1878 Queen Anne – Manchester, NH

Off Market / Archived
Details below are from October 2015, sold status has not been verified.
To verify, check the listing links below. DO NOT trespass to verify status!

Added to OHD on 10/19/15   -   Last OHD Update: 4/12/20   -   112 Comments

147 Walnut St, Manchester, NH 03104

  • $29,900
  • 20 Bed
  • 7 Bath
  • 9505 Sq Ft
BUILDING ONLY. The George B Chandler Home. ASSESSED AT $639,900! Be part of history and assist The Roman Catholic Church, the Manchester Historic Association and The NH Historic Society as we all rally to save, restore and protect one of Manchester's and NH's most elegant, astonishing and Historic icons. (SW Corner of Beech and Myrtle St). This 30 room modified, Queen Ann Victorian mansion MUST BE MOVED and relocated to another location which will enhance its stature, historical significance and monetary value. Projected uses are endless for residential, commercial, office, lodging or civic organizational uses. Additional, ornate architectural features hidden under siding. You could instantly become part of Manchester History. Your legacy could be preservation of this beautiful estate for all future generations to enjoy. Join with us in this journey, labor of love! Property being conveyed AS IS". Seller makes no warranties and is not responsible for conditions contained within.
Contact Information
Gregory Barrett, Kas-Bar Realty
(603) 624-1766
Links, Photos & Additional Info

State: | Region: | Associated Styles or Type:
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112 Comments on 1878 Queen Anne – Manchester, NH

OHD does not represent this home. Comments are not monitored by the agent. Status, price and other details may not be current, verify using the listing links up top. Contact the agent if you are interested in this home.
  1. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12797 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Found this 1892 illustrated print of the home on Amazon, not sure where they got the print.

    1892 Print George Byron Chandler Manchester Home Residence Architecture House NH – Original Halftone Print

    • KimT says: 74 comments

      Thanks! The front facade was certainly much better-balanced initially.

    • Gregory K. Hubbard says: 446 comments

      There are loads of ‘book breakers,’ who buy antique architectural books and periodicals to cut up for stock for their stores and listings. I overheard on such dealer complain that it was becoming more and more difficult to find books to cut up!
      As out President would say, so sad!

  2. Amy says: 1 comments

    Wow, it is beautiful! I absolutely love the detail on the ceiling…gorgeous.

  3. LydiaO says: 22 comments

    O.M.G. Look at the Lincrusta! The woodwork! The stained glass! The plaster ceiling! This house has it all. I hope someone can buy and and move it. I wish that someone could be me!!

  4. Laurie says: 3 comments

    Very Beautiful home. I absolutely love that there is a church in there. I wonder if they use it as an elderly home?

    • RosewaterRosewater says: 7676 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1875 Italianate cottage
      Noblesville, IN

      I’m sure Jim can tell us for sure; but my guess is that this house was donated to the Catholic diocese at some point, (probably by the original family), for use as a parish house, retreat, bishopric, or some such. No doubt they need the land for other uses, hence the need for the move. This sort of situation is not uncommon.

      • JimHJimH says: 5764 comments
        OHD Supporter

        Jeff, I wish I could track down the exact history but I’m coming up short so far. The first owner George B. Chandler died in 1905, his widow stayed here only five years. They were Unitarian, not Catholic. I only find the house associated with St. Hedwig’s from around 1960, but it’s a blank before that. I’d guess they bought the full block including the house to build the church there; the house was the rectory.

        • Don says: 1 comments

          I remember this house as a youngster. The house became the residence for the Bishop of Manchester,NH. He moved to a new home and gave the residence to the De La Salle Christian Brothers who were in charge of the local boys Catholic High School. When the Brothers built their own new residence in 1962 the Diocese gave the residence to the Felician Sisters who thaught in the elementary school tied to St. Hedwigs Church. I remember sitting in that foyer as a child while my parents met with the principal of the HS.

  5. Hayden says: 1 comments

    But how much is it gonna cost to move it?

    • Steve H says: 141 comments

      And how far would you have to move it? If a lot could be found a block or two away it might not be so bad. If you had to move it across town I could see the cost becoming astronomical.

  6. Frank D. Myers says: 56 comments

    I’m guessing use as a convent or clerical residence associated with a church and/or school. The high quality of the conversion of the former parlor into a chapel suggests it’s been church-affiliated for a long time. Beautiful detail.

  7. RossRoss says: 2457 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
    Emporia, KS

    Moving houses used to be common.

    Any building can be moved, even the Empire State Building!

    It seems like magic to most people, but to a qualified moving company it is no big deal.

    This house is a treasure.

    • KimT says: 74 comments

      Can a house this big really be moved without disassembling at least part of it?

