The Devil Queen

How my wife and I sold our souls to the Queen Anne Victorian we tried to save.

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Location: Crow Mountain, Arkansas, United States

Synopsis: This is a cautionary tale. A seriously disturbed couple find the charming, old ruin of a Queen Anne Victorian in Russellville, Arkansas, and buy it for $1.00. They tore the roof off, cut it in half, and had it moved to some land they owned sixteen miles away because they didn't know any better. Since then, they have hired and fired contractors, had all of their tools stolen, re-wired, re-plumbed, insulated, and essentially rebuilt the entire house. Their only problem is that after four years it still isn't finished. Now they are tired, broke, and wonder what in the hell it is they've done to themselves. And, it's haunted.
(Last updated on April 3, 2008)

Press: Russellville Courier Article - December 2003, HGTV website article, AP story - October 2006, and Victorian Homes Magazine - February 2008 (link coming soon).
Art: From time to time, I receive requests for my art. If you would like to look at more of my art, go to The Failed Artist. If you would like to buy my art, email me. I am more than happy to answer any questions you might have. Thanks!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Burning Down the House

As you may remember from previous posts, we’ve considered replacing the fireplace with a wood burning stove. This plan has hit a snag.

Since we were wild and crazy, we’d install the stove in accordance to building code. This has the great advantage of keeping the house from bursting into flames the first time we fire the stove up. However, this would require us to gap so much room behind the stove that it would jut out into the middle of the living room. Besides the fact that this wouldn’t be functional, it would also have the stove exiting the roof through a ridge. To solve this problem, we’d have to either A) tear a hole in the roof, brace the ridge, and build a “box” to run the chimney through, or B) put a bend or series of bends in the stove pipe. My wife and I don’t like either option.

We’re thinking that we’re not going to have a stove or fireplace in the living room at this point. This is a real bummer for me. I am a lifelong, unrepentant firebug. I like fireplaces and woodstoves for the aesthetics and ambiance as much as the warmth. Oh well, poor me. On the upside, not having either is a lot cheaper, I hope.

So, now the question is what do we do with the old fireplace spot? While leaving it just as it is would be a great conversational piece, we’re looking for a more finished look. So far our top three ideas are:

1) Our own secret Bat Cave. Sure, it would be small, but secret rooms are cool.

2) A secret prison cell. Really, this is just a variation of number one. It would be a great disciplinary tool for children or unwanted family members visiting for the holidays (Be nice or you’ll have to spend Christmas in THE ROOM).

3) A built-in entertainment center.

So, what do you think? Suggestions? I know that a photo might help, but I don’t have any at the moment. The space is about 4’x 2’ and you can go all the way up to the ceiling (12’).


Blogger Gary said...

There are such things as zero clearance stoves or with the correct wall protection you can set your stove as close as 12 inches from a combustable wall. All our stoves are against brick walls so we don't have to worry about clearance distances but I do have to make sure there is no molding within 3 feet! You could build a masonary enclosure to put a stove on. I just returned 3 books to the library on this subject.

12:39 PM  
Blogger Denny said...

I agree with Gary - find a stove that will work. Or if push comes to shove do the entertainment center thing. Now, "The Room" is a good idea too but people might stop visiting - of course that could be a good thing too. Denny

5:24 AM  

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