1868 Italianate – Franklin, IN

Added to OHD on 9/5/18   -   Last OHD Update: 11/7/20   -   17 Comments
SOLD / Archived Post
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165 W State Road 144 Franklin, IN 46131

Maps: Street | Aerial

  • $299,000
  • 5 Bed
  • 1.5 Bath
  • 4372 Sq Ft
  • 4.53 Ac.
Amazing One of a Kind Historic Home near Hopewell in Franklin. This Italianate Brick 2 Story Home sits on nearly 5 wooded acres. Keystone second-story windows flush with the floor are topped with dip arches. Elongated first-floor window have bell arches. A wide fanlight window cant the elevated front entrance. This ten room house has undergone may improvements that give it a unique structural appearance. Native building materials were oak and poplar woods and bricks were made locally. Large 3 car garage/outbuilding has full attic storage above. 2 other barns/outbuildings. High Ceilings, Ornate beautiful original hardwood floors and trim throughout. Large 2 story foyer greets you with winding stairs. Ready for finishing touches!
Contact Information
Tanya Smythe, Smythe & Co.
(317) 882-7229
Links, Photos & Additional Info

State: | Region: | Associated Styles or Type:
Period & Associated Styles: , | Misc:

17 Comments on 1868 Italianate – Franklin, IN

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  1. Karen I says: 171 comments

    Oh! Thank you for featuring Indiana. We will be in the area of this house in October. Maybe we’ll check it out. But it’s out of our price range. Although worth the price, what with the outbuildings and acreage.

  2. BethanyBethany says: 3450 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1983 White elephant
    Escondido, CA

    A bit of an identity crisis inside, but overall so great!

  3. Zann says: 519 comments

    Oh, man. I love the atmosphere of this one. Wow.

  4. JimHJimH says: 5271 comments
    OHD Supporter

    The state preservation file says there is a date inscription of 1868 over the front door. The photos from 1985 show the house in poor condition at that time. The limestone foundation, lintels and hoods are noted. The stair and interior trim appear nicely preserved.
    The original owner was Cornelius Lowe Ditmars (1825-1922), a descendant of Manhattan settlers prior to 1642. Ditmars came to the county from New Jersey, married in 1850 and settled on this farm. He outlived two of his 3 wives, and three of his 5 children, still the owner when he died at age 96.

    The Johnson County Atlas of 1881 has a wonderful lithograph of the Ditmars house and farm, showing large barns and a porch with upper level on the right side, since lost:

    • John says: 72 comments

      Possibly of the same family for which Ditmars Blvd, by LaGuardia, is named?

      • JimHJimH says: 5271 comments
        OHD Supporter

        Yes, the same. The Scandinavian immigrant was known as Platneus, or Flat-nose in Dutch. Later they took the name of their place of origin, Dithmarschen, north of Hamburg.

    • julie A.julie A. says: 146 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1914 foursquare farmhouse
      New Germany, MN

      Thanks for that amazing lithograph! It’s too bad that outbuildings are lost. At least you could frame a litho of what was….

  5. Mary Dunton says: 2 comments

    I absolutely adore this house. One of my favorites! That stairway!

  6. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 12146 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Thanks JimH!

  7. Cory says: 15 comments

    We take this road all the time coming/going between Louisville and home in Illinois. We actually just drove it last weekend! LOVE all the cool old homes on this road.

  8. Gregory_KGregory_K says: 455 comments
    OHD Supporter

    Chatsworth, CA

    Hello folks. The stairs are actually in surprisingly poor condition. The original newel post is missing, as are many of the balusters on the bottom steps. Those bulky brick fireplaces replace original mantels. Perhaps the mantels were stolen, or simply rebuilt.
    In addition, something strange has happened in the room adjacent to the kitchen. The original builder would never have placed a fireplace or stove thimble in a doorway. The doors themselves do not match, and the kitchen projects into the room.
    In my opinion, this room has been reduced in size to accommodate a larger kitchen. Perhaps there was a basement kitchen, and only a serving pantry on the main floor. It’s too bad there are no basement photographs, or photographs to show if the house has a real English basement, or whether it’s simply a tall foundation.
    In spite of these losses and oddities, it is a handsome house well worth restoring.

    • JimHJimH says: 5271 comments
      OHD Supporter

      Good eye. Apparently the house was vacant for years, and some nice details were lost. Some folks see old vacant houses as “abandoned”, and take what they like.

      • DianeEGDianeEG says: 561 comments
        OHD Supporter

        1896 Farmhouse W/Swedish roots
        Rural, IL

        I had inherited some property in another state from my father. It had a few acres of virgin woods with rare wildflowers and old trees/rocks. The land was fenced and posted. One day on a visit back there I decided to walk it, looking for mushrooms, and found someone had built a go-cart race track through it, including cutting down some trees. When I found the person, he said, “I didn’t think anyone owned it.” I had to explain there was no longer land in the USA where there was “no owner” and the consequences of trespassing and criminal damage to property. Fine line between stupidity and deliberate theft but the outcome is the same for the property owner.

  9. Amy P. says: 225 comments

    I’d gut that bathroom and get to restoring!!! She is still spectacular to me!

  10. nic says: 79 comments

    I am quite late catching up with my OHD posts. I grew up in the area of this house and know the Ditmars family well. This house was abandoned from about 1978 until late 1990s I think and was a rental all during the 60s and 70s. The barns fell down on their own during that time. If you go to the aerial map Kelly linked, you can move diagonally across that 4 way intersection, and the equally large white farmhouse with the circle drive is where the Ditmars descendants still live today.


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