A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from December 29, 2012
“Men build houses; women build homes”

Newspaper writer and poet Nixon Waterman (1859-1944) wrote “House and Home” in 1897, containing the following verses:

“The men of earth build houses, halls and chambers, roofs and domes --
But the women of earth—God knows—the women build the homes.”


“Men build houses; women build homes” was cited in print in 1902 and is probably a shortened version of this Nixon Waterman verse.


Wikipedia: Nixon Waterman
Nixon Waterman (12 November 1859, Newark, Kendall County, Illinois - 1 September 1944, Canton, Norfolk County, Massachusetts) was a newspaper writer, poet and Chautauqua lecturer, who rose to prominence in the 1890s.

Google Books
23 April 1897, The L. A. W. Bulletin and Good Roads, pg. 443, col. 2:
HOUSE AND HOME.
A house is built of bricks and stones, of sills and posts and piers;
But a home is built of loving deeds that stand a thousand years.
A house, though but an humble cot, within its walls may hold
A home of priceless beauty, rich in Love’s eternal gold.

The men of earth build houses, halls and chambers, roofs and domes --
But the women of earth—God knows—the women build the homes.
Eve could not stray from Paradise, for, O. no matter where
Her gracious presence lit the way, lo! Paradise was there.

Google Books
A Book of Verses
By Nixon Waterman
Boston, MA: Forbes & Company
1900
Pg. 113:
HOUSE AND HOME
A HOUSE is built of bricks and stones, of sills and posts and piers;
But a home is built of loving deeds that stand a thousand years.
A house, though but an humble cot, within its walls may hold
A home of priceless beauty, rich in Love’s eternal gold.

The men of earth build houses, halls and chambers, roofs and domes --
But the women of earth—God knows—the women build the homes.
Eve could not stray from Paradise, for, O. no matter where
Her gracious presence lit the way, lo! Paradise was there.

Chronicling America
24 July 1901, New-York (NY) Daily Tribune, pg. 5, col. 4:
HOUSE AND HOME.
A house is built of bricks and stones, of sills and posts and piers;
But a home is built of loving deeds that stand a thousand years.
A house, though but an humble cot, within its walls may hold
A home of priceless beauty, rich in Love’s eternal gold.

The men of earth build houses, halls and chambers, roofs and domes --
But the women of earth—God knows—the women build the homes.
Eve could not stray from Paradise, for, O. no matter where
Her gracious presence lit the way, lo! Paradise was there.
-- Nixon Waterman.

5 June 1902, Hamilton (OH) Evening Democrat, “New Woman Sayings,” pg. 3, col. 1:
Men build houses; women build homes.

6 February 1906, Washington (DC) Post, pg. 6, col. 4:
The Home Builders.
Nixon Waterman.
The men of earth build houses, halls and chambers, roofs and domes --
But the women of earth—God knows—the women build the homes.

9 May 1921, Greensboro (NC) Daily News, “West Market Pastor Delivers Masterpiece: Rev. Mr. Barnhardt Combines Commencement Sermon and Mothers’ Day Service,” pg. 7, col. 5:
“The home is the broadest empire that is ruled by any human scepter; and woman is supreme there—most of the men could testify to that,” the speaker continued. “Men build houses, but women build homes.”
(Rev. J. H. Barnhardt—ed.)

Google Books
A Dictionary of American Proverbs
Edited by Wolfgang Mieder, Stewart A. Kingsbury and Kelsie B. Harder
New York, NY: Oxford University Press
1991
Pg. 525:
Men build houses; women build homes. Rec. dist.: Ont. 1st cit.: US1938 Champion, Racial Proverbs. 20c. coll.: Stevenson 1520:3. 

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityBuildings/Housing/Parks • Saturday, December 29, 2012 • Permalink