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, April 28, 2009

Do It For A Dollar?

Well, here it is for all interested parties. In my personal opinion if you just want an old house find one you don't have to move. If it's the family's homestead or a one of a kind gem, maybe. I wouldn't recommend it though. Click to enlarge the story, it's mostly legible then.

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Blogger saaraah said...

i've just spent the last few days reading thru *all* of your archives. yah, i know, i'm nuts. blame it on the OCD. ;)

anyway, i just wanted to say that you and your family are amazing, and i was so relieved to find someone who has had a not so smooth renovation process. sometimes i feel embarassed that we're still fixing up our 100 year old house after 5 years, but it's good to know that there are others out there that don't get everything done in 6 months like hgtv has told me... doing everything yourself takes a hell of a long time especially when desire to do work wanes after the first year.

so many times i've laughed at the similarities in your feelings about old house reno. sometimes it's great especially when you look around and feel proud of what you accomplished, but more often than not, the reno is full of stress, tears, and grumpiness. :)

oh, i completely understand 10 minute jobs that take over 1+ years to do.

anyway, i want to wish you well with your next adventure. i thoroughly enjoyed reading your posts. take care!

btw, do you ship your paintings to ontario, canada?

7:23 PM  
Blogger John said...

Hello Sarah,

Well, I'm flattered. That is a lot of reading, and I'm glad that you've enjoyed. Thanks!

I wouldn't feel embarassed about the time line. Case Decrepit's projected timeline for their house is 20 years. The Petch House, This Old Crack House, and many others are still in the works after just as long. You are in good company.

As for the paintings, I do ship to Canada. If there is something you'd like, let me know.

Thanks again!


8:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I bought a house that had been moved already (in 1958) and it was much cheaper to do it way back when, I'm sure. Our surprise came when we started pulling down the paneling only to find plaster walls barely hanging on and under a dropped ceiling hiding bare lathe. Turns out an axle broke during the move and the house sat in the middle of the street for a week. This ruined the plaster. Because of the massive plaster damage, we had to tear out walls, because walls were torn out, we had to update electricity, this also meant plumbing needed to be upgraded. In the end, our 50K house had another 36K added on top. We lived in a house with basically nothing but lathe walls for about 2.5 years and then I bit the bullet, hired a contractor, and got everything done at once. If I had done it piecemeal, it wouldn't have been finished before my daughter graduated HS (and that is a ways off). Was it worth it? Hell yes. BUT, if I had really paid any attention, like wondering why the walls were paneled, etc., I may not have bought it.

I've read your blog from the beginning. Definitely one of the most interesting and entertaining of

My heart always went out to you guys with the car problems, house problems,etc. I hope your house sells soon so that you can move on.

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