointment.

14. Washington, DC
The Old Stone House, 1766

When they were planning Washington, DC, George Washington and Pierre L’enfant toured the area negotiating with local landowners to build the streets. During this adventure, the pair stayed at a spot called Suter’s Tavern, owned by John Suter. For some reason, people remember them staying in a building owned by Suter’s son, which was in fact a clock shop. That building was (and still is) the Old Stone House, and the false memory is credited with why it’s been preserved.

15. Raleigh, North Carolina
Joel Lane House, 1769

Not only is this bright gold home the oldest building in North Carolina’s capital, but it also calls itself the city’s “birthplace.” That’s because its original occupant, Joel Lane, sold 1,000 acres of his land to the state to build Raleigh in 1792. The home recently got a colorful new paint job and serves as a museum of the piedmont’s history.

16. Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Single Brothers House, circa 1769

Life in 18th-century Salem, North Carolina, was a little different than it is today, where at the age of 14 boys left home to study their eventual professions in this long, two-story house on S. Main and Academy Streets. It was later used as a boarding school, apartment house, and home for unmarried women until the Old Salem, Inc. leased it in 1961. The organization restored the house, and today it’s part of the Old Salem Museum and Gardens.

17. Charlotte, North Carolina
Hezekiah Alexander House, 1774

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In a city notorious for tearing down its history, it’s a marvel that this two-story rock home has stood for nearly 250 years. It was originally the home of blacksmith and future congressman Hezekiah Alexander, and it lives on as part of the Charlotte Museum of History. The Daughters of the American Revolution began its restoration in 1949, and a second wave of restoration brought the home to its current state in 1969.

18. Lexington, Kentucky
Adam Rankin House, 1784

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It’s impressive the kinds of houses ministers could afford back in 1784 when the head of Lexington’s Pioneer Presbyterian Church built this two-story, open-townhouse home. It was also the birthplace of Samuel McCullough, who among other things gave the world Burrowes mustard. In 1971, it was moved to its current location by the Blue Grass Trust for Historic Preservation to ensure it remained intact.

19. Louisville, Kentucky
Zachary Taylor House, 1791

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Once upon a time, the boyhood home of America’s 12th president was part of a 700-acre estate on the Muddy Fork of Beargrass Creek. Taylor’s father used slave labor to construct the 2.5-story Georgian home, which saw five of Taylor’s six children born there. Taylor was later buried on the property in part of what is now Zachary Taylor National Cemetery. The home’s plot is now a mere 0.75 acres, and it remains a private residence.

20. San Francisco, California
Mission Dolores, 1791

The oldest building in San Francisco was originally named Mission San Francisco de Asis, and it’s the mission that ultimately gave the city its name. It gained the Dolores nickname after a nearby creek and has been serving the people of the city through earthquakes, fires, and a gold rush ever since. The mission still holds services and is home to a renowned choir and one of the finest rose gardens in California.

21. Albuquerque, New Mexico
San Felipe de Neri Church, 1793

Albuquerque’s adobe old town is one of the most unique historic districts in America, often overshadowed by the history in Santa Fe but equally as fascinating. Its oldest structure belongs to a parish dating to 1706, and this church building has seen all varieties of additions and restorations in its almost 230 years. It still holds weekly services and is open to the public.

22. San Jose, California
Peralta Adobe, 1797

This two-room shack in the shadow of the massive Fallon House Historic Site is the last remaining structure from El Pueblo de San José de Guadalupe. It housed San Jose’s first resident and mayor Manuel Gonzalez, as well as Luis Maria Peralta and his family. As part of the Fallon House site, it is open to visitors and furnished as it may have been at the turn of the nineteenth century.

23. Tucson, Arizona
San Xavier Mission, 1797

This church nine miles south of downtown Tucson still features original murals and statues from the years it opened. The oldest European structure in Arizona, it draws nearly 200,000 visitors a year and holds religious services regularly. But be advised: Much like in 1797, it has no heating or A/C. So make sure you dress appropriately if you’re planning to attend.

24. Jacksonville, Florida
Kingsley Plantation House, 1798

Motoring along the St. George River you may come across a curious, large white house sitting along the water. This is the Kingsley Plantation Home, a hidden gem in the lower 48’s largest city named after one-time owner Zephaniah Kingsley. Kingsley was married to a Senegalese woman, and when the United States took over Spanish Florida in 1821, he moved most of the family to Haiti since the US did not allow interracial marriage. The National Parks Service acquired the home in 1991, and it is now part of the Timucuan Ecological and Historical Preserve.