      What about the stained glass? Do those panels have to be removed or are they usually just reinforced somehow?

      In addition to size, I’ve been wondering about potential limitations such as what sort of surface is required to move a house on once it leaves a paved road?

      And what about slope of hills getting it onto and off the moving vehicle?

      Incredible house, worth pulling out all the stops to move. Do historical societies usually look into the practicalities such as the above? The ones involved here seem to have put some heavy conditions on the new location/use.

      Hopefully the historical societies and the museum are already considering your suggestion below!

      • JimHJimH says: 5764 comments
        OHD Supporter

        KimT, house-moving is actually a very slow and smooth process with precision computer-controlled equipment that doesn’t shake or rattle anything. You don’t even have to pack up the china. A relative of mine moved his old house to the other side of his large property up a muddy hill in the rain. Boards were laid down as it went very slowly. The move itself was done in half a day with no problems.
        The house-movers can take care of all the technical issues and some of the logistical ones also, but the real estate and financial challenges here are daunting. The historic societies can help get some grants, though only a fraction of the cost can be expected.
        Usually, by the time a high profile opportunity like this hits the open real estate market, especially with the involvement of the non-profits, the big money local donors, investors, art patrons, etc have already passed on it – that’s troubling to me.

        • KimT says: 74 comments

          Thanks…that is very encouraging. I haven’t actually talked to any moving companies yet but I remember from looking at web sites that one company wanted potential clients to scope out the route.

          Am thinking of my mother’s chicken coops being moved by computer and then this house. Whew. Amazing!

          The interior shots seem to show the house in quite good condition so it makes me wonder about the roof. If it’s been well-maintained in combo with the stunning interior that has to put it above many candidates.

          We can only hope the house has a prayer or two left up its sleeve.

  8. Mark Moody says: 13 comments

    The initial cost of the home itself is by far the smallest fraction of the overall investment. Moving costs in many cases are dependent upon the city involved. Permits required and utility companies involvement during the moving process can greatly increase the headache. Moving a home this large entails a reputable mover ( not an easy selection process). In most cases once the building is placed on its new site the home is treated like new construction to be brought up to code.

  9. AnnaP says: 38 comments

    What a beautiful home – I wish I could move it to Wisconsin!

    A Victorian home in my town was recently moved about a block (it was about 2,000 sq ft) – the house itself was bought for $1, and the owners paid $20,000 to have it moved. I believe they’re also putting in another $100,000 for other improvements including a new foundation. I’m sure this huge house would cost much more to move, though. It’s so beautiful and looks like it has an interesting history – I hope someone saves it!

  10. Paula says: 92 comments

    I wonder how far I could move that? Winter is going to tough again here in NH. It sure is lovely.

  11. Angie Martin says: 6 comments

    Wowzers! This house would make a perfect funeral home!

  12. tiffaney jewel says: 78 comments

    How much would it cost to move this to MD? Anyone have experience with this?

  13. MW says: 947 comments

    A very small house was just moved a couple blocks around here in Oakland, CA just this past Sat and they claimed it was going to cost about $67K, just for the move itself, plus they had to spend about another $100K for a new basement and fixing up the house once in place. So, the whole thing will cost them about $170K. But that is pretty darn cheap as compared to building it new from scratch in this area. Honestly, people spend that much on typical house remodels all the time around here.


    In this case, they not only got the house for free, they also got $20K to help move it. However, as above that didn’t even begin to cover the cost to move it. The permits alone were apparently $18K. But that is here in the San Francisco Bay Area, land of beyond crazy housing costs.

  14. Michele says: 89 comments

    Wow, so beautiful!!

  15. missd67 says: 8 comments

    too beautiful. How much to move it to AZ?

  16. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12797 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    “How much to move to…” is an impossible thing to know because of the many factors involved. Also I believe the local historical society and others would like it to stay within the same city/county and not shipped to another state (and honestly that would be more financially feasible than dismantling it and shipping it hundreds or thousands of miles away.)

    The home belongs to the church, although not sure how long they’ve owned it or what the current use is for.

    • Paula says: 92 comments

      I live in New Hampshire. I’m very serious about this house but looking for a spot(land) for it. I live an hour from Manchester.

    • Jill says: 11 comments

      One of my favorite things is to read the comments from people who knew a property or lived there.

      Glad to know I’m not the only person who will O.D. On nostalgia!

      Thanks to all

  17. RossRoss says: 2457 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
    Emporia, KS

    Directly behind the house is the Currier Museum of Art.

    And behind the museum is a large entry drive, and parking lot (for only 49 cars).

    One idea would be to put the house where the parking is, and put the parking in a garage underneath.

    The house could be surrounded by a garden, and could act as an annex to the museum, showing works of art.

