The W. D. Kincaid/James Lewis Wade Home
403 North Eighth Street
This red brick home with arched brick window and door headers, shingled gabled ends, and railed porch is an example of a simplified Queen Anne cottage, an architectural style popular in the early 20th century. It was built in 1887-1888 for the W. D. Kincaid family on land that was originally owned by the Murphys, founders of Murphyville (Alpine). The interior has been retained except for a remodeled kitchen. Original stained pine woodwork and wainscoting, high ceilings, and hardwood floors throughout the house, as well as five fireplaces with original mantles, create the feeling of traveling back in time. Antique furnishings add to the charm of this more than a century-old house.
Kincaid and his partner owned and operated Kincaid and Altgelt, a general mercantile store which specialized in building materials. In 1904 Kincaid sold the business, and a year later he sold his home to the James Lewis Wade family.
Wade, a native of Kentucky, had moved to Alpine from the Ozona area where he was a sheep rancher for several years. He then purchased a ranch in the Glass Mountains where he raised cattle and horses, many of which he sold to the U.S. Cavalry. He also owned irrigated farms along the Rio Grande.
His wife, Mary Elizabeth, was the daughter of an early Texas pioneer, Capt. Sam Barnes, a famed frontiersman and Indian fighter. She became quite successful, establishing the first fully equipped, mechanically operated steam laundry in the area. She brought in men specifically trained in the new cleaning techniques to operate the business until local people could be taught to run the laundry. She received a special merit award from the U.S. government for her invaluable service to Ft. D. A. Russell and its hospital facilities during the 1917 flu epidemic.
The Wades were parents of eight children, and all were active in civic, educational, and religious activities throughout the early years of Alpine. They especially promoted the religious growth in the entire community. The spacious Wade home became the center for church services of various denominations until new churches were built. The Alpine Church of Christ was organized in this home and conducted all of its services here for several years.
The last of the original Wade family, Miss Electa Wade, lived in this home until the 1980’s when she was confined to a nursing facility. She died December 29, 1993, in Alpine.
Present owners are Mr. and Mrs. James Jones who bought the property in 2007. They have enhanced and revitalized the beauty of this historic home.