25. Chesapeake, Virginia
Warden Family House, circa 1800

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This nondescript, two-story wooden home was once the centerpiece of a 2,500-acre plantation in this city just south of Norfolk. The land originally belonged to the James family but was sold to William Warden just before 1800, who subsequently built the house. It is rumored to have been a civil war hospital and is a rare example of 18th- and 19th-century vernacular architecture in the area.

26. Columbus, Ohio
Beers Family Log Cabin, 1804

A little bit has changed in Columbus since David Beers built this little log cabin in the woods between the settlements of Franklinton and Worthington. Columbus became a city, for one, and THE Ohio State University sprung up right next door. The oak-and-walnut home now sits nestled among student houses, owned by only two families over the past 216 years. It is still a private residence, and the oldest home in town by over a decade.

27. Long Beach, California
Rancho Los Alamitos, 1804

Before it was the 300,000-acre Los Coyotes land concession given to Manuel Nieto from the Spanish Crown, this land full of small cottonwood trees was Povuu’ngna, a sacred spring-filled site of the native Gabrielino-Tongva people. Nieto and his family named the land Los Alamitos after the cottonwoods and built this house just around the turn of the century. The Bixby family, the ranch’s last private owners, donated the house and last 7.5 acres to the City of Long Beach in 1968.

28. Cincinnati, Ohio
Betts House, 1804

Back before Cincinnati was the Queen City, it was a lot of fertile farmland on the north bank of the Ohio River. One of those farms was a 111-acre plot belonging to William and Phebe Betts, who constructed what is now the oldest brick house in Ohio. Though it sits only a few blocks from city hall in what is now downtown Cincinnati, like the city itself it has seen its high times and decay. It’s now the focal point of the Betts-Longworth Historic District, and operates as a museum.

29. Los Angeles, California
Henry Gage Mansion, 1810

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Once surrounded by nearly 30,000 acres of ranch land, the oldest building in Los Angeles is now surrounded by… mobile homes? Such have times changed since this house was built so Anotnio Mario Lugo could qualify for a land grant from the Spanish Crown. Originally named Casa de Rancho San Antonio, it became the Gage Mansion in 1880 when Michigan attorney Henry Gage received it as a wedding dowry for marrying one of Lugo’s great-granddaughters. It’s now part of the Casa Mobile Home Co-op, and as private property is not open to the public.

30. Buffalo, New York
Coit House, circa 1815

After the British burned the town of Buffalo during the War of 1812, one of the first homes to rise from the ashes was this one belonging to city father George Coit. Coit was instrumental in getting the Erie Canal to terminate in Buffalo, and his home has stood as a historic beacon for the city changing locations and suffering years of neglect. It is zoned as a single-family home now, though recent proposals have suggested it may turn into a center for midwifery.

31. San Diego, California
Casa de Carillo, circa 1810

The finishing date of this house ranges from 1808 to 1811 as it’s not wholly clear exactly when Presidio Comandante Francisco María Ruiz built this small adobe for fellow soldier Juaquin Carrillo. The home has been under the City of San Diego’s flag since 1932 when George Marston restored it and gifted it to the city as a golf course. It still serves as the clubhouse for the small pitch-and-putt course in Old Town.

32. Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Tessier Buildings, 1820

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The cast-iron galleries and brick cornices adorning this row of townhomes make it look like a little slice of the French Quarter in downtown Baton Rouge. The homes are named for Judge Charles R. Tessier, who renovated the building to its current state after purchasing it in 1820 (some records indicate parts of the buildings may date as far back as 1762). The townhomes have been mostly residential since then and are currently used as private residences.

33. Nashville, Tennessee
104 5th Avenue, circa 1820

Few people downing margaritas at Pancho and Lefty’s realize they’re doing so in the oldest building in Nashville, in a space once used to free enslaved people along the Underground Railroad. The home that sits across the street from where the Nashville Predators play their home games was allegedly a safe house stop along the railroad. Today it focuses its efforts above ground, with one of the better rooftop bars in the city.

34. Honolulu, Hawaii
Frame House, 1821

Not only is this mission house the oldest wood-frame structure in Hawaii, but it’s also a very early example of a prefab home. The lumber for the house was measured and cut in Boston in 1819 and took over a year to make the trip around South America before finally arriving in Honolulu on Christmas morning 1820. The Mission House is now part of the Mission Houses Historic Site on King Street.

