This page is about Emporia-related restorations. Or Emporia-related real-estate needing restoration. Or Emporia-related real-estate that I just like. Or just cool stuff in Emporia.

Emporia, Kansas, is a city of 25,000 people, and right in the middle of America.

I have always liked the name Emporia. It has a nice 19th-century flavor.

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

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

Plumb Place. A CLARIFICATION

The Emporia Gazette recently did an article about the new owner of Plumb Place. To my surprise, I was quoted, even though I gave no interview for the article. The article stated this: “MacTaggart hoped someone else would win the bidding for the mansion.” This stunned me. For, I have never written as such. In…

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Plumb Place: A Final Update

This is my 13th, and final, post trying to save Plumb Place.   A final round of five bids were accepted for consideration by a judge. All were above ask, a significant improvement from the low-ball offer previously accepted. I had spoken with one of the these final-round bidders. He impressed me with his knowledge…

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Plumb Place: An Update

This is my 12th post trying to save Plumb Place.   Today, I attended a meeting of the city council where the zoning appeal of Plumb Place was considered. Eli Fowler made an offer on the property in December, an offer contingent on getting a zoning change. His offer was accepted. In March, the zoning…

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Plumb Place: An Insurance Scam?

This is my 11th post trying to save Plumb Place.   I keep hearing that the roof of Plumb Place was heavily damaged in a hail storm and requires a huge amount of $$$ repairs. The first I heard of this was when a bid was offered in December, and by you-know-who. He later reduced…

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Plumb Place: A Positive Update?

This is my tenth post trying to save Plumb Place   About a week ago something significant happened. The listing agent for Plumb Place suddenly became response. She stopped telling people offers were not being considered. She began returning calls. She even showed the property! Gadzooks! And by all accounts the receiver, Kevin Flott, has…

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Plumb Place: The Bullshit STILL Continues.

This is my eighth post trying to save Plumb Place.   This past Friday, Michael wrote me: Today the realtor replied to me that, because one person has been trying to buy this for several months, “the seller feels somewhat loyal to them”.  I was in utter disbelief.  Seller feels loyal to one offer?!?!  If…

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Plumb Place: Beware of Experts

This is my seventh post on the Plumb mansion. This last week has been dizzying for many reasons but one thing struck me: how many people  are “experts” in what the house needs. Here’s one comment: “The roof require[s] total replacement at a horrendous cost.” Here’s the roof:        

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Plumb Place: STOP THE STEAL!

This is my sixth post trying to stop the historic Plumb Mansion from being stolen in plain sight. The property has no owner at the moment. It is in limbo. It does though have a receiver, who is the de facto owner. Today, he confirmed that the information being given out by the listing agent,…

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Plumb Place: STEALING A HOUSE IN PLAIN SIGHT?

This is my fifth post on the Plumb Mansion. In a previous post, this was the headline:   Plumb Place: Why Is This House Being Hidden?   It now appears that the situation is much much worse than I could have imagined. For, it now seems that the Plumb mansion is being stolen in plain…

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Plumb Place. THE BULLSHIT CONTINUES

FFS. This is my fourth post about the fabulous Plumb Place. I keep having to do posts due to the scandalous nature of how the sale of the Plumb Mansion has been handled. I detailed this previously. Last Friday, the mansion was finally listed on multiple listing service (MLS), which is the absolute standard for…

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Plumb Place: A Historical and Architectural Tour

  The Plumb mansion sits across the street from my Cross House. That such a fine mansion was in immediate proximity to the Cross House had a lot to do with my buying the latter. Today, after surviving for about 150 years, and after after serving the public for a century, the Plumb mansion is…

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Plumb Place: Why Is This House Being Hidden?

Across the street from my house is Plumb Place, one the finest houses in Emporia. It was built by Senator Preston and Carrie Plumb. After Preston died, Carrie significantly enlarged the mansion over a period of many years. In 1920, after Carrie’s death, the Plumb children donated the mansion to the YWCA to be used…

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A GREAT DISCOVERY: The Lost Newman Mansion

Today, on the NE corner of 12th Street and State, Emporia, is a church. The church, completed in 1948, replaced an extraordinary house, one of the finest in Emporia. The 1892 house was designed by architect Harry Jones, of Minneapolis. The house was commissioned by G. W. Newman, who owned Newman’s department store in the…

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Plumb Place: A Failure of Imagination?

In 1967, during a launch rehearsal, a fire killed the three astronauts in the command module of Apollo 1. During the investigative hearings, Frank Borman stated that the tragedy was due to a failure of imagination. A failure of imagination. He explained that NASA had taken into account the many dangers posed to the crew while in space,…

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The Elks Club. Emporia, Kansas

  I had no idea. I did love the decoration of the club. Those gas/electric chandeliers! The table in the foreground! The patterned wallpapers! I was also interested in the brightly lighted area to the right. An atrium? My curiosity aroused, I contacted my friend Steve, who was born and raised in Emporia, and is…

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CAN THIS HOUSE BE SAVED: 505 Exchange Street, Emporia, Kansas

                                        Most people will run screaming from this house. But the fire damage, as you can see, is minimal and mostly contained to the north side of the attic. From what I can tell, the roof…

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Can This Building be Saved: 331 Merchant Street, Emporia, Kansas

       

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THE FORGOTTEN HOUSE: 810 Mechanic, Emporia, Kansas

Damn. Damn, damn, damn. Why am I not a zillionaire? For, if I were, I would be saving the world’s architectural heritage. Damn.   The other day young Brian and Bailey asked me if I wanted to go look at 810 Mechanic in Emporia. My heart instantly raced, as I had previously identified 810 as…

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Turning a Diamond into a Rhinestone

                                The particularly tragic thing about the bank’s new windows is that they will have a lifespan of about 15 years. The original windows lasted for a century. And, had they been restored, would have lasted for another century. On…

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An Unexpected Outcome.

  I have been trying to buy 618 for 2-1/2-years. It is just north of the Cross House, and is by the same architect, Charles Squires. Squires lived right behind 618. In 2014, I offered the owner $20K. He countered with $30K. Which I didn’t have. In 2015 I offered $10K (all I had). He…

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