The Cross House was built in 1894. It is located at 526 Union Street, in Emporia, Kansas. I purchased the house in March 2014.

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My blog posts about the restoration are below.


The Cross House, Emporia, designed by architect Charles M. Squires.

The Cross House, Emporia, designed by architect Charles W. Squires.

Currently displaying blog entries in Chronological Order. Switch to Most Recent.

Currently displaying blog entries in Most Recent Order. Switch to Chronological Order.

Bathroom Ponderings

In pondering the bathroom, I have been curious. Did the room originally have a picture rail? Most of the rooms in the house did, about 20-inches below the ceiling. This was common for the era. All the rails were removed, it seems, in 1950. But, their ghost outlines remain. The kitchen did not have picture…

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Channelling Nancy Reagan

In my previous post, Brian asked two questions: “Did the second floor stair hall have a picture rail? If so, how was the arch in the middle of that hallway treated?” To answer the first question: Yes. The two-story stair hall had papered walls, a paper border (above the picture rail), and papered ceilings. Fragments of…

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IT’S OFFICIAL: The Carriage House RESUMES!

NOTE: The carriage house is a tale of two houses. It was built in 1894. The main structure was a carriage house with, likely, a hayloft above. The north wing was the barn. Circa-1921, the whole was converted into a house, and the north wing was relocated to the east and became a kitchen. All…

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Raising the Carriage House

    John wrote in with the correct answer: “I have seen ‘peaked’ joists under historic poured concrete and ceramic tiled floors–the upper surfaces of the joists were not just beveled, they came to ridges. I’ve read this treatment was to minimize cracking. I’ve also seen T&G boards nailed between those joists to create a…

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Three Scary Plans

After buying the Cross House in 2014, I quickly identified three related issues which were a problem. However, I have ignored these issues ever since due to the assumed terrifying costs associated with resolving said issues. But…time now presses upon me. Sigh.   ISSUE ONE The carriage house has, quite sensibly, a 2-zone HVAC system….

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Sinking Visitors!

For the first time in over a year (due to Covid), the Cross House received visitors! Bill discovered the Cross House blog about four years ago, and read every post during a three-week marathon. He then put the house on his bucket list, and planned to visit in 2020. Well, y’all know how 2020 went!…

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Getting Leveled

        Last week, it was uncertain if the floor sag could be eradicated or even improved. Today though…drum roll, please…it now seems obvious that the sag can be fully eradicated. We were able to reduce the sag by about an inch today! After the house settles a bit, we will jack up…

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Wanna Meet The Secret Room?

                Tomorrow, Cody arrives for a two week stay. He plans to jam the room full with some of his stuff.    

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A Discovery!

              At some point the carriage house was converted into three apartments: Studio in basement. First floor. Second floor. I am gonna guess that this alteration was done at such a point.     In addition, being able to close off the second floor will make a significant difference…

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Justin, Scott, and their assistant, Brock, were in the carriage house. An ear-piercing noise was heard and, as Justin later told me: “I was suddenly weightless! It was terrifying.” What happened? A Lally column in the basement had buckled and all the jacking up this past week, in an instant, fell back down to ‘normal’….

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Trying To Reveal The Past

While the Cross House has remained…relatively speaking…largely intact during its 127-year-life, the adjacent carriage house has been through a lot. A lot. I knew none of this when I purchased the property in 2014. Indeed, I did not even know that the carriage house WAS the carriage house to the Cross House. The ensuing years…

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