    It seems the house is ideal for showing pre-1900 art in an environment to which it was intended.

    I would certainly rather see art in such an intimate setting, rather than sterile museum galleries.

    People pay millions for a single work of art. Why isn’t this gorgeous house any less a work of art? Would we allow a Monet, for example, to be cut up and sold in small bits if it did not find a buyer? I can just hear the auctioneer barking: “Who will give me $20,000 for this one-inch square by the famous Monet?”

    Just a thought….

  18. Mellie says: 3 comments

    It would be interesting to know more history on this house.

  19. Scott Cunningham says: 397 comments

    A worthy project. The advantage of a move is that you get to pick a nice spot (perhaps on or overlooking some water), and also get to put in a full, stable, modern basement under it. Wow!! If I were in NH I’d be seriously interested.

  20. JimHJimH says: 5764 comments
    OHD Supporter

    This is a difficult project. The house is worthy of extraordinary efforts to save it, but a relocation on this scale requires long-term planning. Finding a site on short notice in the middle of a city isn’t easy. There are very few vacant lots around and buying a building is expensive. The house can’t go very far as-is – it’s wider than the streets. Cutting it into manageable parts can be done but leaves a mark and adds to cost. The actual move is the easy part!
    Maybe they have a plan to share with qualified buyers. The listing language “Be part of history and assist … as we all rally” suggests they have something up their sleeve – let’s hope so anyway. If it’s all on the buyer to figure it out it’s a very tough nut, even with a few grants and lots of moral support.

  21. MadHatter says: 1 comments

    Does it have to stay in NH?

  22. Ernie says: 115 comments

    Can they move it through crowded city streets?

    Pick the right proffessionals and yes they can.

    Watch a time lapse video of the relocation of a historic Chicago mansion


  23. Ernie says: 115 comments

    Historic homes can even halved ferried over waterways to new building sites rejoined on new foundations and restored


  24. Paul W says: 464 comments

    Moving is certainly possible, anyone of the “national’ home movers can do this , cost will depend on if they have to section the house, distance of move. Cost of dropping utilities, the regulatory permits, street closing permits etc . House this size figure 100K off the bat. Lot acquisition 50-100k, utilities run from street 30K, Foundation and basement this size 80-100K. Mechanical and ‘code work’ could be as much as another 200K. Not to mention lead abatement, painting the exterior etc PLUS any actual restoration work needed

    I have found that East Coast contractors are bidding everything considerable higher lately (they think the economy has recovered) and there is a shortage of specialty people who do decorative plaster etc.

    Real world; you are 800K to a million but if you put that in context with quality and caliber of the home its not a bad deal. This would require an individual with lost of money for the unforeseen (hard to get financing on this kind of thing), the patience to deal with insane contractor bids, Finding the crafts persons necessary to do the delicate work this home will require. Scheduling a house move is like orchestrating a symphony of trades people used to working at their own pace.

    Its probably ‘most viable’ as some sort of commercial use once moved. This is frankly more than a house, it is a work of art, as others have noted. The problem is there are lots of people who are devoted to the arts, but few who view a house in the same light.

    Hoping for the best on this one. It would be criminal to see it salvaged.

  25. Julles says: 557 comments

    This house is exquisite. It is like a fine old master’s painting. Although, I don’t quite understand what the architectural element is on the left side of the front facade. Is it dutch or maybe a spanish influence?
    I keep thinking what would I do with all those bedrooms. When my son was a year old, we spent 4 years with him in and out of the hospital with a deadly lung disease. I always thought it would be such a blessing for those parents with sick kids in the hospital to have a place to stay near the hospital instead of sleeping in a chair in the waiting room. The chapel would be much appreciated as well. I’m a social worker. Anyone have the money to fund the venture?

  26. LynnLynn says: 74 comments
    OHD Supporter

    When I first saw the outside of this house, I thought yeah it’s ok. Then I saw the inside and my mouth dropped open. This house is definitely worth saving. The woodwork and all the other details are astounding! I live outside of St. Louis and this reminds me of the situation between the Samuel Cupples house and St. Louis University. SLU, a Catholic school, bought a lot of the land surrounding the Cupples house and originally wanted to tear it down as it had all the other historic houses on its property. Because of the valiant efforts of one particular priest (can’t recall his name at the moment) this particular mansion was saved. They turned it into a museum of sorts and the public is allowed to tour it for free. The Cupples mansion sits in the midst of the university and I’m so grateful someone went to great lengths to save it. I hope a similar situation can happen for this lovely mansion.

  27. TimothyTimothy says: 140 comments

    What a truly GRAND home, but what would be the cost to move it? I imagine that it would be incredibly expensive.

