Our research is ongoing, but we believe that this brick Federal style house with Italianate front porch was built in approximately 1864. While it is referenced on the 1873 Beers map as the "P.C. Hoff" house, deed and mortgage records suggest that the house was actually built by the land's previous owners, William and Sarah Johnson.
Hoff, who was described in 1898 as "a dealer in coal and proprietor of a livery establishmentÉone of the substantial citizens of this place", an owner of several properties in town, purchased the property from the Johnsons in 1867.
Nine years later, in 1876, Hoff and his wife Sarah sold the property to Myra Coryell, second cousin and wife of Martin Coryell (whose name appears on a plaque on the front door of the house). Both Myra and Martin Coryell were direct descendants of Emmanuel Coryell, original owner of Coryell's Ferry, for which this town and New Hope, PA were originally named.
Myra and Martin Coryell's descendants occupied the house until the death of their granddaughter, Mrs. Camille Erisman Bryan, in 1959. Mrs. Bryan deeded the house to the First Presbyterian Church in 1953 for use as a manse, or parsonage. She, however, retained rights to the second and third floors, and continued to live there for six more years. The church apparently made structural changes to the house on Mrs. Bryan's behalf in order to create a two-family dwelling. We are told that the house once had a central staircase in the front hall that led to the second floor.
We purchased the house from the First Presbyterian church in June of 1998, and have been having a wonderful and fascinating time doing restoration work and researching both the property's chain of title and the genealogy of the Coryell family.