Archive for June 3, 2014

1904 Parry Mansion Open for Tours, June 28

Parry Mansion

Parry Mansion.
Photo provided by the event organizers and used with written permission.

By Jen Schmits Thomas
On behalf of Indiana Landmarks

On June 28, 2014, the mansion that gave rise to the Golden Hill Historic District will open for a tour following a top-to-bottom restoration before the property goes on the market with a multi-million-dollar price tag.

Auto visionary David M. Parry built the house in 1904, one of the oldest structures in Golden Hill. Indiana Automotive Heritage, an affinity group of Indiana Landmarks, will stage the June 28 event at the 21,000-square-foot mansion restored by John and Eric Lethen of JERICO Properties.

David Parry made his fortune manufacturing carriages, owning one of the world’s largest carriage factories in the 1890s before he branched into automobiles. Beginning in 1907, he owned or was a partner or investor in companies that produced the Parry, the Overland, and the Pathfinder.

Parry called his estate Golden Hill. In 1916, his family divided the vast property into building lots and used the same name for the residential development. The Parry Mansion, 3650 Spring Hollow Road, was purchased in 1927 by William A. Atkins, an industrialist and owner of the Severin Hotel, whose family owned the property until the 1960s. Atkins altered and enlarged the house to its present size.

The vacant and neglected mansion’s fate was a concern to neighbors and Indiana Landmarks until John Lethen of Jerico Properties bought the 4.5-acre property in 2012. “John Lethen is an experienced restorer of historic homes, and we’re glad he rescued the Parry Mansion,” says Marsh Davis, president of Indiana Landmarks. “He saved and repaired the original features, and at the same time he updated the kitchen, bathrooms and systems to meet the needs of modern living. For example, any cook would love to have a kitchen like one in the Parry Mansion.”

The Golden Hill Historic District, listed in the National Register of Historic Places, is located just south of Woodstock Club and the Indianapolis Museum of Art, just west of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Street. The elevated Parry Mansion site overlooks the Central Canal and White River.

Indiana Automotive Heritage hosts the exclusive tour on June 28. The self-guided tour includes all three stories of the 21,000-square-foot structure, which is filled with carved wood, marble, and stone fireplaces, beautiful woodwork, window seats, balconies, three rooftop terraces, and rooms with views through leaded-glass windows. Light refreshments will be served.

The event benefits the Indiana Automotive Heritage affinity group. Tickets to the event, held from 3 to 6 p.m., are $40 per person, with discounts for members of Indiana Automotive Heritage and Indiana Landmarks. Tickets must be purchased in advance online at or by calling Indiana Landmarks, 317-639-4534.

Parry Mansion Tour

3 p.m. to 6 p.m., June 28

3650 Spring Hollow Road, Indianapolis

Advance sale only: $40 per person; $25 per Indiana Automotive Heritage member; $30 per Indiana Landmarks member

Advance ticket purchase required at or by calling Indiana Landmarks, 317-639-4534


Indiana Landmarks revitalizes communities, reconnects us to our heritage, and saves meaningful places. With 8 offices located throughout the state, the non-profit organization helps people rescue endangered landmarks and restore historic neighborhoods and downtowns. People who join Indiana Landmarks receive its bimonthly magazine, Indiana Preservationist. For more information, call 317-639-4534, 800-450-4534, or visit

Editor’s Acknowledgement: JTPR, Inc.