435 16th Ave NE 33704

Then and Now — 1932 & 2022435 16th Ave NE

From 1932: “The very latest type of brick veneer construction with gabled asbestos slate, Eternite roof; attractive entrance with wrought iron hand rails, large living room, dining room, kitchen, 2 bedrooms, and 2 tiled baths down; all oak floors; tile sun porch and large service porch, many unique built-in features. Upstairs roughed in for 3 bedrooms and bath. Located in North Shore on 60ft lot facing south. Sold by Mann the Real Estate Mann.”

This house was built in 1932 and purchased by Mrs. Elizabeth Haven Chapell Armstrong who lived in the house until her passing on February 20, 1949. Elizabeth was born in New London Connecticut on April 5, 1870. At age 27, on September 15, 1897, Elizabeth married Mr. Benjamin Latham Lloyd Armstrong, also of New London who was a promising young businessman. Benjamin owned a silk manufacturing company and would also serve as Mayor of New London in 1906. The wedding announcement described Elizabeth as “one of the wealthiest and most accomplished young women in the city”. Elizabeth and Benjamin had three children, Elizabeth (1900), Angela (1903) and Benjamin Jr (1905).

In 1918 the Armstrongs began wintering in St. Pete and becoming active in the local social scene. By 1935, after 38 years of marriage, Benjamin filed for divorce, they were both 65 years old. The couple went to Reno Nevada where a judge granted the divorce based on Benjamin’s claim of ‘cruelty’. The couple came back to St. Petersburg and set up separate homes, Elizabeth moving into this featured house. On March 22, 1942, Benjamin died, he was 72. In his will he divided his large estate between the children, but also left $10,000 to Elizabeth. Benjamin was buried in Cedar Grove Cemetery in New London, CT.

Elizabeth lived on another 7 years until her death on February 20, 1949, at the age of 79. Elizabeth was buried at Cedar Grove Cemetery next to her ex-husband. The house was then sold to settle the estate.

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