These houses in the Old North Dayton neighborhood were part of the Kossuth Colony. I learned about them in a great book by Andrew Walsh called “Lost Dayton Ohio.”
In 1905, the Barney and Smith Car Company needed to add laborers. They recruited immigrants from Hungary and then built 40 double houses for them to rent. They also built the Clubhouse, where the workers were required to shop for all of their food and clothing. The Clubhouse was also the post office and incoming packages were inspected to make sure they didn’t contain items that could have been bought at the Clubhouse.
The Kossuth Colony was surrounded by a 12 foot fence. This was so unusual that it attracted visitors. People took the streetcar to “see for themselves the strange fenced-in settlement of North Dayton.”
The colony was short-lived because of the 1913 flood. Sections of the fence were lost and the Barney and Smith Car Company needed to close for a period. Many of the Hungarian immigrants found work elsewhere.
If you want to take a look at this nationally recognized historic district, the Kossuth Colony was in the area bounded by Baltimore, Mack Avenue and Notre Dame Avenue. A long time resident told me that the area looks a lot better today than it did ten years ago. He said a more recent immigrant group, Turkish refugees from Russia, is moving in and fixing up many of the double houses.