35. Cleveland, Ohio
Dunham Tavern, 1824

At first glance, it might seem appropriate that the oldest building in Cleveland was something called a “tavern.” But this early 19th-century farmhouse was a tavern in the old sense of the word, a stop for travelers along the Buffalo-Cleveland-Detroit post road where they could have a drink and spend the night. It grew into an important social gathering place as the city grew around it, and after serving as an artists’ house under the WPA, it became a historic site open to the public in 1941.

36. St. Louis, Missouri
Bissell Mansion, circa 1825

Probably the most fun you’ll have at any building on this list is at this mansion that once belonged to US Army Captain Louis Bissel. Though this impressive mansion set atop a hill overlooking the Mississippi River used to host military dignitaries and early St. Louis gentry, it now has a nightly murder mystery dinner theater where you can learn the history of the home while solving a crime.

37. Detroit, Michigan
Charles Trowbridge House, 1826

Charles Trowbridge built this house in 1826 for $2,500, which a few years ago wasn’t much less than you could buy a house for in a lot of parts of Detroit. He built the house for himself and his new bride Catherine Whipple Sibley, daughter of the city’s first mayor. The couple lived there for 56 years, and though it’s seen a number of other uses, it is now office space.

38. Ft. Wayne, Indiana
Chief Richardville House, 1827

This stately brick home once belonged to Miami Chief Jean Baptiste de Richardville, a fur trader whose mother was sister to the Miami tribe’s War Chief. He grew to become one of the most prolific traders along the St. Mary’s and Wabash Rivers and was the richest man in Indiana when he died. The home is currently open for tours and special events.

39. Laredo, Texas
Republic of the Rio Grande Museum, 1830

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Few remember the short-lived Republic of the Rio Grande, a state that in true Texas style sought independence from Mexico but only lasted a few months in 1840. Its capital was in this home on San Agustin Plaza in downtown Laredo, now the oldest building in the city and part of a thriving historic district. It currently houses a museum where you can learn all about the rebellion and brief history of the former republic.

40. Fremont, California
Rancho Higuera Adobe, circa 1830

Set in the rolling hills of a historical park in the East Bay, this adobe that once belonged to Fulgencio Higuera is among the last buildings from the old Washington Township. Its adobe walls are massively thick, nearly two feet wide with bricks measuring 22 inches long. The home is open for docent-led historic tours, where guests learn about the Spanish-Mexican era of California and the native peoples who lived there prior.

41. Chicago, Illinois
Noble-Seymour-Crippen House, 1833

Much like Chicagoans are divided by baseball and deep-dish pizza preferences, so are they divided about which home in the city deserves the title “oldest.” The southern wing of this farmhouse was originally constructed in 1833 when the land was part of the village of Norwood. It wasn’t technically “in” Chicago until 1893 when the city incorporated Norwood, so some argue the Clarke House, built three years later in 1836 in Chicago proper, should have the title.

42. Indianapolis, Indiana
James Ray-Buscher House, 1835

Indianapolis’ Lockerbie Square is flush with historic homes telling the city’s history. Most notable among them is the James Whitcomb Museum, home to the famed poet. But you’ll also find Indy’s oldest building here, a mansion once belonging to Governor James Ray. Though the home originally stood where the Marion County Jail now resides, it was moved to the square in 1977.

43. Aurora, Illinois
E.D. Huntoon House, circa 1830

About 20 years ago, two sisters were renovating an old commercial building on North Broadway to house their restaurant and catering business, when contractors came across an unusual find. Under the building’s plaster facades they found heavy timber beams, a style of construction not used since the 1830s. Through stripping away the old stuff and examining historic photos, they found a home underneath that once belonged to city pioneer E.D. Huntoon, now believed to be the city’s oldest building.

44. Memphis, Tennessee
Magevney House, circa 1836

If you’re looking to tour an epic, ornate mansion on your trip to Memphis, there’s a very large one complete with a visitor’s center that Elvis will be happy to welcome you to. If you want to see some Memphian history, you’ll be doing it on a much smaller scale at this white clapboard cottage, which belonged to Irish immigrant Eugene Magevny. You’ll also have to go on the first Saturday of the month, as that’s the only time the house is open for tours.

45. Atlanta, Georgia
Joseph Willis House, 1840

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Though we wouldn’t suggest you test the name out, this home belonging to early DeKalb County settler James Willis was once dubbed the “Bomb-proof House” by Union Army General Jacob D. Cox. He used the home as his headquarters during the Battle of Atlanta and gave the home that nickname after three families survived the battle inside.

