The Cross House
Scott Mouse, Sr., purchased the Cross House in 1929, and converted the second-floor into apartments.
His son, Scott, Jr., converted the house into the Palace Motel in 1950.
These conversions almost certainly saved the house from being demolished as the once prime residential neighborhood had gone commercial.
Today, little remains of the Mouse conversions. After Bob Rodak purchased the house in 1999, he removed most of the motel bathrooms. Only one motel bathroom remains (in the basement). I removed the motel staircase to the basement, and have recreated the original expansive main staircase (which had been been reduced in size by Scott, Sr.).
There are, however…
The Mouse family sold the Cross House in 1960, and the Toms family became the new owners (for just over three decades). The sign was extant when a fraternity occupied the house in the mid-1960s.
Then, it seems to have vanished. And I have ached for it to turn up somewhere.
After several years of inquiry, I learned that the sign had, at some point, ended up behind a barn owned by the Mouse family. And the sign remained there for many decades. Then, all the stuff behind the barn was…thrown away maybe twenty years ago.
At least this is what was told to me via some old memories. And at this point I gave up my search for the sign.
Time passed. Then one day I woke to a startling thought: What about recreating the sign, and hanging on the big wall in the dining room? When one stepped into the house, one would look in a straight line through the foyer, through the stairhall, through the dining room, and right at the PALACE MOTEL sign glowing on the big wall.
How cool would that be? Way cool, I think.
Because I am quite insane, I have tried to see if a crazy idea could be transformed into reality.
The sign would be 51-inches high with red neon letters (on a dimmer).
I am tremendously excited by this.
But…the cost. The cost. There is NO WAY to justify this. The sign is 100% not required. There is no compelling reason to pursue this, particularly while I still don’t have a full bathroom in the house or a finished kitchen.
But…but..the idea, as stated, is way cool.
I assumed the cost would be like $12,000 and this would, absolutely, stop the insanity.
Today though, Shannon sent me a quote.
Oh. That is…sorta kinda possibly imaginable. Note that I did not state doable. Just imaginable.
And this puts me in a pickle.
A Mouse pickle.