c. 1900 Queen Anne – Mt. Pleasant, IA (George F. Barber)

SOLD / Archived From 2014
Added to OHD on 7/15/14 - Last OHD Update: 2/14/18 - 41 Comments
Address Withheld

Map: Street View

  • $49,900
  • 3586 Sq Ft
  • 0.28 Ac.
This Barber home is being sold as-is. Newer roof on house and garage. Great opportunity for the right person to bring this once lovely home back to its original splendor.
Sold By
Steve Gray, Cottage Realty      319-385-3243
Links & Additional Info
State: | Region: | Period: ,
Associated Styles: | Architect: | Misc:

41 Comments on c. 1900 Queen Anne – Mt. Pleasant, IA (George F. Barber)

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  1. Avatarbotto1968@att.net says: 2584 comments
    OHD Supporter

    Escondido, CA

    Oh this home has a a lot of potential! I wish the photos were less blurry.

  2. John ShifletJohn Shiflet says: 4645 comments

    This was one of Geo. Barber’s more popular house designs during the 1890’s and first years of the 1900’s. I think the c. 1900 date is likely accurate as well. The exterior appearance is very close to planbook illustrations but the interior seems to have had some of its late Victorian character toned down in more recent decades. The wall-to-wall carpets diminish the Victorian look as does the rather plain millwork and window curtains inside. I’d expect originally the house would have had some interior fretwork at least around the entry or staircase. Location-wise, the house also seems to have lost some continuity with its residential surroundings. If one could find an early photograph, it would not surprise me to find there were a number of other Victorian era houses nearby since razed. Mount Pleasant’s population in 1900 was around 20,000 so it was a fairly large community back then. If someone bought the house to restore I believe it would be worth their effort to try to make the house appears as it would have in Barber’s publications with matching porch columns and other millwork. Priced to sell and said to have a newer roof although the one on the porch might need attention if it has not been replaced since the streetview images were taken.

  3. Paul WPaul W says: 563 comments

    Isn’t it amazing how many Barber houses are popping up for sale? You are right John about this needing bit more detail. Again the white does nothing to enhance the exterior details, but a good house ,Not sure about the market there but maybe tad overpriced for condition.

  4. AvatarDonnie Dawne Don says: 2 comments

    What a diamond in the rough <3!

  5. Chris DiMatteiChris DiMattei says: 261 comments

    Finally !!! I say this, because I know that the preservation community within Mt. Pleasant has been asking, if not begging, the current homeowner to sell the house, so that someone could restore her. This home is one of at least six George Barber designs built in Mt. Pleasant, all of which are interesting and different Victorian designs, many of which are in good shape and well maintained. At one point, the preservation community here was considering marketing Mt. Pleasant as a tourist destination, to see the beautiful collection of George Barber designs there. I am pretty confident that the buyer of this home will get plenty of restoration help from the locals. Looking forward to seeing this happen.

    • AvatarCindy Benedict says: 1 comments


      We are seriously looking at making an offer on this property so that she is not lost! We have contractors doing estimates as we speak! Any photos that anyone has that could assist us with the restoration would be appreciated as it is our intension to restore her back to original state. Quite an undertaking as it was made into apartments at one point. Oh, and we would take all the restoration help that would be offered.

      • Chris DiMatteiChris DiMattei says: 261 comments

        Cindy, I am all to happy to help you in any way I can. There is so much that can and will share with you regarding the original design of this home. I have documentation and photos related to 44 other examples of this very same design, built throughout the US. I have corresponded with most of the homeowners of these other examples, so I can get additional measurements and photos when necessary. I have digitally restored a set of original blueprints of this design for an Ohio homeowner of this same design. I have over 25,000 photos of George Barber’s architecture, so even if a particular detail is not associated with your specific design, chances are I have some photos of how Barber detailed it for another house of his.

        I could not be happier at the prospect of this home being restored. I hope everything works out for you during the purchase. In fact, I would stipulate that the current homeowner not discard any loose or dismantled architectural elements, and I would ask that she/he provide you with any documentation related to the house, that they may have or know of. I say this because I believe the current homeowner lives out of state, and she/he may have some info, artifacts, photos, etc, in her possession, wherever they live now. It is worth asking, anyway.

        Please feel free to email me directly at this email address, and keep me posted on your progress. best of luck to you.


