9. Propinquity 1809

"Propinquity was built in 1809 by the founder of Bayou Sara, content with establishing his trading post on low land near the river commerce but seeking higher ground for his residence. He purchased 4 1/2 building lots for 900 pesos and built a sturdy brick home, the building inventory consisting of nearly 200,000 bricks, 8 bushels of hair for plaster, and a fanlight window for the attic. 

By 1822 Propinquity was owned by Dietrich Holl, German immigrant who operated a store there and took as his much younger wife a ward of Jane Percy of Beech Woods Plantation, where Audubon’s wife Lucy tutored neighborhood girls and Audubon himself visited frequently. Holl brought his nephew Maximillian Nubling from Germany, and upon the uncle’s death shortly after marriage, young Nubling took over the business and married the widow, Virginia Chisholm. Lucy purchased art supplies for her pupils and sewing supplies for herself at the store, and Audubon found Nubling 'well-educated and sensible of the arts.' Returning in 1824 from a trip in search of a publisher for his bird studies, Audubon found yellow fever rampant and borrowed Nubling’s horse for an anxious ride to Beech Woods, fearful for Lucy’s wellbeing; fortunately he found his beloved wife in good health." Anne Butler