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!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Do You Love Her?

Here is one our most exciting discoveries at the Devil Queen, 117 year old graffiti. It is scrawled on the wall just to the right of the bay window. We taped a trash bag and a dire curse over it to keep anyone from accidently painting this little bit of history.
I had a hard time taking a good picture of it, but here it is.

The pencil is so faint that I couldn't see it through the camera's view finder. I tried to zero in on some nearby nail heads, but I was a little off. This says, "Dan, Do you love her?" and beneath it says "Yes" with a heart drawn around it. We are a baffled about Dan. To the best of our knowledge, no one named Dan lived here, ever. The most popular theory is that Van Boswell (full name, Ransom "Van" Newton Vandorn Boswell, Jr.), the Devil Queen's builder, was nicknamed Dan, perhaps? It's the only thing we can think of for the moment.

Next to it in the same handwriting is this.

Terrible pictures, I know.

This says "Van Boswell/ painted by / [undecipherable name?]" At first I thought maybe it said Daniela, but now I'm wondering if it says Amelia. That would make more sense on two counts. One, that is the name of his first wife who lived in the Devil Queen from the time it was built until her death 6 years later. And, we know his wife was an artist and sign painter based on The History of Pope County, Vol. 1.

This is pretty exciting stuff for us. We're going to paint around the writing on the wall and have picture frame with glass mounted over it. A window to the past as it were.



Anonymous Julia said...

What a cool way to preserve some of the past!

We just today got our abstract and title for our house we bought in January. We're going to have fun looking through it. Already found out that the fellow that built our house was from Hungary.

9:59 AM  
Blogger Felicia said...

I would absolutely keep them...that's really neat.
Figure out who they are and you can be on "If Walls Could Talk"
(my kids want to look for "history" in our house, but heck, it's a 1975, we ain't finding anything interesting here!)

11:30 AM  
Blogger Bones said...

That is WAY cool -- props to you for saving it, and then decidig to frame it. Excellent

1:59 PM  
Blogger Tarr said...

Your house is looking so good!

So if I write some graffiti on the TinyCabin, it'll take over a hundred years before it is cool?

Some asshole scribed a big marijuana leaf and "Motley Crue" inside my cave. That must have been in the 70s. Still uncool.

5:31 PM  
Blogger John said...

Thanks all.

Felicia, how much do we need to know about them? We have some good info on the Boswells: names, dates, family trees, etc.

Tarr, I don't know if 100 years is the gold standard for cool, but I think we'd have to be dead for our graffiti to be cool.

10:11 AM  
Anonymous Angus said...

Well, perhaps Dan is ... Daniela. Evidence of unmentionable love (well, back then) is what you have there on your wall, my lad.

7:36 AM  
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