Status: Preserved

Address: 1094 Poplar Avenue (formerly 217 North Waldran Boulevard), Memphis

Built: 1901

Architectural Style: Queen Anne

Original Function/Purpose: Residential

The Abraham Lowenstein House was placed on the National Register on Jan. 5, 1984. (Photo courtesy of Wanda Bostick Little.)

History: The house was originally built for Abraham L. Lowenstein, one of four brothers who founded the Lowenstein department store chain in Memphis. The house changed owners in 1923 when it was purchased by the Beethoven Club, the oldest organization of music lovers in the city. For twenty years it was used for instrumental practice and recitals. The house was sold again in 1945 to the Elizabeth Club, an offshoot of the Nineteenth Century Club that served as a boarding house for working women during World War II; at one point it was reported that 33 such “girls” lived there. Jack and Sara Clemons bought the house in 1967 and rented it for a number of years to the University of Tennessee School of Pharmacy’s chapter of the Kappa Psi Pharmacy Fraternity. The 37-room mansion sold in 1983 to Charles and Martha Long who renovated the house at considerable expense; it was possibly “the largest historic home in Memphis to be renovated solely with private money.” The Longs created a number of bed and breakfast rooms in the house and rented the first floor for conferences, receptions, banquets, and the like. By 1995 the house and grounds also accommodated a $12 per night youth hostel, as well as four part-time employees. The property was sold to Serenity Recovery Centers in 2000 and has been assigned the address of another building on Poplar instead of its original Waldran address.


City Council District: 7

Super District: 8

County Commission District: 8