Thanks Andy for creating this separate message topic.
The next time I see you I may ask for your assistance in linking to Flickr photos for display here that I've taken over the past couple of weeks. As you noted, the Rominger House, at 905 Samuels is completely gone and is now returned to raw land. A small c. 1960 Crackerbox type cottage in the middle (west side) of Bennett Street is gone and it's lot now smoothed over. Adjacent to the Garvey House (769 Samuels Ave.) on the west, the two garage apartments are gone. I winced a bit to see thousands of antique bricks set in soft lime mortar (easily scraped clean with a putty knife and ready for re-use) loaded up with an excavator bucket and sent off yesterday to the landfill. I personally believe that garage apartment to the north was older, maybe from the Garvey era. (1915 or earlier) The bottom floor walls were constructed of red bricks four or five courses thick, and it may have originally been used as a carriage house. Anyhow, it and all the bricks are now gone so any discussion about the matter is a moot point. The two small cottages near the corner of Bennett and Locust sit partial deconstructed. The white house of this pair dates from the early 1900's and features shiplap boards for walls and ceilings (Joanna Gaines of HGTV's Fixer Upper fame would swoon over this house full of shiplap) It also had six turned posts that I wanted four of them to reuse for our front porch but the hazmat remediation crew removed them and put them in a closed and padlocked container/dumpster headed for a hazmat disposal site. I tried to persuade one of the Embrey Development site managers to recover the posts but was told his hands were tied in the matter. If any of these posts had any lead paint residue it would have been minimal because I recall a neighborhood handyman scraped them down to bare wood and repainted them a couple of times in recent years. Again, yet another moot point. The small previously painted and sided red cottage due south has rare plank wall construction under a layer of vinyl siding and under an older layer of Cypress clapboards. (undoubtedly they were painted with lead based paint) However, the vertical planks which support the roof are unpainted, rough sawn nominally 1" thick Southern Yellow Pine 12 inches wide, and were nailed to the roof and foundation framing with square cut nails. (almost for certain dating from earlier than 1900) The Stick Style front gable ornamental window hood was destroyed by the crew as has been part of the porch ornamental work which matches the pattern of the ornamental work on the window hood. Both were heavily encrusted with thick old paint but they could be heat stripped with an infrared heat plate and repainted. It's my understanding that these two cottages will be gone by May 24th. Given that the protected Heritage Live Oak is directly behind the plank wall cottage, it makes sense to me to not use heavy equipment but rather to have a crew dismantle the house and salvage the plank ("barnwood") walls which might sell in an architectural boutique setting for $50 a plank or more. Some beefy dimensional floor joists (nailed together with square nails) could probably be salvaged as well but the Developers are decidedly not in the architectural salvage business. The owner of a southside business which sells old house parts came by earlier today but not sure if there's anything left that makes economic sense to salvage. A lot of hard physical labor and time go into deconstructing an old house so few are so disposed of.
Last, the back two rooms on the Garvey House were demo'ed yesterday. The 1886 Bird's-eye map of Fort Worth with a sub-section showing Samuels Avenue shows a small two room cottage on the Garvey House site at that time. It had an open porch with turned posts facing south. The much larger Queen Anne style residence was added in the late 1890's with a mix of stylistic details including Classical/Colonial Revival that was very popular at that time. It showed up in one of the Swartz Bros.' Fort Worth "Souvenir" photo booklets in 1901 along with other fine Fort Worth residences of that time. Mr. (William B.) Garvey had his grocery business at 214 Main during this period but later sold the grocery business and became an agent for fire insurance policies. That makes me wonder if there had been a fire in the Garvey House at one time because when I helped a former owner make roof repairs on the now demolished back portion, some of the attic rafters were scorched in places. It always seemed a little odd to me that the Garveys, who had no children, went from a 600-700 square foot cottage in the early 1880's to a 3,000 sq, foot Queen Anne in the late 1890's. (Mrs. Garvey received a gift of land from her parents, Isaac and Mary Cornelia Foster in 1883) Perhaps a larger house was built sometime in-between the early 1880's and late 1890's but was lost to fire? The Fosters resided in the large Italianate style house next door to the south at 761 Samuels. (in poor condition, it was demolished around 2003) It is my understanding that Embrey intends to add on to the back of the Garvey House and have a three story wall of windows facing west. Since its at the back, the new addition shouldn't compromise the historic front facade of the state and city landmarked home. Today, a 1960's duplex to the north of 915 Samuesl is being demo'ed. The Talbott-Wall house now sits several feet above the ground on steel beams awaiting its move which is dependent on the concrete piers and foundation being ready two blocks to the north at the northeast corner of Samuels and Pavilion. By the end of May, the demolition/moving phase of this apartments project should be completed. I look forward to the new apartment construction although the demolition activity has generated a lot of dust. Both my spouse and I have had dust cold symptoms over the past several days but the demo work immediately near us is thankfully completed.