905 Kirby, Tammy and Billy Edwards
The George Samuel Kreeger House, c. 1905 was awarded a Landmark Plaque to the current owners, Tammy and Billy Edwards, at the 2011 annual CHPS meeting held on Jan 18th, 2012
The three story, three bed room, 2.5 bath American Foursquare is believed to have been built in 1905 for St. Patrick Hospital’s first Anesthesiologist, Dr. George Samuel Kreeger. It is thought to be the last home in Lake Charles to have gas lighting, four of the original gas lights remain and were converted to electric chandeliers.
There are hardwood floors throughout the house and the windows are original.
The parlor and dining room are connected by a large wood paneled pocket door also original to the house. Interesting features to note are the Lake Charles style columns along the wide front porch with its classic pediment and the scroll brackets under the eaves. At some later date an addition was added to the rear of the house.
When the present owners, Billy and Tammy Edwards, began the full restoration from October 2010 –March 2011, the history of the house would be difficult to find. One of the previous owners had the abstract bound in leather and placed on the table in the foyer for all to see. After a spousal spat, it was thrown into the fireplace and burned. All records the new owners were able to find were located at Levingston Land and Title.
A native of New Orleans, and a graduate of Tulane Medical School, Dr. Kreeger interned at Touro Infirmary and later studied in Paris, France and Vienna, Austria before coming to Lake Charles in 1902. His practice was first in the field of general medicine and later as an anesthetist at St. Patrick’s Hospital.
He assisted in organizing the Seventh District Medical Society on February 12, 1917, and was made secretary, serving in that capacity until 1925, when he was made president of the organization.
In 1924, Dr. Kreeger assisted Sister Mary Beatrice in organizing the staff of St. Patrick’s and in meeting the requirements of the American College of Surgeons. In recognition of his work, Sister Beatrice appointed him first chief of staff. The following year he was elected to that position by the staff and had the distinction of being the only chief of staff to have served two terms.
In 1950 he was honored by the hospital staff on the occasion of the anniversary of fifty years in the practice of medicine in Lake Charles, and was a special guest at a dinner in his honor at the Pioneer Club.
The widely known anesthetist was also health officer from 1910 to 1915 and was the author of the first ordinance providing for the inspection of dairies, dairy herds, and slaughter houses and their products. He also acted as registrar of vital statistics prior to 1918 when the U. S. Bureau of Vital Statistics placed Lake Charles in a registration area, and was the first official registrar, continuing in that position until 1928, when the duties were designated to the Board of Health. Dr. Kreeger retired in 1946 and died September 7, 1952 at the age of 81 of cancer.
Thank you Billy and Tammy Edwards for restoring this fine historic home to its former glory and sharing the history of this remarkable man with us.