46. Austin, Texas
French Ligation, 1841

Like any independent republic, the Republic of Texas had diplomatic offices of foreign governments in its capital city. The oldest remaining one was home of French Chargé d’Affaires Alphonse Dubois, who served as the French monarchy’s representative in Texas in the absence of an ambassador. The capital moved to Houston in December of 1841, and the home was sold in 1848 to Joseph Robertson and his family.

47. Tampa, Florida
118 Westland Avenue, 1842

The oldest house in Tampa might also be the only one that has sat at three different addresses. The original home, built by physician Sheldon Stringer, was on Jackson Street, but moved when Tampa built a new city hall on the site. It then lived in East Ybor City until 2018, when the EquiAlt real estate group bought the home, and relocated it to Hyde Park for the neighborhood’s historic designation. It now serves as EquiAlt’s headquarters.

48. Miami, Florida
Ft. Dallas Barracks, circa 1844

In Lummus Park on the north shore of the Miami River, you’ll find a set of squat stone buildings that look completely out of place under the steel-and-glass skyline. They’re the onetime barracks from Ft. Dallas, established here during the Seminole Indian wars around 1836 on a different part of the river. They were moved to the park in 1924 when an apartment building was built at its old location.

49. St. Paul, Minnesota
Old Muskego Church, 1844

St. Paul’s oldest building wasn’t even built in Minnesota, originally constructed by Norwegian settlers near Wind Lake, Wisconsin. The group outgrew the church after about 25 years and sold it to a farmer who in 1904 then sold it to the United Norwegian Lutheran Church. It was sent to St. Paul as part of the campus of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, where it stands today.

50. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Old St. Mary Parish, 1847

Though this church constructed by German catholic immigrants is generally considered the oldest building in Milwaukee with a confirmed construction date, the building at 325 N Broadway known as the Marble Hall may predate it. Some artifacts and photos found in its site date back to 1846, which would put it smack during the construction of the church. Whether it is, in fact, Milwaukee’s oldest building, Old St. Mary’s was put on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.

51. Houston, Texas
Kellum-Noble House, 1847

Amazingly, this house has withstood over 170 years of hurricanes, humidity, and massive development and still sits on its original foundation with its original mud-brick walls. It was once the centerpiece of a park with Houston’s first zoo and was also a schoolhouse during the mid-1800s. It’s currently part of Sam Houston Park and is open for tours most days of the week.

52. Minneapolis, Minnesota
Ard Godfrey House, 1848

This modest, 1.5-story home was built by Ard Godfrey to supervise the lumber mill at St. Anthony Falls. He lived in the home for only five years, and in 1909 it was moved to Chute’s Square where it remains today. The Women’s Club of Minneapolis restored the home in 1976 and opened it to visitors in 1979. If you’re planning to visit, come in May for Dandelion Day, where among other activities you’ll learn how to make tea and coffee out of the colorful flowers.

53. Dallas, Texas
Sharrock-Niblo Farmstead, circa 1848

When a housing development was proposed nearby, The City of Dallas protected this 170-year-old collection of log cabin buildings by deeming the limestone it sits upon to be city land. That ensured the protection of the farmhouse, cabin, chicken coop, and other buildings constructed from between the 1840s and the 1920s. The one-room log cabin, well, and root cellar are thought to be the oldest structures on the property.

54. Corpus Christi, Texas
Britton-Evans Centennial House, 1849

Corpus Christie’s Heritage Park is a collection of a dozen stately homes set among oaks and palmettos. All date from about 1849-1910, the oldest of which is this one built by the Britton family. It has a number of distinguishing features, among them light switches on the floor to control the electrical wiring in the basement, and a rocking chair said to have belonged to the pirate Jean Lafitte.

55. Kansas City, Missouri
Albert G. Boone Store, 1850

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This brick building was established as an important supply stop for pioneers along the Oregon and Santa Fe trails, serving as a store run by Albert Boone from 1854 to 1859. It’s undergone a number of ownership changes since then, but it’s now Kelly’s Westport Inn, an Irish pub with live music on Manor Square.

56. Sacramento, California
Lady Adams Building, 1852

Strolling the wooden streets of Old Sacramento, it can be difficult to figure out which among the historic old buildings is oldest. But the 1852 fire destroyed about 85 percent of the area, and the only surviving structure is the Lady Adams building, named after the boat whose ballast bricks make up its walls. If you’d like to continue the historic tradition, the retail space is currently available for lease.