  28. Karrie says: 218 comments

    If money was not an object, I would buy this home in a heartbeat. It is so well preserved and the chapel can be removed and the room back to its original use. This home is just too beautiful for words. I pray someone will buy it and have it moved and restore it. It would make a wonderful B&B… Save this wonderful historic home, please someone save her!

  29. EyesOnYou1959EyesOnYou1959 says: 242 comments
    Lincoln, NE

    Such a spectacular home! I would move in today if I could! I’ve seen and
    heard of moving homes from one location to another……but how could you
    possibly move such a large home without dismantling it and reassembling
    it at the new location??

    It would be so very nice to see more photos of the interior and see if it
    has ever had any updates to the electrical & plumbing/heating etc.

  30. Dionysia says: 12 comments

    Moving it is possible. All it takes is money.

  31. Robb H says: 186 comments

    As some people know, we are moving to New England. I plan to see this house sometime this weekend. I will see what I can find out about the place and what group(s) may be working on this house project. I suspect there is an active group who wants it but does not have the money to do so.

    I do know there is beautiful carved stone behind some of the siding. I do not know how much.

  32. DaniGirl says: 1 comments

    Why can’t it stay on the plot?

  33. JimHJimH says: 5764 comments
    OHD Supporter

    This hit the TV news in Manchester today. Not surprisingly, the church needs a parking lot but “they’re being sympathetic to the historical significance of the home”. BS! The realtor estimated a cost of $2-300K to move it “locally”. Sure.
    The historical info in the piece is incorrect; the owner was a banker who never ran a mill. His son Byron “Monkey” Chandler, the Millionaire Kid of Broadway, married vaudeville star Grace LaRue (look her up!) and 3 other starlets, if you must know.

    • Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12797 comments

      1901 Folk Victorian
      Chestatee, GA

      Well they could have sold it off in parts so at least they are trying to find someone that can move it. Maybe there isn’t a time limit, like “must be moved by OR…”

      • JimHJimH says: 5764 comments
        OHD Supporter

        True, they own it and can do what they like. We’ll see how far they’re willing to go to save it – could just be PR so far. (remember Inisfada!)

        The house was here before they were, and they’ve already dishonored that.

        • RossRoss says: 2457 comments
          OHD Supporter

          1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
          Emporia, KS

          In a hundred years this is the America I envision:

          There will be nine buildings across the entire country.

          The rest will have been replaced with parking lots.

          And yet, still, people will cry: But there isn’t enough parking!

          • says: 101 comments

            I know! It makes me want to cry that they can’t figure out a better way to use the space without disrupting this amazing beautiful work of art.

  34. kizilod says: 43 comments

    This local TV news story has more info, a short video, and a few photos: http://www.wmur.com/news/historic-manchester-mansion-on-sale-for-shockingly-low-price/35952966

    According to the report “The entire structure must be moved to make way for a parking lot, which will give the aging parish of St. Hedwig next door easier access to worship.”

    • RossRoss says: 2457 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
      Emporia, KS

      Parking could be added on the south and north sides of the church.

      Parking could also be added where the large lawn now is (in front of the mansion). This would not be ideal, of course, but better than destroying the mansion.

      People tend not to be creative when it comes to parking solutions.

    • MW says: 947 comments

      Make way for a parking lot! Wow, now that is sad. Have these people never heard of shuttle buses or anything like that if they can’t walk from the street where they apparently come from now? Potentially destroying this house for a parking lot to make it easier for people get to church? How many people go to this church? Looks like there should be tons of easy street parking all around it. How much easier do they need it to be? If nothing else, just pave over the yard and put 10-20 spots around the house. Still pathetic, but at least the house doesn’t need to be moved or more likely demolished. Seems like these people need a better architect and planning advisers to help them solve their problems.

      • JimHJimH says: 5764 comments
        OHD Supporter

        MW, this is a dying parish and apparently someone thinks better parking will revive the church. Monsignor Daniszewski, who ran the parish for 40 years from his office in the house, died last year at age 95. Maybe he prevented this from happening before now. The new man is Rev. Msgr. Anthony R. Frontiero, same address: 147 Walnut Street, Manchester, NH 03104.

        • MW says: 947 comments

          I sort of figured as much looking at the church on the street view. Looks like the church itself could use some sprucing up and while not bad, appears to be no architectural award winner itself.


          Maybe they need to find a new location for the church vs. tear stuff down around this one. While I try my best to not be of the mind that we have to save them all. In this case, I do feel this is a very bad reason to lose this nice old house. The house is far more interesting and better architecture than that church, and certainly better than a paved parking lot. That is just such classic 50-70’s modernization failure, it is hard to believe they think this is a good idea now to try to pull this.

