c. 1875 Italianate – Terre Haute, IN

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Added to OHD on 7/28/14   -   Last OHD Update: 10/14/19   -   32 Comments

1199 W Rigney Dr, Terre Haute, IN

Map: Street

  • $23,400
  • 4 Bed
  • 2 Bath
  • 3211 Sq Ft
  • 2.92 Ac.
Restore the grandeur of this historic home! One of the oldest homes in Vigo County. Built in 1824. 2.92 acres on the south side.
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30 Comments on c. 1875 Italianate – Terre Haute, IN

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  1. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 11732 comments
    Admin

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Realtor is showing this priced at $23,400. A build date of 1824? Could this have started out as an early Greek Revival turned Italianate?

  2. Paul W says: 539 comments

    The window /door detail is consistent with Greek revival and federal details, combine that with the low windows and its entirely possible 1820’s with a 1870ish Italianate porch. The house did not get the typical late Victorian upgrades. It also does not appear to have been ‘apartmented’ which often happened with larger homes in Terre Haute (college town), most likely because this is a ways out. Its hard for me to get excited about this house as its early and more simple, but the price seems good for that area.

  3. Karen says: 133 comments

    it has an assortment of windows – six over six, two over two, and one over one – makes it difficult in pictures to know what’s original. The kitchen is not, obviously, and I wonder what that spiral stair replaced. I think it has loads of potential if the structure is sound.

  4. Bethany says: 3322 comments

    I really like this place. If I had reason to move there, I would be so “in.” At that price and with my handy-man husband to boot, we could really turn it around.

  5. John Shiflet says: 5397 comments

    I personally did not see anything 1824-ish about this house. Some details, as Paul noted, do seem to suggest a possible pre-Civil War origin but 1824 would have been fairly early for Terre Haute. Most homes in the area dating that far back were simplified Federal era examples. The Greek Revival style would have been cutting-edge new for the western frontier (Terre Haute is in far western Indiana) in 1824 because it was just then becoming popular back East at that time. I suppose its possible some parts of this house date back to the 1820’s but the current look appears to date from around 1870 based on the exterior portico and staircase details. More research would be needed to confirm or change the claimed construction date. More work would be needed to re-create a period feel and appearance in this house but there are enough stylistic (early Italianate) clues to take it in that direction if a new owner wished. It seems priced reasonably for the features offered.

  6. joyjoy says: 71 comments

    This house is in Honey Creek Township in Vigo County Indiana. The house is listed as being built in 1824 according to city/county records. The house was one of several houses on the property of A. McPheeters in the Atlas Map of Vigo County Indiana in 1874. I found an interesting story regarding an Alexander McPheeters:

    http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GSln=mcpheeters&GSiman=1&GScid=85465&GRid=18248910&

    There were 2 Alexander McPheeters- father and son; I do not know which one inhabited this house.

    1
  7. John Shiflet says: 5397 comments

    Joy, that ghastly account of murder-suicide really sends chills up the spine! The first thing the new owners might want to do is get a priest to bless the house and banish evil spirits. Alternately, have a paranormal research group check the place out. New Albany is in the southeastern edge of Indiana some distance away from Terre Haute which is on the western fringe-it must have been a sensational story at the time-the kind we now seen on the major TV networks investigative journalism stories. That story certainly changes the flavor of this property-I’d be interested in hearing from former owners/residents if they experienced anything strange here. In any case, it provides something of interest besides the usual architecture and property features. Thanks for digging this out.

  8. Mel P says: 1 comments

    I drove by this house today, as I would love to purchase it and renovate it. Unfortunately, what the pictures about do not include is a tree that has crushed the second story on the rear of the house. It appears to be open to the elements and each rainstorm we have is going to hurt the integrity of that section of the house.

  9. John Shiflet says: 5397 comments

    The sellers should get right on the damaged area to remove the damaged components and as soon as possible get a temporary roof put over it. It would cost far less to make these emergency repairs than to allow water to ruin floors, joists, and eventually make this house unsalable at any price. (beyond land value) Even if the sellers had to increase the price to pay for the repairs, it would be the sensible step to take. Alternately, solicit bid offers or hold an auction and sell it quickly with protective covenants so the buyers don’t demolish it. A house open to the elements has a very short window of time before extensive damage results. Sad to hear this news.

    1
    • joy says: 71 comments

      I believe that according to city/county records this house is bank owned. The mortgage companies/banks don’t often seem as concerned about maintaining the integrity of the homes as they should be. I have seen many bank owned homes that have deteriorated (more) after foreclosure.

      • John Shiflet says: 5397 comments

        If its bank-owned, then all the more reason why it should be repaired as they carry insurance on their REO properties. They should file an insurance claim for the storm damage from the tree to the roof and get it repaired, ASAP. Alternately, auction the property off for whatever they can get and write off any losses.