57. Madison, Wisconsin
Keyes House, 1853

You might look at the name of this two-story brick Italianate home and make a passing joke about it belonging to the girl who sang “Girl on Fire.” But saying it aloud you’d almost be right: It’s named after onetime Wisconsin political boss Elisha Keyes, who among other things was postmaster under Abraham Lincoln and three-time mayor of Madison.

58. Portland, Oregon
Tigard/Rogers House, 1855

This historic home in southwest Portland shares half its name with the city suburb of Tigard, about nine miles south. That’s because Tigard’s founder — Wilson Tigard — had a brother named Andrew who was one of Portland’s early pioneers. The home’s original logs were, like so many things, covered with aluminum siding in the 1970s. So in addition to giving it a healthy red color, the siding also makes the home appear much newer than it is.

59. Las Vegas, Nevada
Old Las Vegas Mormon Fort, 1855

Long before Vegas was Sin City, it was a much holier site, one of the earlier settling points for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The Mormons were the first non-natives to settle in the valley, alone a small, spring-fed creek that once ran through the site. It’s now a state park near downtown where you can learn the area’s early history.

60. Stockton, California
Original Temple Israel, 1855

The central valley agricultural hub of Stockton isn’t exactly the first place one would look for swaths of Jewish American history. But during the gold rush of 1849 Stockton was a gateway city to the southern mines, and among the people who flocked here were a few hundred Jews from the eastern US and Europe. Their original congregation — Ryhim Ahoovim — evolved into what is now one of the three oldest congregations in California. Their synagogue was moved in 1905 to its current location to be used as apartments.

61. Omaha, Nebraska
Bank of Florence, 1855

The thriving village of Florence was once one of the most important settlements in Nebraska and was on the shortlist to become the capital when the Nebraska Territory was formed in 1854. Sadly, it lost out to Omaha City, and as Florence lost population, it was ultimately annexed by Omaha in 1917. Its bank building is the lone reminder of Florence’s heyday, even though the bank itself collapsed in 1857. It is now a museum where you can learn all about the city’s history.

62. Oakland, California
301 Broadway, 1857

It doesn’t get much more Bay Area than a building that once housed a wine shop turning into a vegan restaurant. But such is the history of the oldest building in Oakland, built by a French count and his wife who arrived in California to invest in real estate during the gold rush. They opened a wine shop in this building, which looks pretty much the same 113 years later, except it’s now home to Souley Vegan, a vegan soul food restaurant.

63. Anaheim, California
Mother Colony House, 1857

Though some might claim Walt Disney is the true father of Anaheim, that distinction actually belongs to German immigrant George Hansen who was among 50 early settlers to make their “heim” on the Santa Ana River. The home was saved from demolition in 1929 by the Mother Colony Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution and moved to its current location in Founders’ Park.

64. Denver, Colorado
Four Mile House, 1859

Once upon a time, travelers took dusty stagecoaches on long trips through the American West, and their lone oases were stage stops like this one, the final stop on the Wells Fargo Butterfield Stage route from El Paso to Denver. It’s now in the main attraction at the Four Mile Historic Park, where visitors can learn about the city’s early history.

65. Seattle, Washington
Maynard’s House, 1860

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Seattle’s oldest house isn’t surrounded by any fanfare or plaques. It’s not a historical museum, nor was it moved into its current site by the Daughters of the American Revolution. Rather, it’s an unassuming yellow house on a nondescript residential street in West Seattle that looks no different than most other houses on the block. Only it once belonged to Seattle pioneer Doc Maynard who used it as a makeshift hospital. It most recently sold in 2017 for just over $550,000.

66. Plano, Texas
Collinwood House, 1861

When the City of Plano threatened to dismantle this historic farmhouse a couple of years ago, it wasn’t for a gated community or office park as you might assume. Rather it was to make way for a new park pavilion in Windhaven Meadows Park. The city and preservationists ultimately agreed to move it onto private land just north of the park, where it is still undergoing restoration.

67. Boise, Idaho
O’Farrell Cabin, 1863

One of the original homes built in Boise, this one-room cabin was built by John O’Farrell out of cottonwood trees found along the Boise River. It stood across the street from its current location until 1910, when it was purchased, moved, and restored by the Daughters of the American Revolution. It’s changed hands among preservation organizations many times since then, and it’s currently overseen by the city’s department of parks and recreation.

