In 1842, at the age of ten, William Kehoe immigrated to America from County Wexford, Ireland, with his mother, father, four brothers, and three sisters in tow. The family settled in the Old Fort District of Savannah with other Irish immigrants. William apprenticed in an iron foundry and worked his way up to foreman. Eventually, he bought the foundry, which was at that time, located east of Broughton Street. After World War I, he built a new foundry on the riverfront and quickly became one of Savannah's most successful and prominent businessmen.
Labor of Love: Construction of The Kehoe House
In 1868, William Kehoe married Anne Flood and the two quickly started a family. Their first address, located on Columbia Square, was 130 Habersham Street. As his business and family grew, Kehoe built a larger, more stately home. He liked the Historic District so much that he purchased the southern half of the lot, located diagonally across the street, for $950. The Kehoe House was designed by DeWitt Bruyn, and was built at the cost of $25,000. The home was completed in May of 1892, whereupon Mr. and Mrs. Kehoe and their ten children moved into their new home.
The Legacy Lives On
Mr. Kehoe's heirs sold the house in 1930. In the thirty years following the sale, the property was used as a boarding house, funeral parlor, and held for a time by Alabama and New York Jets football star, Joe Namath. In 1990, Mr. Namath sold the property, and after a two-year renovation, the property opened as a Historic Bed and Breakfast Inn aptly named The William Kehoe House. The property was sold again in 2003, and purchased by its current owner, HLC Hotels, in May of 2007.