          I also can’t believe the city would even let them do it. Maybe they won’t unless they can actually find someone to move the house to a nearby suitable location and that is the only reason why they are offering it this way. And like you suggest, maybe short of that, it possibly would have been bulldozed a long time ago. Hopefully the people in the area and the city have a grip on this to some degree.

          I am all for development, but it has to be good development. Unfortunately this one is starting with what appears to be some extremely unfortunate self-interested motivation.

          Worse case scenario (and a very likely one), they don’t find a buyer for the house, tear it down anyway with or without proper permission, build the parking lot and then 5 years later close the parish anyway because not enough parishioners despite having a beautiful new parking lot, church building sits empty for 10-15 years until it gets torn down as well. Almost sadly too predicable.

          • RossRoss says: 2457 comments
            OHD Supporter

            1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
            Emporia, KS


            You wrote: “Worse case scenario (and a very likely one), they don’t find a buyer for the house, tear it down anyway with or without proper permission, build the parking lot and then 5 years later close the parish anyway because not enough parishioners despite having a beautiful new parking lot, church building sits empty for 10-15 years until it gets torn down as well. Almost sadly too predicable.”

            Well put.

          • JimHJimH says: 5764 comments
            OHD Supporter

            MW, I agree with you that this is a bad idea on all levels. Cities rarely have the legal authority or political spine to stop demolition of homes, though they can impede it for years. The church realizes this since they got the historical societies involved, and their realtor is saying sympathetic things. The usual ploy is to go through the motions, offering slight assistance, then saying “We tried” before calling in the bulldozer.
            It’s hard to believe that this house has never been registered as a Historical Place. Churches usually don’t want their properties registered so they can be free to alter them, but others can do it – I wouldn’t be surprised if someone is working on the NRHP nomination already.

            • RossRoss says: 2457 comments
              OHD Supporter

              1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
              Emporia, KS

              Being on the National Register offers zero protection.

              My own house is on the National Register. I can knock it down tomorrow if I want.

              If a property is in a historic district, this normally DOES offer some protection.

              In the UK, it is much much tougher to demolish a historic property.

              • JimHJimH says: 5764 comments
                OHD Supporter

                NRHP designations by themselves don’t protect properties anywhere but local ordinances can use NRHP status to impose restrictions on alteration or demolition of registered properties or those in historic districts. I don’t know if that’s the case in Manchester (probably not), though registering the house would at least document it. Any further effect would depend completely on the language of the local ordinance. Demolition Holds for registered buildings can buy valuable time in some cases.

  35. NCFOB says: 1 comments

    The Catholic Church is on a parking lot shopping spree with the higher ups instructing local parishes to acquire land for installing parking lots or build on property they already own. It makes me wonder if more church closings are not too far behind for the parishes without parking. Tearing down beloved historic buildings will do little to attract young people to the Church and one has to wonder what will congregations look like in twenty years when all the elderly parishioners are no longer with us. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gGvF54QTZvA

  36. Mark says: 16 comments

    I knew a family who inherited property from grandparents in Wisconsin. The family I knew lived in Seattle. They had the house disassembled and moved it to their Seattle property and reconstructed it. At the time it cost over one million to do. That was nearly 40 years ago. I can only imagine what it would cost to move this home even within the city. Love it though, fun to dream.

    • Ernie says: 115 comments

      Odd, I too was wishing I could bring this house out to the Seattle area where I live. But instead of taking it apart and trucking it overland I was thinking the best method would be to put it on a barge and bring it out to the left coast via the Panama Canal directly to my Puget Sound waterfront location. But at this point using aliens to teleport it might prove to be a far more cost effective method.

  37. says: 101 comments

    Here’s an idea: Move the church to a nice big parking lot that already exists! Replant a yard and garden around this house. Win-win.

  38. RossRoss says: 2457 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
    Emporia, KS

    Within a few blocks of this house there are two public parks.

    I could see the house being moved to one of the parks, and being used in a way to benefit the public.


    Small museum?

    Historical society?

    If not, I will go out in my yard late late late tonight, see if I can spot some aliens up in the sky, signal them with a flashlight (and telepathic thoughts) , and request that they pick the house up with a light beam, and drop it off (gently!) across the street from my big old house here in Kansas.

    Problem resolved.

  39. MW says: 947 comments

    Judging by the old illustration of the house that Kelly posted in the first post, it would suggest they probably tore down the awesome looking and huge carriage house that was on the property, likely when they built the church to begin with would be my guess. So, finishing off the house itself with the parking lot might not be much of a stretch for those parishioners who remember back when that happen, might have even been part of the original plan for the church to begin with.

    Also looks like the house is now missing the little curved roof second story porch on the front. Wonder why and how that got torn off. Looked better with it of course.


