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Lancaster's historic tour of homes
Four homes showcase city's history
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    In conjunction with the Grant Regional Health Center  Auxiliary, part of the Lancaster 175th Anniversary celebration will include a historic tour of homes next Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at City Hall, the Chamber office, or Grant Regional Health Center.
    The four homes selected for the tour of homes represent a large swath of the city’s history, reaching back to Lancaster’s second decade of existence, and show the stewardship of today’s residents, respecting the community’s history.

Clark/Tiedemann/Busch Home,  140 N. Jefferson St.

    No easier way of showing this is looking at the home currently owned by Larry and Cindy Busch, located at 140 N. Jefferson Street, which have taken the past five years bringing the home back to a level two of its most prominent tenants, John Clark and Charles Tiedemann.

    One of the oldest standing homes in Lancaster, the Clark/Tiedemann Home was built in 1849, originally for John M. Otis, an early Lancaster merchant.  The brick Greek Revival Style house was available in 1853 when attorney John G. Clark first rented, then in 1855, purchased the house.

    Clark’s story shows the impact Lancaster residents had in America in the second half of the 19th Century. Clark served in the Civil War, reaching the rank of Colonel.  Clark subsequently was involved in politics, serving as Lancaster’s mayor, then as a state legislator, and as a Federal Judge of the Oklahoma Territory. He continued to own and live in his Jefferson St. house until his death in 1917. 

    Clark placed his stamp on the home in 1877 by adding a brick one-story addition to the south side that contains a bay window, showing how such houses were sometimes modified by their early owners as need and fashion dictated.
    The home was owned and occupied throughout most of the 20th Century by Charles Tiedemann, a Lancaster baker,
    Some of the features of this house include:  double parlors, a wood fireplace, picture rails, walk-out bay windows, oak floors, and a black walnut staircase.

    The Busches have owned the home since 2007. When they purchased the home, it had been divided into a duplex. Being probably the oldest standing house in Lancaster and having a huge amount of historical significance, the Busch’s started on a “labor of love” to restore this fine home. It has been reconverted to a single dwelling residence, and updated in many areas while preserving it’s original character. 

Halbert/Angeli Home, 253 S. Harrison St.

    Being erected 21 years after the Clark Tiedemann Home, in 1870, is the next stop on the tour, the home currently occupied by Jon and Rita Angeli. The grey wood structure was built by Franklin Halbert, family reportedly built several homes on Cherry Street and later on his son-in-law (Reed) was a local dentist who built Reed’s Opera House. Halbert had lost his son, George F. during the Civil War as George was a member of Lancaster’s famed Iron Brigade’s Company F of the 7th Regiment and was killed at the Battle of South Mountain during the Civil War. George’s name is inscribed on the monument on the Courthouse grounds and he is buried at the Antietam National Cemetery. Franklin was active in city politics as well as running the County Home.

The house was built as a “suburban residence” because, when it was originally built, it stood outside the city limits, with the lot  measuring two city blocks. The house itself is Italianate, though not as elaborate as the nearby Lucke Home (which Halbert had also later built). The front veranda (porch) is original but appeared too small for the large house so a round porch was added utilizing a technique (historic interpretation) modeled after a home in Des Moines, Iowa. The lower “spindles” on the round porch are copied from the Ham House in Dubuque, Iowa. The shutters were added as was the cast iron cresting on the front porch and house roof (all old).

Other details added over the years include the French doors into the parlor and living from the main hallway, which were added in the 1890s. The current kitchen was originally pantries and work rooms, e.g., wood, fruit cellar, etc. The original kitchen in the main art of the house now has the basement stairway and laundry area. The house features old, though not original, light fixtures and the original hardware on the windows and doors. Furnishings are highlighted by several pieces of Renaissance Revival furniture featuring a local Joel Allen Barber game table. Period pictures, paintings and accent pieces are featured, including paintings by Lancaster, Cuba City and Galena area artists that the Angelis have collected over the years. A number of local pieces of furniture also adorn the house.

Another historic touch is the street lamp on the front lawn, which is an original “harp” lamp from the streets of Shorewood.

Taylor/Crubel Home, 611 W. Hickory St.

A connection between our first and third home, currently owned by the Crubel Family. The land for the 1890 home is in a section of the city that was known as Clark’s Woods, named after its owner John G. Clark, who owns the 1849 home on the tour. In February of 1890 he and his wife, Minerva, sold the block to Stephen Taylor, who worked in Clark’s law office since 1887.

Taylor and his wife, Mary, had the home built that year so they could move to the city and raise their quickly growing family. That family consisted of four boys: William (born 1884), Herbert (1886), Everett (1888), and Joseph George (1903); as well as two daughters: Margaret (born 1890) and Eva (1898). Stephen and Mary also lost one child soon after birth. The Taylors lived in the home for more than four decades.

Stephen Taylor’s hobby was woodworking.  He made the “fine pieces of cabinet work” in his house.

Schreiner/Hoffman Home, 216 S. Tyler St.

The fourth home on the list is a perfect example of Lancaster in the first half of the 20th Century, both in the history of the community and the architectural leanings of the region at the time, the home occupied by Dr. Peter Hoffman and his family, and built and first owned by Herbert and Anna Schreiner.

Herbert was the son of mercantilers John and Sophia Schreiner, and after he graduated from college continued in the family business. In 1918, Herbert the commissioned the home to built for he and his new bride, Anna. The home is a Prairie Style home