22 Prospect Street


This house was built in 1885 by Totten and Champ, local contractors, for Dr. and Mrs. Herbert Schmitz. Dr. Schmitz was born in France in 1846 and came to the United States in 1866. He served as principal of Ingham University in LeRoy before being elected head of the science department at the Geneseo Normal, a position he held for 28 years. In 1890, the title to the house was transferred to Dr. Schmitz’s sister, Mrs. John (Louisa) Abbott, wife of a prominent Geneseo attorney. In 1916, Mrs. Abbott sold the property to Anna and Sarah McCoy. Sarah McCoy died in 1927, but Anna retained possession until 1945 when she sold it to James and Jane Sinclair who sold it to Arthur and Doris Reed in 1947.

The house is an example of the Queen Anne vernacular (“Folk Victorian”) style. Like other Queen Anne styles, the upper floor was often shingled, while the lower was clapboard. The vernacular houses were less elaborate than other Victorian homes, but each had at least one element that made it unique. For example, this house is distinguished by a small balcony above the front porch. The similar house next door (20 Prospect Street) has a gable over the front porch.