The Cox-Deasy house is an 1850 creole cottage and is the second oldest home in the Oakleigh Garden Historic District. The house was built by George Cox, a bricklayer who moved to Mobile from London, England at the age of 14. He moved to Mobile in 1828 and built a name for himself in brick laying. He was taught the trade by his half-brother, William Cox, and carried on his business following William’s death in 1832. George Cox built several buildings throughout Mobile, including Horst Hall which is now known as the Ezell House. He also built Landmark Hall and the Rapalje House.
George Cox built the home in 1850 for himself and his family. They chose to build in this location because of the plentiful clay pit next to the Oakleigh House. The Sunken Garden now sits where the clay pit once was. George built the two-bedroom home because he needed more space for himself, his wife Susan, and their 11 children. George passed away in 1869. The home was later deeded to his daughter, Catherine in 1906. She lived in the home with her husband, Jeremiah Deasy, and their two children Edmund and Ella.
The house passed to both Edmund and Ella following Catherine’s death. Neither Edmund nor Ella married or had any children. The two of them lived in the home for the remainder of their lives. During this time a suite had been built on the upper level of the home. Ella lived upstairs while Edmund lived in the rooms downstairs. Edmund Deasy would be the last resident of the home until his death in 1977. Edmund spent his life building his wealth and his personal library. He is remembered as a scholarly and eccentric man. He left his fortune to several private schools throughout Alabama, Mississippi and other Southern states. He left the home itself to the Historic Mobile Preservation Society, who still manages the property today.
The Cox-Deasy house suffered significant damages during Hurricane Frederic in 1979. Most of the damage was to the roof, which was hit by a tree and other debris, but the interior of the home was damaged due to leaks caused by the roof damage. Over it's years as a family home, many modifications had been made to the building. The roof-line had been changed to accommodate rooms in the attic and ground level porches had been enclosed.
The damage to the house gave the Historic Mobile Preservation Society the opportunity to return the house to its original condition. The HMPS began reconstruction in 1981. The roof -line was returned to its original Gulf Coast cottage configuration, and porches were reopened. The mechanicals, the HVAC system, restrooms, and kitchen, were placed in an attached component that is connected to the house by the rear porch so the original room configuration of the house could be restored.
The Cox-Deasy House is also available for rent as an event space. It is a cozy option for parties fewer than twenty guests. Rentals last three hours, and include use of the climate-controlled cottage, as well as the bathrooms and additional outside space. For more information contact us at 251-432-1281 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.