A first generation Texan, James Jalufka (1879-1969) was born in Lavaca County, the son of Moravian (Czech) immigrants. A veteran of the Spanish-American War, he also served as a soldier in World War I. He was a prominent south Texas cotton grower and owned a local cotton gin. Jalufka and his wife, Helen J. , had this home built about 1905.
Originally located at 1408 North Mesquite Street, it was part of the neighborhood known as "Old Irishtown". They continued to live in the house until 1919, after which time it was used as rental property. Pete and Minnie Lee Govatos, members of a family active in the city's Greek community since the 1920's, purchased the home from the Jalufkas in 1944. Residents of Corpus Christi since 1940, they operated a local restaurant and lived in the house until Minnie Lee's death in 1960. The house changed ownership several times after the Govatos family sold it, and eventually it fell into disrepair.
Acquired by the city in 1987, it was moved to Heritage Park and renovated on its new site. (1990)