Designed by Lyle Zisler in 1940, this home was built for a famed member of Detroit’s past. John Roxborough, manager to Joe Louis, lived in this North End home. Roxborough ran a real estate office in Paradise Valley (a front for his illegal gaming and numbers operation). He managed Louis from the early 30s to 1949, even though he served a 2 1⁄2 year prison sentence in the mid 40s for leading the numbers operation. Roxborough helped shape the image of Joe Louis throughout his career, and they remained close through their lifetime.
The Roxboroughs were a prominent family in Detroit in the 30s and 40s. John’s brother Charles was the first black Michigan state senator and also lived in the North End. A brief history of this family can be found here.
The house itself is 3,530 square feet, with six bedrooms, three bathrooms, and a three car garage. We can’t help but notice the massive price jump on the house, which sold in March of 2015 for $2,000 and is now listing for $90,000. Maybe notoriety is a selling point? Has anyone been inside? We’d love to hear and/or see what it’s like!
- Roxborough, John W. (1892-1975) [BlackPast.org]
- The Roxboroughs: One Of Detroit's Leading Families [TellUsDetroit.com]
- Boxing legend Joe Louis’s former home in Boston Edison lists for $280K [Curbed Detroit]
- 235 Holbrook [Redfin]