Duplex Home of August J. Leap, Jr. & Nancy Mae Leap and Jack Kendall Harris & Anna Mae Harris

This ranch-style duplex was also built in 1955 by Gulf Coast Securities, Inc., as were adjacent homes at 1531 Evans Avenue and 2616 Michigan.  All three homes feature the large jalousie windows so popular in the 1950’s.  This home also includes two carport areas.

The home’s first occupants were August J. Leap, Jr. and Nancy Mae Leap, who lived in one-half of the duplex, and their daughter, Anna Mae Harris, and her husband, Jack Kendall Harris, who lived in the other half.

When John Dean recorded his Dean’s Subdivision map on May 1, 1920, this lot was part of a larger 210-by-210-foot parcel shown on the map as “Tippins,” signifying that it had already been conveyed to Fannie Yeats Tippins in 1914.  By the 1950’s, the “Tippins” parcel had become four separate lots:  1531-33 Evans Avenue, 1541-43 Evans Avenue, 2615 Michigan Avenue and 2627 Michigan Avenue, and Gulf Coast Securities owned three of them.  On August 1, 1956, the company sold the corner parcel (1543 Evans Avenue) to the Leaps for $9,000 and the northerly parcel (1541 Evans Avenue) to the Harrises, also for $9,000.

Mr. Leap was the oldest of nine children born to a Kentucky farmer, August J. Leap, Sr.  He and his wife, Nancy, lived in Kentucky for most of their lives and came to Fort Myers in 1956 when they purchased this house.  Mr. Leap, then age 49, worked a manager of the Super Test Service Station.  Just three years later, the two couples sold this home and the Leaps returned to Newport, Kentucky, where Mr. Leap worked as a bartender in Harry’s Café.

The Harris family remained in Fort Myers, with Mr. Harris working as an installer for a telephone company, according to the 1957 Fort Myers city directory, and eventually retiring from Sprint.  In 1970, the Leaps returned to Fort Myers from Kentucky, rejoining their daughter, Anna Mae and her family, as well as their youngest son, James, who had also settled here.   On Nov. 15, 1989, the News-Pressreported that they were celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary.

Portion of “Tippins” parcel abutting Block G on Dean’s Subdivision map.