East of 19th Street lies the East End, Galveston's most famous nineteenth-century residential neighborhood. Forty-eight blocks in the sixty-four-block neighborhood were designated a local historic district in 1971 (expanded to fifty-eight blocks in 1995), listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1975, and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1976. The East End is one of the great repositories of late-nineteenth-century domestic architecture in the United States.
In November 1885, a fire that began at an ironworks on the Strand was swept by a “norther” wind through the west half of the East End, destroying over forty blocks of housing. The reconstruction of these blocks in the late 1880s and early 1890s gives this sector of the East End its extraordinary architectural consistency. The architect of these two houses, Alfred Muller, a Berlin-trained architect who came to Galveston in the wake of the 1885 fire, displays the qualities that make the East End so architecturally distinctive. The two houses represent a standard typology—the side-passage-plan Southern town house—disguised with rotated corner turrets and a staggered plan that tried to capture the prevailing southeast Gulf breeze to the optimal degree, as is evident on the 18th Street side of the corner house. Muller seems to have left no opportunity for surface articulation unexplored. The stuccoed brick basement story with its arched openings was a Muller trademark.