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!

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Who You Know

It’s all about who you know. In our case, we lucked out. We know Kenny, and Kenny seems to know everyone we’ve been looking for. This week Burt, Kenny’s cousin, is on vacation in Texas. Instead of working on the Queen solo this week, Kenny had an ingenious idea. He asked if he could have a guy he knows come up and finish our sheet rock for the same pay as Burt. This way we get “extra,” specialized help without having to come up with a second pay check. Brilliant! I know this logic is a bit flawed, i.e. I’m getting less carpentry, but let me cling to my delusions. Here's is the master bath:

Since our original tile guy flaked out on us, Kenny had a guy named Jake come out and take a look at the Devil Queen. He said that he could have all our tile work finished in a week and he could start now. I called him Tuesday morning and told him to start on it whenever he could. He was at the Devil Queen about 45 minutes later. So far I’m really pleased with his work.

Since our moving travesty is behind us now, I can once again focus solely on the Queen. I didn’t finish much, but I did manage to finish priming the master bedroom ceiling. Tomorrow night (?) it’ll be time to caulk the bastard, and then we start in on the final coat of paint this weekend.

While Kenny is an extremely nice guy, his motives aren’t entirely altruistic (which is fine by me). He’s getting ready to wrap up work on the Queen in June (I know he has two jobs lined up after the Queen), and the tile & dry wall were going to become bottle necks to his progress before too much longer.

Here are a couple of pictures of the main hall's wainscotting. The new bead board isn't as thick as the original stuff. Kenny and Burt have had to shim it out to match the thickness. They have some 1/4 inch "bead board" plywood left from the master bathroom, and it is the perfect thickness for the shims. Here are some of the plywood spacers:

And, here is the new wainscotting:


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