        1
  10. Paul W says: 539 comments

    The reality is that this is probably in “major write off” anyway as far as the bank is concerned. Far more likely at the rates contractors would charge to “stabilize” it, the bank can demo for 8-12K and maybe sell the lot but that takes time.

    Banks usually don’t insure these as its not cost effective so if its a loss its a loss.

    If someone wants this, they could offer the bank 8-10K with an ‘as-is’ condition and own it. But I would hurry because it wouldn’t surprise me if they are already getting demo bids (if they know the tree fell and certainly as soon as they do).

    Our neighborhood Association deals with banks a lot and if they have to demo it (or think they will have too) they often take 10-20 cents on the dollar.

  11. Cory B says: 1 comments

    My wife and I checked it out yesterday. There was no weird vibes or unsettled feelings but we noticed its going to need a lot of work!!! We are currently in the process of putting in a bid and seeing where it goes from there. I am compiling some research on the property so when I get it all together I’ll post it here.

    2
  12. John Shiflet says: 5397 comments

    Good Luck, Cory. Houses like this one need new owners more focused on saving the history and architecture of the past than crunching numbers to come up with a post-restoration resale value. Labor of love projects are always a challenge but when they come together success is all the more sweeter.

    1
  13. RosewaterRosewater says: 5614 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1875 Italianate cottage
    Noblesville, IN

    I visited this house this afternoon and was hoping to get good documentary photos of the exterior, and previously mentioned damage. Let me just say that THIS HOUSE IS A STEAL!!! It is straight up SOLID, from the 8′ full basement to the attic above. I walked all through it and swear I didn’t hear a single creak of a loose floor board thruought. The original part of the building is built four bricks thick; two over two over two rooms; with the same configuration in the rear L. All interior walls are supported by the same four thick brick walls right down to the footers below the brick basement floors. The basement itself is in very good condition, and only has a slight moisture issue owing to the water infiltration from the positively decrepit, early 1980’s addition at the back, which was left to rot away for some weird reason. The house sits on a nice, dry, rise in the land, and appears to have no drainage issues at all, aside from the obvious neglect. As to that; the roof on the original T house is in stable shape, though it does need to be replaced. There appears to be no water penetration in the original structure, aside from the small amount coming in from the minimal damage caused by the fallen tree over the kitchen. There is significant water coming in to the two ground floor rooms in the L due to the positively rotten roof of the 80’s addition coming down the hall and into those spaces. The 80’s addition consists of a small room of unknown use, and a full bathroom, both over a crawl and at ground floor level. There is a small connecting hall which goes down three steps where there is a laundry room and mud room with closets on a slab. The slab then continues into an oversized two car garage. As mentioned, for some reason, these spaces were allowed to become completely destroyed because the roof failed and rotted away. The good news is that the slab itself is of good quality; and the walls seem to have remained plumb. I would say that all of these spaces are saveable with a new roof and a gut tear out.
    There is sooooooo much to recommend this house; the first being the price; also the style, solidity, and amazing amount of decorative features and fixtures which remain. There are many original doors with there hardware still intact. All of the moldings, trim, and the stunning heart pine floors are still there, and mostly in remarkably good condition. The front stair is missing one or two spindles, but is rock solid banister and flight. All of the rooms are very spacious, bright and cheerful, even through the dust and schmutz. Anywhere you see peeling wallpaper this seems to be caused by ambient moisture in the house from the failed roof at the back, and not form water intrusion.
    The house sits on a little, paved country lane, very close to shopping and all the best conveniences the town has to offer, while at the same time sitting on a quiet, tree lined, spacious piece of ground. All of the nearby homes are well maintained and in good repair; including the equally special, historic, Italianate house across the road and down a ways. The house next door is nice, as are the owners, and they seem to be the ones mowing the expansive lawns and watching over the place.
    I LOVE this house; and if it was anywhere in Hamilton County, I’d move a mountain to have it for myself. It really is a gem in the rough, but surprisingly not that rough, excluding the roached out addition. I reeeeeeally hope somebody buys this house to restore. I’d say it could be done for, mmmeeh, $80G if you’re willing to do the “small” stuff yourself…

    The pictures can bee seen here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/regulusalpha/sets/72157646650477565/ and Kelly, you’re welcome to choose them as you like for this page. I set the rights setting to share alike, so you should be able to clip them without trouble. If not LMK. Knowing FLICKR it might not work right.

    Also, though I remember having an uneasy feelings about this house YEARS ago, I felt nothing but good vibes the whole time I was on the property and in the house. The only sadness I experienced was the house itself positively crying out for someone to love it..

    Also: this house was built between 1870 and 1880, and shows no sign of incorporating any previous structure into it’s current fabric. There may have been and earlier house on the land, but I saw no sign of this.

