VSARTHAGE, Mo. – One of Carthage’s most historic homes is on the market, and its listing with an online real estate company has gained national attention.
Ron Petersen Sr. and the Ruth I. Kolpin Foundation, named after his mother, have decided to sell Carter Estates, a complex on East Chestnut Avenue that includes the restored 1880s home of Dr. John Carter, one of the first doctors to live in Carthage during the Reconstruction period after the end of the Civil War in 1865.
The ad, which only recently appeared on the Zillow real estate website, was posted on December 28 on the Facebook page and Twitter feed of an online newsletter titled “Zillow Gone Wild”, which presents what he calls “the best of Zillow”. “The post has over 1,200 comments and has been shared over 850 times, and it was featured on The Kansas City Star.
“It deserves attention, really,” Petersen said Friday during a tour of the house with the Joplin Globe. “It’s not a little farm that you sell here – it’s a historic place, and at the same time my mom really made it beautiful just during the time she spent doing it all. was a labor of love; she loved the property very much.
Dr John Addison Carter, who built the original mansion, was inducted in 2013 into the Pantheon of Heroes of Carthage, and Ruth Kolpin Rubison was inducted in 2015.
Petersen said his mother rented the house when they arrived in Carthage in 1963 and bought the KDMO-AM 1490 radio station. This station and the FM station that Kolpin and Petersen would start shortly thereafter were all broadcast from the first floor of the house, which is still known as the “Radio House” by many in Carthage.
Petersen said Mayse and Potter Construction owned the house at the time, and soon after taking over Kolpin, they offered to sell it to him.
“My mom bought it and over time she could see that the place needed loving care,” said Petersen. “The only way for her to do that was to move the radio station, so in 1979 we moved downtown where we are currently located. “
Before starting to renovate the house, Petersen said Kolpin bought the old Frisco train depot that stood for years in the Frisco Bottoms yard and moved it, stone by stone, to its location. present just northeast of the Carter Mansion.
She turned the train depot into a house and moved in while renovating the Carter house. The depot still has a bedroom and other living spaces in the old cargo handling rooms, as well as old wooden benches in an area that was probably the lobby.
Just north of the depot is a restored caboose. Peterson said it was an original Frisco Railroad caboose that had number 1201, the Carter Manor address, so his mother must have had it.
One of the first things Kolpin did when she brought her attention to the Carter House was to remove the white paint from the exterior brick walls of the house. She also restored the black walnut woodwork and ornate plaster ceilings, and she restored the rooms up to the attic, which she transformed into a living space in its own right.
She also emptied the basement, which Petersen said was a wet and dirty place at first. One room in the basement was apparently a laboratory used by Carter to prepare his own pharmaceuticals, a relatively common practice among 19th and early 20th century physicians.
Petersen pointed to a heavy stone desk in a room Kolpin turned into a family room.
“This room has Dr. Carter’s prep office where he composed all of his prescriptions,” Petersen said. “He’s been there for who knows when. This is Dr. Carter’s lab. The office is integrated into the building and made of stone. You would never want to move it. It was the lab room. There were probably chairs and tables in there. He was quite the guy.
Kolpin returned to the mansion after its renovation and lived there for years. Petersen said her mother decided to build a garage for her car, but like most of her ideas and projects, this one grew.
“She designed and redesigned and soon redesigned again what was supposed to be just a carriage house,” Petersen said.
“Eventually, she built the shed, a house with an elevator to all three floors. She had visions of having a place where she could recover. She knew that as she got older she might need a place because she couldn’t climb those stairs forever. She then decided to expand it and kept adding and adding new ideas to the plans until it was a bit bigger than the Carter Mansion, in fact.
In front of the Carter Mansion is a large gazebo that covers the stump of a huge throne-shaped maple tree.
Petersen said her mother was very proud of two large sugar maples that stood in front of the Carter Mansion. The trees were certified by the state of Missouri as bicentennial trees in 1976, that is, they were old enough to have lived in 1776 when the United States was born. In 1998, a storm blew over Carthage and knocked down one of them. Kolpin was very upset, her son said.
“I said, ‘Mom, look at the bright side: you can take this tree, saw it in wood, dry it in a kiln and maybe build something with it,” said Petersen. “That’s all it took. It didn’t take long for him to build this gazebo around this tree to commemorate it.
Petersen said her mother used the gazebo as a place of entertainment and had set up an ice maker, refrigerator, tables and chairs along the circular walls around the stump. The second maple had to be removed after his death and became a danger.
Peterson said the decision to sell the property was difficult, but he believes it is the right decision.
Much of the proceeds from the sale will go to the Kolpin Foundation, which will continue to be used to commemorate her mother.
He said his family and the Ruth Kolpin Foundation had considered keeping the property and turning it into a bed and breakfast with the rental proceeds going to the foundation, but they realized that was not feasible.
“It’s bittersweet, but there’s no way we can take care of this property,” Petersen said.
“It was difficult to make that decision, but now that I’ve made it, I think it’s the right decision. I really do. “