Historic New Carlisle, Inc.
Preserving the Past for Our Future...
Mary mentioned the unique and beautiful craftsmanship on the stairway, the balcony that faced the east, and the original porches, intact at that time, which have never been rebuilt. She remembered that there was a privy down the lane, a large barn to the east of the house and a smaller barn that is considered an area landmark.
When the Clendenens purchased an 11-acre farm on the highway, they sold the house and land to Richard and Virginia Brewer in 1966. The Brewers rented the home and farmed the surrounding land. The farmland was sold to Randy Sczcpiorski in 2002.
Oscar and Dorothy Kennedy became the next owners of the home in 1972, followed by Roger and Roma Pecina who remodeled the home extensively between 1981-1987. Dr. Richard Foster owned the home for about the next two years and Gayle Argencio bought the house around 1989, living there for 14 years.
Current owners Jack and Elaine Williams moved to New Carlisle from Lakeside, Michigan (north of New Buffalo) in 2003. The home includes 2.58 acres of surrounding land.
The Williams’ experience with their former 1853 home in Michigan taught them much. As a result both are quite handy. Jack comes from a family of ten so resources for assistance are great. Cousin David Umphrey’s woodworking expertise has been invaluable. Fourteen windows have been rebuilt with the original sashes and new thermo glass-only 27 more to go.
In order to get insurance when they moved in, the Williams’ immediate chore was to repair the roofs on the milk house and the smoke house, the small outbuildings next to the house. What was once a summer kitchen- and will now be used as a library-also needed roof repair. In addition to the library, the house downstairs has a kitchen, breakfast room,laundry room, dining room, foyer, living room, music room, front parlor/TV room and bath. Upstairs is a 13 by 19 foot landing the size of the foyer below, five bedrooms, a full bath, front and back halls, and front and back stairways. Oh, yes, the three-seater privy is still attached to the house.
The Williams have raised four children. Daughter Donna Sukich and her three girls live with them- 14-year old twins Gabrielle and Jaclyn, and 8-year old Julia. Their other three kids live away with their own families- David is in Omaha, Connie Bragg in Tennessee, and Paul in Michigan.
Biographical Memoirs, and from the survey records of St. Joseph County Historic Preservation Commission. Thanks to Kimber Vaundry for lending historic material and to Richard and Virginia Brewer for sharing their knowledge of home ownership over the years. Also thanks to Mary Carr Clendenen and Mary Margaret Jones Marker for their time and assistance with their family history. Both of their families are related to the pioneer Reynolds family. Lastly, thanks to Elaine Williams for bringing us up to 2005 on one of the community’s important landmarks.
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