68. Arlington, Texas
Jopling-Melear Cabin, 1863

Not far from the futuristic marvel of sports that is AT&T Stadium (aka Jerry World) sits an unassuming log cabin that lies on the opposite end of the spectrum. Inside Knapp Heritage Park on Front Street you’ll find the Jopling-Melear cabin, originally built by cattleman and farmer George Washington Jopling and his family. After Jopling’s first wife passed away and he remarried, he moved out of the cabin and deeded it to his daughter Jane Catherine and her husband Z.T. Melear. The cabin was moved from its original location to be the centerpiece of the historic park in 1970.

69. Reno, Nevada
Peleg Brown Ranch, 1864

This 3.5-acre estate spanned 620 acres when Peleg Brown bought it for $6.56 and a dozen heifers in 1858. He built the three-story Greek revival home for his family, and it is currently one of five ranch buildings on the National Register of Historic Places. The Damonte family purchased the property in 1940, only the third family to own the ranch in its history. It has been known as the Damonte Ranch ever since.

70. Wichita, Kansas
Munger House, 1869

Not only is this 1.5-story cottonwood house the oldest surviving structure in Wichita, but it’s also thought to have been the first substantial building of any kind in the city. Darius Munger arrived here in 1868, and his home sat in the core of the city plot, serving as a post office, community center, and judge’s office. Its second owner, W.C. Woodman, effectively swallowed the house in his Victorian mansion, and it was not re-discovered until the behemoth was demolished in the 1940s. It has since been moved three times and is currently part of Wichita’s Old Cowtown Museum.

71. Lincoln, Nebraska
Thomas P. Kennard House, 1869

When the sparkling new state of Nebraska established its capital in what was once the town of Lancaster, Secretary of State Thomas Kennard wanted to build a grand house to inspire confidence in the burgeoning new city. The result was this massive Italianate home designed by famed architect John K. Winchell. It went on to later be used as a fraternity house, boarding house, and private boys’ home before being designated the Nebraska Statehood Memorial in honor of the state’s centennial.

72. Phoenix, Arizona
Duppa House, 1870

Photo: NetCredit

Don’t let the chain-link fence and barbed wire around this house fool you — it’s not set for demolition any time soon. The fencing is only there to prevent squatters and vandals from damaging this adobe home that belonged to Lord Darrell Dupa, an early Phoenix pioneer. It’s survived 150 years of brutal desert heat and rampant redevelopment, and it’s protected by the Arizona Historical Society.

73. Toledo, Ohio
Casey Pomeroy House, 1870

Though the Toledo suburb of Maumee is ripe with homes dating back to the early 1810s, Toledo proper’s oldest building is this bed and breakfast in a 14,000-square foot Italian-style villa. It was built by a grain commissioner named Theodore Buell Casey and was allegedly the spot where Libbey Glass owner Edward Drummond Libbey met his wife, causing him to later move his glass business to Toledo. Libbey also later went on to found the Toledo Museum of Art.

74. Ft. Worth, Texas
Van Zandt Cottage, 1870

When Major Khleber Miller Van Zandt settled in Texas at the end of the Civil War, he set up his home on 600 acres just west of Ft. Worth. The land actually had this cabin on it already, so its exact date of construction is unknown. But it is the oldest structure in Ft. Worth still in its original spot, and it’s owned by the city’s parks and recreation department as part of the Log Cabin Village.

75. Durham, North Carolina
Kinchen Holloway House, 1870

Before the Civil War and for sometime after, the Eno River was home to 17 mills cranking out textiles and other goods. This house belonged to Kinchen Halloway, the miller at the Guess Mill nearby. He moved here after returning from the war and raised 10 children with his wife Mary Jane.

76. Garland, Texas
Tinsley-Lyles House, 1870

The oldest house in Garland was saved from the wrecking ball five years ago when local preservationists convinced the city to move it into Heritage Crossing alongside a historic rail car and train depot. It was originally constructed by W.A. Tinsley, who was key in Garland’s founding as he gave the right of way to railroads to go through town.

77. Colorado Springs, Colorado
McAllister House, 1873

When Major Henry McAllister headed west to help fellow Union officer William Jackson Palmer build a railroad, his train car was toppled on its side by intense winds. Intent to never let that happen to his home, he built this rock-solid English cottage with 16-inch-thick walls and steel beams, a huge part of the reason it doesn’t look a whole lot different now than it did when it was built nearly 150 years ago.

78. North Las Vegas, Nevada
Kiel Ranch, 1875

Vegas has always been a place with a heavy dose of sinister history. Even spots like this historic ranch north of downtown have a tale to tell, as it saw an early pioneer killed in a gunfight, and two of founder Conrad Kiel’s descendants shot in a double homicide. In the early part of the 20th century, the ranch was a popular stopping point for people seeking quickie Nevada divorces, and though it fell into disrepair in the 1970s it’s now a city historic park.