  40. RustyNH says: 11 comments

    This house was named on the annual list of seven endangered properties to be saved in NH yesterday. The timing of that list coming out and this place being listed seems an odd co incidence. The article that listed the seven properties says the house must be moved by 11/30 or it will be demolished. What is the rush? It almost seems like they are creating an impossible situation on purpose. One could not complete the transaction, find a mover and move it on such short notice. I live in NH and hope to attend the open house Sat. This is my first time posting a comment but I have enjoyed this site for about 10 months. By the way, I purchased the unusual house in Littleton NH built in 1840 that was listed last spring here. Lots to be done but some spectacular features.

  41. Robb H says: 186 comments

    I tried to make an appointment to have a private showing of this property but was turned down by the listing Realtor. My Realtor had certain words about him 🙂 They will only let people in at 5:00 on Saturday. This house has had too much publicity. It was just featured on AOL tonight. I would not be surprised to see it on some national news.

    • Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12797 comments

      1901 Folk Victorian
      Chestatee, GA

      Weird. Did he give a reason or other than a tour on Saturday and no private showings to anyone? Hope the publicity gets it someone that can afford to move it elsewhere. Not many homes I’d say would be a tragedy if demolished but this is one.

      • Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12797 comments

        1901 Folk Victorian
        Chestatee, GA

        I see, so not the agent but the church is disallowing showings before Saturday. I guess there’s a reason. Sounds like time is of the essence but maybe after Saturday private viewings would be allowed (I’m guessing not stating fact.)

  42. MW says: 947 comments

    I have a feeling the whole selling the house to be moved is just a thinly veiled attempt just so they can say they tried.

    First off, if they really honestly want it moved, they would help by just offering it for free and maybe even helping with some cost, at least less than what they will need to spend to have it demo-ed and hauled away anyway. That is what they did for the Oakland house I posted above and that got the house moved. These people aren’t really serious. They just want people off their backs and the house down and gone asap. Seems pretty clear.

    They’ve probably already made a deal with a demo-salvage guy to come in and get rid of it for cheap or free in exchange for salvage rights and they probably agreed on a short deadline to have it moved or then demo-ed if that miracle didn’t pan out. In this case, I seriously doubt they are praying for a miracle. To busy dreaming of that beautiful new parking lot.

  43. Sarah says: 1 comments

    They are absolutely insane if they tear this house down! Oh my heart hurts 🙁

  44. Robb H says: 186 comments

    I was at the house today and did snap a few pictures. The house is in rough shape on the exterior and I suspect the roof will need repair. Much of the exterior wood is rotting or rotted. I am actually unsure if this house can be moved as it appears the house is much wider than the streets. I wish them all well but there is a point when they must get real.

  45. Eileen M says: 284 comments

    This house is, absolutely, a work of art. Losing it to salvage or demolition would be unthinkable. Wish I had the $$$ to buy it.

  46. says: 2 comments

    What a beautiful home!!…It kills me knowing there is a possibility of it being demolished…homes like this are rare they should be treasured not salvaged & torn down…please keep us informed on what happens

  47. DrJude says: 2 comments

    If they demo the home, I wonder if the demo guy would sell off some of the home….Windows, etc.

    • Paul W says: 464 comments

      Oh I am sure if it goes that way every major salvage dealer will be bidding to buy the salvage rights before demo. I would expect we would see the entry doors and sidelights for 12-15K and the staircase landing windows and paneling should bring another 26-30K The house has easily 250-300K worth of salvage in it which is why I don’t for one minute believe the church will sell it for 29K to be moved. This is more exercise in “looking like you care”. If some one actually offers full price, I bet ether will be some ‘unforeseen glitch” to prevent the sale/ Noway the church is going to turn down what they can get for salvage. I have seen this played out too many times unfortunately.

  48. RustyNH says: 11 comments

    By way of update, I attended the open house. It was Sat 5:15-6:30 and everyone had to be there “punctually at 5:15.” About 25 people were there, several I think from the neighborhood wanting to look for old time’s sake. We were led around in groups of about 10 and then could speak with the listing agent after. We were told that the church can’t afford to bring the building up to code for use as it would be too expensive (probably true), and that there had been numerous conversations between the church and town about potential uses (also probably true). My guide said it was a “simple two story farmhouse” before the Bishop moved in and fancified it. I don’t think the history and old photos support that story. Certainly he added the chapel and added rooms upstairs. I think the core of the structure – the entry, parlors, receiving room, grand stairway and numerous first floor mantels is original and phenomenal and needs to be preserved. The outside porches and the spartan upstairs dorm-like bedrooms and bathrooms are not original and are expendable. There is a library room upstairs with beautiful woodwork. The kitchen area is nothing special. Except for the nice chimney on the back of the house, much of the back addition looks expendable. Still the original house is wider than the streets and would have to be disassembled to move. The realtor said that “if a suitable party came forward there is no timeline for demolitioning the house” despite a published deadline of 11/30. There is certainly a whole lot there to be salvaged and sold off. I agree with Paul that it would amount a hundred thousand dollars or more of salvage material. The millwork, mantels, stained glass, doors, hardware and some floors are splendid. They need to build their parking lot elsewhere and focus on finding someone with deep enough pockets to restore the place where it is. Otherwise it appears doomed to salvage, or someone will peel off the bad stuff and move the good core away.