  6. AvatarPaula Ann says: 4 comments

    This house has a lot of potential. It is mere blocks away from the Iowa Wesleyan College campus. The neighborhood is a good one. Although the inside has been chopped into 6 apartments, each with it’s own tiny kitchen and bath, it would be easy to convert it back into a single-family dwelling. The foundation appears solid, and the basement is dry. This house has a good “feel” inside and out.

  7. Kelly, Old House DreamsKelly, Old House Dreams says: 10079 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Thanks to Dave Mummery, he sent in a few more photos of the place.

  8. John ShifletJohn Shiflet says: 4645 comments

    My thanks to Dave. They only prove there’s plenty of work ahead for the next owner(s). But the house does have potential overall and hopefully will be properly restored.

  9. Kelly, Old House DreamsKelly, Old House Dreams says: 10079 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Reduced to $49,900.

  10. AvatarDave M says: 21 comments

    VERY motativated seller, the city is riding her hard. There are $50,000+ in leins by the city because of code volations. I talked with the city admin and they are willing to work with the new owner.
    Its currently subdivided into 6 apartments and who ever did the divisions was uncommonly kind to the house.
    I’m working on a rehab budget to get into the house, its coming up around $125,000 to buy and get into occupy condition, with another $50-75,000 to finish.
    It needs all new mechinaicals; c1962 steam boiler, 2 newer hot water heaters, a newer 200A breaker panel but the house is still primary knob & wire.
    Its in a very high visiblity lot, you can see the house when you turn off of B34 into the town square.
    I’ll keep the group informed if I do buy her.
    oh, she is rock solid!! The realtor and I spent 1 1/2 hours walking around the inside and not one floor board creak.

  11. Kelly, Old House DreamsKelly, Old House Dreams says: 10079 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    I took a peek on the Rehab Addict’s Facebook page and someone posted a link to the listing (not this page, just the listing) and said that the city wants to tear this one down. I found an ordinance meeting from Aug. 7 that only said this, “House is now listed for sale. The Committee directed Pat to continue the legal process.” Does anyone know what is going on with the place? Is the city looking to find a way to tear it down?

  12. AvatarDave Mummery says: 21 comments

    About 2 weeks after looking at it, I talked to the city administrator, the city wants the house saved and is willing to work with the new owner.

  13. AvatarElaine says: 140 comments

    Dave, that is a GORGEOUS picture you took of the tree through the window. LOVE IT!

  14. AvatarDave Mummery says: 21 comments

    Thanks Elaine, I think, LOL
    That window is on the stair landingbetween the first and second floors.
    The house is solid, my reluctance to take this project on is solely because of the fact I can’t live in it during the first stagn rehabilitation.

    • John ShifletJohn Shiflet says: 4645 comments

      During our Midwest trip of a week ago, we saw a wonderful Italianate house in Hillsboro, OH. (the floor joists and dimensional framing are solid OAK, not pine-a first in my old house experience) But the house is being used for storage and would probably require a few months to make it campable. One idea we came up with would be to find, rent, or lease an RV, park it behind the house, and use the temporary service construction utility pole to hook up the RV and route the sewer drain temporarily into the home’s sewer line. Unless the town is a Stalinist bureaucratic fifedom, I think they would allow a temporary arrangement of that kind so long as the timeframe was clearly spelled out and the site was subject to City inspections for compliance. Most communities will not allow mobile homes of any size to be parked next to a house under restoration. Of course, you’ve only got about 60 days before this winter’s weather will set in. Some forecasters are predicting another “Polar Vortex” winter so you may want to factor in that possibility into your planning. The formerly grand historic house needs a caring new owner so hope you become it’s next steward, Dave. Good luck!

  15. AvatarKaren says: 17 comments

    I love this house and if it were closer to me I would surely buy it. I hope that someone does and restores it. The interior doesn’t look too bad. The exterior paint is almost gone and that needs to be all redone. I would have so much fun making a beautiful painted lady out of it. A few years ago, I restored an old fence and deck that was in terrible condition. Everyone said that I should tear it down but I’ve been restoring old wood ever since I was a kid. I only had to replace a few boards, lightly bleached out the wood so it would take a stain, and restained it. It looks wonderful now and I had my neighbors scratching their heads at how I brought that old stuff back. The stain that I used on the fence has a pigment in it and has never needed to be redone and it doesn’t peel. If I were to do this house that is what I would use, a pigmented stain. It would sure cut down on future maintainance. And I love the balconies!!