79. Irvine, California
San Joaquin Ranch House, 1877

The sprawling office parks and low-rise condo buildings that have become Irvine’s hallmark were once 110,000 acres of ranchland owned by James Irvine. This home sat on that ranch, constructed for $1,300, and is the first wooden home between Anaheim and San Diego. It is currently the Irvine Historic Museum, where you can learn how this ranch — that encompasses about a fifth of Orange County — became one of the greatest master-planned communities in America.

80. El Paso, Texas
Montgomery Building, 1881

Photo: NetCredit

El Paso was once very much the Wild West, with wooden sidewalks and false-front buildings lining its downtown. The last of these movie-set-like structures standing is the Montgomery Building, erected in 1881 right around the time the railroad came to town. It is currently Dave’s Pawn Shop if you feel like hocking some heirlooms while getting your history lesson.

81. Fresno, California
Fresno Daily Expositor Building, 1881

Walking down Fresno’s Fulton Mall, one wouldn’t have expected this flat-front, beige-walled building to be a slice of Fresno history. But Fresno history buff John Rupe discovered these ‘50s drab walls were covering brick that dated back to the 1880s, when this building was home to the Fresno Expositor. Rupe and the current owner are working together to restore the building to its 19th-century glory, and have already uncovered 12-foot arched windows and 1890s newspapers in the basement.

82. Riverside, California
Magnolia Presbyterian Church, 1881

Four years before Riverside was even a city, a group of Presbyterian pioneers established a congregation that met at the Sunnyside Schoolhouse. A couple of months later, they purchased a small plot of land on Magnolia Avenue for $438, then constructed a church on the site which opened in 1881. It still stands today and is home to the same congregation, which holds regular weekly services.

83. Tulsa, Oklahoma
Tulsa’s oldest house, 1885

Perhaps it’s the not-so-glamorous story of this home’s original occupant that’s led to having such a generic title. The small wooden house was first built by the Reverend Sylvester Morris, who local authorities mistook for a traveling whiskey peddler and shot him to death. Not wishing to relive that little bit of unpleasant history, the home does not bear his name and now sits as a historic attraction in Tulsa’s Owen Park.

84. Orlando, Florida
Rogers Building, 1886

If this Victorian structure were just a few miles down I-4 from Downtown Orlando, you’d likely mistake it for a set piece from the Land of Oz. But this onetime gentlemen’s club has nothing to do with theme parks and is one of the few remaining examples of Victorian architecture in the city. It was recently donated to the City of Orlando and is slated to house jazz and other performing arts.

85. Glendale, Arizona
Sahuaro Ranch, 1887

Midwestern grain magnate William Henry Bartlett built this ranch after completion of the Arizona canal, using his agricultural background to bring fruit farming to the Salt River Valley. The ranch’s first building was this adobe structure, built in 1887 as home to the ranch’s first superintendent Stephen H. Campbell. The ranch now has a number of other historic buildings and is open as a 17-acre historic park.

86. St. Petersburg, Florida
Brantley Building, 1888

The old Detroit Hotel on St. Petersburg’s historic block might make for a more visually impressive oldest building. But this wood house was where the people who built that grand structure lived, pre-dating the hotel by several months. It was ultimately moved to the Pinellas Pioneer Settlement in the Boyd Hill Nature Preserve.

87. Chula Vista, California
Albert Barber House, 1888

The yellow house at 151 Landis Avenue doesn’t much resemble the grand Queen Anne orchard home it was at its old location. The carpenter’s lace and metal cresting may be gone, but the home’s history is still there, home to early settler Albert Barber and later to City Councilman Abraham Eitzen. It was once surrounded by acres of citrus trees, but after its move from 138 3rd Avenue in the 1940s, the orchards disappeared just as quickly as the house did.

88. Santa Ana, California
Episcopal Church of the Messiah, 1889

Santa Ana’s oldest church began meeting in 1883 in the hall of a store on Fourth and Main streets. A few years later the congregation constructed this redwood-beamed gothic church, which has housed them for over 130 years. It’s one of the few remaining churches in downtown Santa Ana and holds regular services each week.