  49. Mark says: 16 comments

    I’m with you Paul, I feel sure there is some political maneuvering going on behind the scenes, maybe to rally the people to save the home or some such. I too have seen similar played out to the sympathy of the people. Whatever the reason I do hope the home is saved in tact.

  50. Paula says: 92 comments

    It’s like a crime is getting ready to happened, sad

    • RossRoss says: 2457 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
      Emporia, KS

      PLEASE, can all the speculation stop???????????????

      Maybe, maybe, the church is not serious about about letting the house be moved. But none of us know this as fact.

      And all the comments about parting the house out make my skin crawl.

      This is a REMARKABLE structure, and well deserving of a first-class restoration. Perhaps the church, after so much attention about the house, might change their mind? Perhaps a wealthy parishioner might come forward and fund code updates? Perhaps the church might realize that they already have enough land for parking?

      Perhaps somebody or some group will come forward with the resources to move/restore the building?

      In short, until the patient is dead, can all the funeral arrangements be curtailed?

  51. Cassandra says: 12 comments

    …. I think I just died…. This home is the type that absolutely renders me speechless. I hope the best for her.

  52. RustyNH says: 11 comments

    They have expressed a preference that it stay locally but had probably exhausted local options before listing it. It is wider than any of the streets that surround it – I believe it would have to be divided to move it.

  53. Gemma says: 114 comments

    The scheduling may have something to do with chain-of-command. Technically, the house is diocesan property, and they may have a liaison person who can be there only at a specific time. I am making an educated guess.

    Wolfe Movers could provide some answers to the moving question. One of my novels-in-progress ends with a convent being moved due to a rockslide. They are perched on a palisade of the Schuylkill River in PA.

  54. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12797 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Update: link

    They’ve lifted the Nov. 30 deadline. Says two people were looking into moving the home, any one here one of those people?

  55. says: 102 comments

    Is this really not a Barber? GORGEOUS woodwork! And speaking of which, the chapel is just beautiful! I sincerely hope there’s a good sized pipe organ included; could make those wonderful walls just vibrate with the music! Ross, I read every one of your comments, and didn’t see a one (unless I missed it) about the stained glass! All I thought of while looking at the pictures, was how Ross would be going on about that stained glass. How PRETTY it is! I agree with the comment about building a new church with a parking lot somewhere else, and letting this beautiful baby BE! I don’t believe there are 30 rooms in that house though! It does deserve a great yard to go with it though.

    I still get sick thinking of the gorgeous houses on Bailey Circle in Greenwood I used to see in the 60s, getting razed to put in the big parking lot for the church there. A lady in one of those houses used to do sewing for my grandmother, and we used to go over there. Now it’s a parking lot. Just sad and senseless and criminal!

  56. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12797 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Showing off market. Does anyone know anything new?

  57. Jalopiejoe says: 2 comments

    If you look at this property on Google Earth you can see that the church has no parking.
    But, there is plenty of lawn area that could be paved and with a little landscaping that grand house should stay!

  58. Paul Tyler says: 41 comments

    Any updates on this property?

  59. Trisha says: 1 comments

    I know the cost of moving this house will be close to $250,000 but it is worth it, if you can find the right location. You can NEVER replicate the work in this house for the money you would have to put out to move it. I just pray that whoever does buy the house loves it and leaves it intact, instead of buying it and selling it off in parts…the wood, the windows, etc. I wish that lottery ticket thing would come through now. This is the B&B I’ve been looking for.

  60. JimHJimH says: 5764 comments
    OHD Supporter

    Interesting radio chat with an expert on the house, who says it was built in 1863 and the front added later:

    It’s long past the deadline and the house still stands.

  61. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12797 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Looked online for an update, didn’t find anything. Anyone know what is going on?

  62. Maxwell Corbett says: 1 comments

    Just drove by the other day and it’s still standing and there’s no sign of construction of demolition

    • RossRoss says: 2457 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
      Emporia, KS

      In the 1950s and 1960s, it was normal for fine historic homes to be bulldozed with nary a thought.

      Today, it seems breathtaking, and profoundly idiotic, that this fine home, rich with beauty and craftsmanship, would be pushed to the ground.

      And for what? A friggin’ parking lot?

      I feel sick.

