Some Nice Things Our Guests Say About Us!
Ellen and Kirby
Thanks so much for out wonderful
stay here at the Coppersmith
Inn! Our daughter Jennifer and
her fiancÚ Donnie chose your inn
for their wedding! You couldn’t
have done anything to make it
more delightful. You both went
out of your way to make
everything perfect for all of us
– from saving the day with ice
cream from the store, to
accommodating our dietary
restrictions, to taking the time
to “play” the organ with our
grandson Dylan. You are both so
friendly and gracious and have
great personalities! We will
certainly recommend the
Coppersmith to anyone heading to
Ola and Roger
Kirby and Ellen
This was our first experience at
a Bed and Breakfast and we had a
wonderful tome! The room was
gorgeous, the breakfast was
unbelievable, and the bed was
comfy. We especially enjoyed the
veranda and late night snacks!
Good luck with the Inn. You
certainly have set the standard
by which we will judge our
future Bed and Breakfast stays.
David and Ashlie
Lake Charles, LA
Ellen and Kirby
Your house is truly a showplace.
By far the best breakfast on the
island. The balcony is a
wonderful place to get away.
Your hospitality is next to none
we have ever experienced. Thank
you for making our vacation a
relaxing time. We will be back.
A promise not a threat.
P.S. Jeanette says Raspberry
French toast “YUM”.
Mike and Jeanette
The Coppersmith has been an Inn Since May 1994
the property on which the home stands was near Galveston’s finest
Victorian residential areas, the neighborhood was not developed until
relatively late in the 19th century. The land was listed as "low
ground" and "poor" in the 1880 Tax Assessor’s Abstract because the
property fronted on a finger of Hitchcock Bayou. Property values did
not increase until 1885 when the bayou was filled and the neighborhood
the first people to construct homes in the neighborhood were Howard and
Minnie Carnes. The Carnes’s purchased the land for their new house in
April 1886. The home was completed in 1887 for $5000.
quality of the Carnes Home reflects both Carnes’ position as the
cashier, and the prominence of the Morgan Line. The company began
operating steam packets between Galveston, New Orleans and New York in
1858. By the end of the 1860s, the Morgan fleet included 15 side-wheel
steamers. In 1901, 1,000 workers were employed at the Morgan terminal
on Pier 21, now the site of the Texas Seaport Museum.
Carnes’s remained in the house until 1894, when the Morgan Line
apparently transferred Mr. Carnes to Mexico. The property was sold to
Paul and Bridget Shean, an immigrant Irish coppersmith and his wife,
who came to Galveston from New Orleans in 1872.
1874 Shean’s coppersmith business developed into a mill supply house
and later became a plumbing supply company, known as The Paul Shean
Sanitary Plumbing & Mfg Co. They were located at 2021-2023 the
Strand, and when telephones came in they had Telephone No. 20. The
company still exists more than 125 years later as the BLP Mobile Paint
Decorating Center, located on 45th Street.
home survived the Great Storm of 1900 with minor damage. In fact the
whole block had little damage except for the blue house on the
southwest corner of 19th and Avenue M. It floated intact down the
street, and stopped in front of this house. It was returned to its
Shean died in 1915, leaving his property to his wife and two daughters.
The family appointed William Eicher, who was married to the Sheans’
daughter Joan, as agent and manager of the business. Bridget Shean
lived with her daughter and son-in-law in the house until her death in
William Eicher continued to live in the home until Joan’s death in
1962. When William died three years later, he left all benefits from
the estate to Kirwin High School and Ursuline Academy in Galveston and
Xavier University in Cincinnati. The house was sold in the estate
settlement in December 1965. The property changed hands several times
before being acquired by the current owners in 2007.
THE ARCHITECT OF THE HOWARD CARNES HOME aka THE COPPERSMITH INN
Muller was born in Krefeld, Germany in 1849, educated in German schools
and graduated with a degree in architecture from the Royal Academy of
Fine Arts in Berlin. Upon his arrival in this country he located in
Washington D.C. where he was associated with E.H. Dedden & Company
architects. In 1886 he was attracted to Galveston, Texas which at that
time, was a thriving city and the cultural center of Texas. Within a
year of his arrival, Muller won the competition to design the Galveston
City Hall and Market House. His ability and personality enabled him to
soon become one of Galveston’s most sought after architects. He died in
1896 of typhoid fever during an epidemic
and tide have taken toll of most of Muller’s buildings. He might have
been completely forgotten had it not been for his two daughters.
Among his buildings still existing are:
Howard Carnes house built in 1887, now known as the "Coppersmith Inn."
Although the Carnes Home incorporates classic Queen Anne design
features, including an asymmetrical facade with turret, prominent
porches, fish scale shingles and irregular roofline, the house is
distinguished by the architect’s use of ornamental details. Muller’s
signature arch motif is evident throughout the exterior and interior
design. Rounded Arches are used on the double galleries and windows, as
well as in the entrance hall and second floor hallways. The elaborate
staircase, probably the homes most outstanding feature is another
Muller trademark. The curved staircase is made of walnut, curly pine
and cypress. It features an elaborate newel post and turned walnut
balusters with beaded risers leading to a curved landing on the second
floor. The entire area is illuminated by triple arched, stained glass
windows of red, yellow, and cobalt. Original cobalt transoms carry the
color scheme through the second floor.
(2) J.C. Trube Castle built in 1890, on Sealy at 17th Street
(3) Letitia Rosenberg Home For Women’s built in 1895, on Rosenberg Ave. (25th) at Avenue O 1/2 (no longer a women’s home),.
(4) Galveston Orphan’s Home built in 1895, on 23rd Street at Avenue M (no longer an orphan’s home),
The Telephone Building. Built in 1896 and used as the Southwestern
Telegraph and Telephone Company Building. This 19,000 square foot
structure is Muller sole surviving commercial building in Galveston.
Claimed to be the "finest telephone building in the west", it was built
for the phone company when there were approximately 500 telephones in
Galveston. Galveston was the home to the first telephone exchange in
Other Buildings designed by Muller:
(6) Galveston City Hall, built in 1888.
(7) Williams Building a three story building
(8) H. Maritz house, built 1893, and many more
White Christmas At The Coppersmith Inn, Galveston Texas 2004
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