The Brennan House was built in 1868 for a wholesale tobacco merchant, Francis S.J. Ronald. It is of a type of residence introduced to Louisville before the Civil War by Henry Whitestone, a prominent Louisville architect. However, there is no evidence to prove the house was designed by him.
In general, residents of Louisville have avoided connected row houses like those in Washington, D.C. Instead, the housing market was comprised of closely spaced townhouses, sometimes with stone fronts on brick construction. The Brennan House is an excellent example of this trend. The Brennan House was among the first in Louisville to have electric lights, and the house contains intricate crystal and etched-glass chandeliers as well as a signed Tiffany lamp.