Our History

1787

Georgian style house built by Gottlieb Sehner II.

1801-1813

Residence of Andrew Ellicott.

1803

Ellicott met with Capt. Meriwether Lewis (of the Lewis & Clark Expedition) to teach him surveying techniques to use on upcoming expedition.

1914 & 1920

House altered for social club (The Otters Lodge).

1962

Urban renewal plans for Queen Street project revealed.  Includes demolition of house to make room for Prince Street parking garage.

1966

Local citizens form group to oppose demolition.  Becomes the Historic Preservation Trust of Lancaster County.

1968

House temporarily saved from demolition.

1972

House listed on National Register of Historic Places.

1973

Trust purchases house from Redevelopment Authority of the City of Lancaster ending a ten-year struggle.

1978

House sold to Louise Steinman von Hess Foundation.

1978-1981

House restored.

1981

House open to public.

1982

House becomes headquarters for Historic Preservation Trust.

1997

House donated to the Trust by Louise Steinman von Hess Foundation.

Today, the Trust helps promote historic preservation as a viable alternative through preservation education, advocacy, and direct action.   Visitors are welcome to tour the house Monday through Friday from 9:00am to 5:00pm.