    BTW: the shot of the concrete mound with the manhole cover is a wonderfully preserved, and possibly operable, cistern system. I would kill for one of those…

    Happy to answer any questions… Jeff

    2
    • John Shiflet says: 5397 comments

      Thanks for going the extra preservation mile, Jeff. It will take a full commitment and some investment to turn this house around. My understanding about the roof damage is that a large tree fell on it. Cisterns are pretty cool-if there is some filtration to keep out leaves, etc. the water is often of drinking quality. (but would likely need some kind of chemical treatment to kill off microbes?) I think the cistern water could easily be used for plant and animal purposes. You are the second visitor-see above-to claim no bad vibes (paranormal) were experienced-maybe any resident ghoulies were banished by a previous owner? It would be too big of a project to tackle myself but for an energetic younger person with restoration skills the results could be impressive. Thanks for checking it out.

      1
      • RosewaterRosewater says: 5614 comments
        OHD Supporter

        1875 Italianate cottage
        Noblesville, IN

        I got good shots of the tree damage John. Only one branch of the VERY large tree fell. The damage is minimal at worst. Check out the pix. The paneled room towards the end of the images shows the small hole in the ceiling caused by the tree. There has been only very slight water damage there and below in the kitchen because of this, and only slight structural damage. The water in the kitchen is coming from the 80’s addition with Hansen’s disease…

        1
    • Joy says: 71 comments

      Thanks for the great additional photos. Now that you brought photographic evidence to light, I guess I can see from Google maps that the roof on the rear addition is in deplorable condition. I wonder how long this house has been empty and deteriorating?

      • RosewaterRosewater says: 5614 comments
        OHD Supporter

        1875 Italianate cottage
        Noblesville, IN

        Fortunately, It’s just the single story, modern addition which is deplorable. The historic fabric of the house is mostly intact, and solid as a rock, with very little damage whatsoever..

  14. RossRoss says: 2524 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
    Emporia, KS

    Thanks Rosewater! It is nice to see more of the house!

  15. Dr. O says: 41 comments

    Oh, this is the murderer’s house! I read about it on here and couldn’t remember which one it was. Any news to report? Did it sell?

  16. RosewaterRosewater says: 5614 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1875 Italianate cottage
    Noblesville, IN

    Showing sold 8/27/14 for $23,5K. Hope they got the roof patched before winter. It really wasn’t that bad; just the addition.

  17. Tim says: 1 comments

    I had a childhood friend that lived in this house and I spent many many nights in this house. Not one ghost story to tell it looks a lot like it did when I would visit. to tell you the truth never heard the story of the murder. and the only out building I remember was a tact building for horses. always loved this house.

    1
  18. RosewaterRosewater says: 5614 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1875 Italianate cottage
    Noblesville, IN

    Sure hope we hear from the new owner on this one. If you are that owner and see this, please say howdy and let us know how it’s going! Cheers! 🙂

  19. misskimi says: 4 comments

    Looked up the address to see if anyone was renovating and discovered that the house is known as the “Lambert-Dickson House” I am not computer savvy enough to add it to the website link or photo wise…but if anyone who is interested does a Google search of that term, you get quite a bit of info on the origination of the home, including an old drawing of the property. Apparently the first home built was lost in a fire and the owners built this one with brick and extra sturdy to avoid a second loss. It seems it may have part of an 1816 mill on the same property. I came across an article strongly implying that this place HAS been renovated and a local announcement of a tour date for it for members of a local group, but haven’t found any new pictures unfortunately (yet). Article about owners and renovation dated Nov 2015.

  20. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 11732 comments
    Admin

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    No new street view but the aerial view shows that it looks like it has been updated and is being lived in.

    Rosewater…this wasn’t the same home that we inadvertently insulted the owners when we saw the new updates was it? It was a similar home but don’t remember which it was.

    1
    • RosewaterRosewater says: 5614 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1875 Italianate cottage
      Noblesville, IN

      Heheheh. No, that was up in Montezuma. That was a sad outcome.
      It’s not the one still on the site BTW:
      https://www.oldhousedreams.com/2019/01/08/1854-montezuma-in/
      It was this one: before pix still avail on Realtor;
      https://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/821-N-Jefferson-St_Montezuma_IN_47862_M33064-68849#photo0
      That really broke my heart since it was so well preserved: rough but mostly very original. Now it’s all plastic and drywall: and she was so proud. It must have been quite a surprise when she didn’t get the reaction she thought she would get posting about her “restoration” on that thread. Heheheh. She was young: and in fairness, there is no free manual you receive on how best to proceed when you buy an antique house. 😉

      I almost drove by this TH place the last time I was over there; but time prevented. Thanks’ for the update, Kelly! Those folks got a DEAL.

      • Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 11732 comments
        Admin

        1901 Folk Victorian
        Chestatee, GA

        Oh yeah, now I ‘member…yeah, it was disappointing. And I think she said she had sold the original windows too…or turned them into art…something. (We are talking about another home, not the posted one.)

        1

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