Henry Hirshfeld (1834-1911), a native of Germany, was a prominent Austin merchant and a leader in the city's Jewish community. In 1873 he and his wife Jennie (Melasky) built a one-story limestone cottage on the lot west of this site. Because of their financial success and a growing family, they later made plans for a larger home here.
Construction of this two-story brick and cut stone house began in 1885 and the family moved in a year after completion. Designed and built by architect John Andrewartha, it features characteristics of Victorian and Eastlake styling. Exterior ornamentation includes a double gallery, a bay, stained glass, ornate woodwork, and intricate limestone detailing. The two-story stick style carriage house was built soon after completion of the main residence.
The Hirshfelds had eight children. Two of their sons, Jake and Sam, also became merchants and opened separate clothing stores. Jake and his brother Morris served as directors of the Austin National Bank, an institution their father helped establish in 1890.
Family members continued to reside here until the death of the Hirshfelds' daughter Leila Hirshfeld Bernhem in 1973.