a Huntington Landmark
Feb. 9, 2004
is a city of fine old homes, but none perhaps is as striking or
as unusual as the "Coin" Harvey house at 1305 3rd Ave.
it looks out of place in Huntington, a city built primarily of
white stucco exterior and architecture, which appear to be more
Italian than American, suggest it was built by an eccentric. The
date carved into the facade's center -- 1874 -- means that it
was built just a few years after Huntington became a city.
today there's a problem. The home is in danger. Its foundation
is weak and its roof needs repair. After that, it needs more,
much more. A non-profit foundation and other groups have taken
on the job of restoring it.
time is of the essence.
house was built by William Hope Harvey
(1851-1936), a native of Buffalo in Putnam County. He was a teacher,
lawyer, silver miner, resort owner, author and presidential candidate.
Mostly, he was a restless soul and today all but forgotten.
in 1894, he was a national sensation for publishing his book "Coin's
Financial School," which sold more than a million copies.
tried his hand at teaching at the age of 16, but soon began reading
to become a lawyer and was admitted to the bar at 19. He practiced
in Barboursville briefly, then moved to Huntington and went into
law practice with an older brother, Thomas.
fact, the entire Harvey clan from Buffalo had moved to Huntington
at the time,
Harvey apparently thought he would settle in Huntington because
the house he commissioned was built to last. But restless souls
are never satisfied.
whatever reason, Harvey moved to Gallipolis, Ohio, the very next
year. It's there he married Anna Halliday. After a brief stay
in Ohio, Harvey went to Colorado, became interested in silver
mining and started working silver claims.
in Colorado, Harvey became interested in the "free silver"
political movement. Increased silver production and a decision
by Congress to stop minting silver coins caused the price of silver
became a leader in the movement to demand unrestricted silver
coinage. That's where he got the nickname "Coin."
went on to run for president on a third-party ticket and eventually
began building a resort in Arkansas, where he died penniless in
Huntington home has been left to the E.J. and Lenore Kaiser &
David Gerlach Foundation. It and several other organizations are
working to get public funds to save and preserve the home.
St. Clair, a Huntington attorney involved in the project, says
the building may not be salvageable if the roof and foundation
aren't repaired immediately.
non-profit foundation is in the process of applying for federal
and state grants to provide basic and necessary repairs. But it's
seeking private donations as well.
can read more about "Coin" Harvey, the house he built
in Huntington, and how you can help
preserve Huntington's most unusual old home on the Internet at
or by calling (304) 525-5910.