  16. RossRoss says: 2384 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
    Emporia, KS

    I am confused.

    A George F. Barber.

    In not bad shape.

    For $50K?

    Why is this still on the market????????????

    • AvatarKaren says: 17 comments

      There are bargains available still in some of the areas of the Midwest where I live. There are many smaller towns too far away for people to commute to work and very little work in some of these towns to be had. So, you will see some bargains come up from time to time. This one looks like it needs a lot of repair. I’ve seen even sweeter deals and almost bought one once for 33K with an in ground swimming pool, huge yard with old wrought iron fence around most of it, old carriage house the size of a 4 car garage and 4 or 5 old wonderful fireplaces inside the home. A real beauty with very little work to be done on it relatively and in much better shape than this one. But it was very far from any city to work in, too long of a drive every day to commute back and forth and too far from my family. I was afraid that I would be in love with the house, but very lonely there without my family wanting to ever come visit me that far away. So, yes, it is true, that there are still bargains to be had, but they may come with other price tags that many people are not willing to pay.

  17. John ShifletJohn Shiflet says: 4645 comments

    I believe the answer here is the same as for the c. 1900 time capsule house in Osawatomie, Kansas. This is a small town, the house is on the edge of an area beginning to lose its residential context, and most importantly, it will need a fair amount of work to bring it back. Iowa has had some wonderful houses featured on the pages of Old House Dreams. While a few have been higher priced, some of the most outstanding old house bargains have been found in the Hawkeye State. No argument at this price its a bargain but the demand for restorable old houses in Mt. Pleasant may be limited. Even rarer are people willing to pull up stakes and move from another state to claim their old house dream, but this one, because of its Barber design provenance, might be one of them. Restored and repainted in period colors Barber designed houses are almost always impressive and picturesque. I think Barber himself once said he was in the business of designing (distinctive)facades.

  18. AvatarDave Mummery says: 21 comments

    This 1 of 6 Barber houses in Mt. Pleasant, why the concentration, you got me. In my humble opinion, beleive the house is over priced with the amount of work needed. The seller is most likely not to come down off the $50m price, she has $30m into the new roof alone. Its in need of all new mechinicals to start with. There is also expense of deapartmenting her and this is all before you start to put her back together. I came up with a budget of $200m with myself doing a lot of the work.

    • RossRoss says: 2384 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
      Emporia, KS

      Hi Dave,

      I am a little confused. If the house has a new $30K roof, surely everything under the roof is worth, at the very least, $20K?

  19. AvatarDave Mummery says: 21 comments

    Hey Ross,
    Thats questionable, I’m looking at numbers and capping the total at $225m the resale value, not that I’d flip it but these old gals can mimic sailboats real fast.

    • RossRoss says: 2384 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
      Emporia, KS

      Hi again Dave,

      I think we are simply looking at the house differently.

      From my perspective the house has value. A new $30K roof has real value. Everything under the roof certainly has value, but there is no way to ever define X true value, as it is all subjective. To me, the whole house (minus the new roofing material) would certainly have a value of $20K, at least. And there is the land value, too.

      From your perspective, if I may, you seem focused on your estimate to fully restore the house: $200K. You also estimate a resale value of $225K. Therefore, from these two estimates, you determine that the purchase price is too high, as you would lose $25K.

      But, why not decide that the resale price will be, I dunno, $200K? Would that mean that the current ask should be $0?

      Or, what if the resale estimate is $300K? Does that mean you would offer MORE then the ask?

      I am uncertain how to phrase my discomfort with all this. Simply put, and not really the right words, I ask: should any owner be obliged to help fund the dreams of the next owner?

      Rather than the ask price being too high, perhaps the problem is putting $2OOK into this house, in this small town, and expecting a return. Is it wise to put $200K into a house surrounded by houses worth, at best, half that, and hope for a $225K resale price?

      I think if a person falls in love with this house, and has the time and money to devote to a slavish restoration, and could care less about a return, hey, I am all for that!!!! Whoee!!!!! But I would urge caution to anybody thinking this house is a potential money-maker, or even has the potential to break even on. And, to TRY and make money but only at the expense of the current owner seems, well, not right.

      It also should be noted that there is no law requiring anybody buying an old house to do an ideal, first-class restoration. This $50K house could certainly be made highly livable and attractive for, say, $50K (this presumes the owner doing a lot of the work).

      I am open to the idea that I have misunderstood your perspective.