89. Spokane, Washington
1889 Building, 1889

The same year Washington gained statehood, a massive fire ripped through Spokane destroying most of its major buildings. This is one of 10 remaining structures of the 150 hastily built that year, which at the time served as a single-room occupancy house for men working on the railroads, in the orchards, and in the local mines. The Bodie House was renamed the 1889 Building in 1974 after the structure’s numeric inscription.

90. Mesa, Arizona
Pomeroy Building, 1891

Photo: NetCredit

Mesa’s first brick building was a center for local business when it opened at the turn of the century, but now it houses a very specific business: missionary clothes. Specifically, clothes for Mormon missionaries, for whom Pomeroy’s Men’s and Missionary Store is like Turnbull and Asser is to James Bond. With Mesa’s large LDS population, business is booming, much as it has for nearly 130 years.

91. Scottsdale, Arizona
Titus House, 1892

Famed Canadian architect James M. Creighton designed this house for California railroad investor Frank Titus in 1892. The home is the only Victorian house in Scottsdale and last sold for $397,000 in 2005. It is currently valued at just over $560,000.

92. Bakersfield, California
Hay Building, 1893

Originally constructed in the Victorian style, this three-story building has survived two major fires and an earthquake that claimed many of Bakersfield’s historic structures. It has been a furniture store, a clothing store, office space, and a number of other retail operations before its latest incarnation as the 1612 Lofts.

93. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Henry Overholser Mansion, 1903

Photo: NetCredit

OKC’s first mansion belonged to “the father of Oklahoma City ” Henry Overholser, who built the Victorian and Chateauesque home on a relatively remote plot of land a mile outside the city. It served as a headquarters of high society for many years until the family donated it to the Oklahoma Historical Society in 1972. Through a massive $750,000 preservation effort much of the original structure has been repaired, and it offers tours and educational programs all year round.

94. Irving, Texas
Howard-Beaufford House, 1904

If you thought historic homes had to be expensive, that’s not always the case. This gable-front-and-wing home built in 1904 by Joseph Howard went on the market back in 2018 and was taken off when the asking price of $245,000 had no takers. Depending on where you look, it’s valued anywhere between $188,000 and $222,000, all pretty reasonable for the oldest still-standing home in America’s 94th-largest city.

95. Lubbock, Texas
Tubbs-Carlisle House, 1908

This Queen Anne house was constructed by Isham and Texana Tubbs when there was little in Lubbock but far-flung desert. Isham was instrumental in the founding of the city, convincing landowners in Kentucky to sell about 640 acres that became much of Lubbock. He ran a ranch near the property before a freak blizzard killed all his cattle, later moving into overland freighting and construction.

96. Anchorage, Alaska
Oscar Gill House, 1913

Photo: NetCredit

The oldest building in Anchorage wasn’t built in Anchorage at all but rather across Cook Inlet in the little town of Knik by former mayor Oscar Gill. It was later moved across the inlet to Anchorage, where it now stands near downtown as a quaint bed and breakfast.

97. Chandler, Arizona
Chandler Bank Company, circa 1913

The San Tan Brewery sits in one of the original Arizona strip malls, if you want to call it that. The San Marcos buildings held several small businesses side by side when they were built over 100 years ago, later housing the Bank of Chandler and Bank One. It was converted into a brewery when San Tan moved in in 2007.

98. Gilbert, Arizona
Gilbert Elementary School, 1913

You know you grew up in the Wild West when you literally took a farm wagon to school. Such was the case when Gilbert Elementary opened in 1913, where students would hitch a ride on farm wagons to a local ice cream shop after class to avoid walking in the Arizona heat. The Mission/Spanish Revival structure is now the Gilbert Historical Museum.

99. Hialeah, Florida
Hialeah Seaboard Air Line Railway Station, 1926

Photo: NetCredit

As Henry Flagler extended his Florida East Coast Railroad into Miami, more train service was needed than his tracks could offer. Enter the Seaboard Air Line Railway, which connected Miami to the west coast of Florida and other points north. Though the rail line has since been taken over by Amtrak, this historic station still stands in Hialeah, just outside Miami. It is still in use for TRI-Rail commuter trains.

100. Henderson, Nevada
Basic Management, Inc., 1941

Photo: NetCredit

Enough with the pretty historic houses and rustic cabins … what better way to finish off this list than with some good old-fashioned magnesium-processing facilities? Toward the end of the Great Depression Basic Magnesium built the largest magnesium plant in the world in this town outside Las Vegas. Despite no water, no power, and no local services, 13,000 flocked here anyway in search of jobs. It effectively birthed the second-largest city in Nevada, long before Vegas was more than a dusty collection of missions.

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