  63. RustyNHRustyNH says: 11 comments

    I live in NH and viewed this house when they were offering to sell it and have it moved. The upper floors were made into a dorm-like setting but the main portions of the house are nothing short of spectacular. The idea of demolishing this for a parking lot for a withering/aging church congregation is non-sensical. There has to be something more to this story. It is a real shame. At minimum I hope they allow a reputable salvage company to “save” what can be saved.

  64. John ShifletJohn Shiflet says: 5916 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1897 Queen Anne Colonial
    Cadiz, OH

    So, the tax assessment for 2015 was $639,900. New Hampshire, like many New England states, has fairly high tax rates and many Catholic dioceses nationwide have been under pressure in recent years to pare down overhead expenses.

    I’ve followed the unique relationships between Church owned properties (of all denominations) vs. preservation of historical structures for several decades and regret to say that with few exceptions, historic homes and buildings have very little intrinsic value to the Church owners. Typically, by the time word is out about the disposal of the church owned property, local preservationists have very little time to come up with alternatives to demolition. At least this house had a small chance for survival but its reprieve from oblivion appears to be over.

    A few years ago, (2013) the Diocese of Covington, KY, decided to sell and allow demolition of what was locally known as the Bishop’s mansion. The Bishop’s mansion was arguably on par with the Chandler mansion and was significantly larger. The sale was for putting a new Walgreens drug store on the site despite there being another Walgreens located less than a mile away. Local preservationists tried to intervene but by that time it was already a done deal.

    Closer to my home (Fort Worth) the last private (absentee) owner of a home that was located between two major downtown streets (now a combo gas station and fast food joint) in her will deeded the rare 1870’s-1880’s home (with circular stained glass windows and Eastlake decorative details to a prominent national evangelical association. From day one, the association had no desire to maintain the property and simply wished to dispose of the property and cash out. Despite the intact period home’s rarity (Victorian era homes are few and far between in Cowtown) it was sold to a commercial developer; a local salvage company did save some of the more architecturally important elements. The house could have and should have been moved as there are vacant residential lots nearby but that solution was never even considered. The moral of this story is that someone who owns a historic home or building (eligible for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places) should think twice before considering a donation of their property to a religious organization. Better to sell the property outright and then donate the proceeds to their chosen recipient than to expect the home or building to be maintained by the religious organization.

    Another continuing threat to historic properties comes from educational institution owned properties. The institution may even have a historic preservation studies program yet will still have no qualms about demolishing significant historic structures unfortunate enough to be on their properties. William & Jefferson College in Washington, Pennsylvania, can trace its origins to the 1780’s when this area was considered the western frontier. I mention this enlightened institution specifically because they have immaculately restored and adaptively reused several important Victorian era homes located on their campus. Here’s a collection of photos I took while visiting the campus that include several of the restored historic homes on the campus: https://www.flickr.com/photos/11236515@N05/albums/72157618437859030 Washington & Jefferson College regrettably is an exception.

    In summary, its heartbreaking to see this exquisite former mansion ripped apart and destroyed forever. The very high quality of its interior puts it in the less than 1% range of historic homes from this era. Salvage dealers will aggressively seek salvage rights because as others have noted, a tidy profit from selling the parts awaits the house wreckers. I could go on, but I can summarize my feelings about the fate of this once grand home in a single word: SAD.

  65. Scott CunninghamScott Cunningham says: 397 comments
    1856 Tudor (fmr Victorian)
    Leavenworth , KS

    Many of these well intentioned donations are nothing but folly. A well meaning owner sees value in their structure and wants to gift it to a “worthy” charity who they assume will also value it the same way.

    The harsh reality is these gifts are little but an encumbrance on the charities. They are not an “asset” They add little value but always detract time and cash and other resources to maintain. They are usually razed or heartlessly disposes of at the first opportunity.

    Even if the historic home is accepted with promises and best intentions, all it takes is one person in charge at some point in the future who doesn’t see value in the home, and it’s gone in a flash.

    Anyone considering donating a historic house to a charity, government, non profit, or other entity would probably be better off hiring a bulldozer and then offering the charity the pile of rubble and the plot of land. Better to sell to a buyer who will treasure the home, and turn over any proceeds to whatever group is being supported.

  66. John ShifletJohn Shiflet says: 5916 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1897 Queen Anne Colonial
    Cadiz, OH

    Good news indeed! The mansion was one of the best preserved Gilded Age palaces I can ever recall. I rescind all of the negative thoughts I had against what seemed like a very short sighted Diocese and praise the wisdom they demonstrated in preserving this wonderful example of 19th century architecture. For the future, this community landmark will reflect positively on the Diocese itself because of the close association the home had with the Church’s leaders in the past. This good news really made my day-many thanks!

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