      I also mean no disrespect to you, but rather am viewing the issue in academic terms.

  20. Paul WPaul W says: 563 comments

    Dave you are right about the house needing lot of work and while you may not want to sell you never know when circumstances change and you might “need” to sell. While I like Barbers designs the “real world” is that the fact its a Barber design wont add one penny to an appraisal for the next buyer. It may be more desirable to certain demographics who may choose it over another house, but it doesn’t add appraisal value. You could sit for long time at 225K before it sells. Good that you are at least being realistic and practical, I deal with the unrealistic and the impractical people all day long.

  21. AvatarDave Mummery says: 21 comments

    Hey Ross,
    I agree with most of what your saying!
    I also agree if you fall in love with the house and have the means available, go for it.
    The house has tremendous potential, its solid, it has charactor and could be the jewel of Mt Pleasant.
    On top of having the vision to see these things, I’ve done several and have been taught not to fall in love with a project and to always have a resale number in your head.
    Not knowing what vacant property values are there and if pushed to guess, I’d have to say the property is worth something like $7500, putting the structures value at $20-22,500. After that I see another $100,000 before the city will issue an occupancy permit. Then I see another $100,000 or more to finish her.
    Having spent the better part of my adult life in the financial sector and also doing several full rehabs, I need to asign values to hard objects.
    I would never presude someone not to take this project on but would want to make sure they know exactly what they’re getting into.
    I’d never view your opinions as disrespective but a good conversation and a great example of what creates a market place.
    Does it get any better then that?

  22. AvatarGina says: 1 comments

    I can’t wait to see what someone does with this house. I have watched it sit empty since I moved to Mt.P. in 1993. The owner would not sell at that time but we found another old house to love. She is a beauty and needs a loving hand. The original pictures in Mt. Pleasant beautiful shows quite the gorgeous lady. Love her well and enjoy.

  23. Avatar9210 says: 2 comments

    Stay tuned…the best is yet to come…..

  24. Kelly, Old House DreamsKelly, Old House Dreams says: 10079 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    I’m seeing this possibly sold. I’m seeing on the county website, it says there was a “Contract” in January and now shows a contract holder and deed holder. Not sure what that means.

    • Chris DiMatteiChris DiMattei says: 261 comments

      Yes, this house was sold to people who intend to restore it. I am in contact with them, but they have a mountain of work to do, as this house was chopped up, abused, and then neglected. Mount Pleasant is a preservation minded community, so I hope they extend the new homeowners a hand, and pitch in when appropriate.

  25. AvatarChrystal Blythe says: 1 comments

    If there is another house like this I would love to purchase it. Totally beautiful.

  26. Chris DiMatteiChris DiMattei says: 261 comments

    Chrystal, I know of 48 other examples of this exact same design, built throughout North America. I am not sure if any of them are currently for sale, but I wouldn’t be surprised if some are. It was a very popular Barber design, and many of the surviving examples are in good shape and cherished by their current owners.

    • AvatarTony says: 3 comments

      Chris, are you well informed as to a lot of Barber designs? I’ve been curious about seeing homes built based on a certain design of his. It’s design 200 from the 1905 catelog.

      • Christopher DiMatteiChristopher DiMattei says: 261 comments

        Tony, I know the design you speak of, very well. Many of them have been lost, however, there are several out there, in pretty good condition. If you find yourself in Little Falls, MN, visit the Welcome Center for the Convention and Visitors Bureau. The welcome center there, is an example of that particular Barber design. There is also one in Milford, PA that serves as a local museum and history center. Thanks for the comment.

  27. AvatarJane says: 1 comments

    James Franklin Allender owned this home until his death in 1920. After this it became a fraternity house and his widow Ida was the matron of the frat house. She is listed as still living there in 1930 but not 1940. I have an old family photo of the Allender clan which I believe was taken in this house. Does anyone know who the current owner is so I can send them a copy of the photo?

  28. Avatar9210 says: 2 comments

    Owners are nearly done with removing all the alterations to the house from the frat house/apartments era. Restoration is in the wings.
    Try email at hoydog9210@hotmail.com

  29. Avatarlea Cure says: 1 comments

    hello, my name is Lea Cure, my husband’s grandfather built houses and was a master carpenter from that town from 1887 until the Civil War and after until 1883. I often wondered if there were any places around that the man could have built back then. His name was Augustus Cure. Thank you Lea


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