Log Home Sale

Upcoming log home auction will
give new owner a piece of history

The Hitt family built the home
around 1785 it is believed

By Helen E. McKinney
Contributing Writer

LA GRANGE, Ky. (November 2005) – A piece of Oldham County history has recently gone on the market. Walter O’Bradovich is selling his home of the past 17 years, and along with it a glimpse into Oldham County’s past.

Oldham County Log Home

Photo provided

This 200-year-old home in La Grange
will go to auction on Nov. 5.

His log cabin home located at 2808 W. Hwy. 42 went on the market in mid-August. It was scheduled for a Sept. 10 auction, but the auction was cancelled because of an unresolved title issue. The auction has been re-scheduled for 11 a.m. on Nov. 5 by Best Bid Auctions, Tom Cox auctioneer.
The center cabin of the 2,600-square-foot home was built on site around 1785 to 1800. The year “1785” is supposedly carved into one of the interior logs, said Cox.
In the early 1960s, the Slocum family purchased the home. It was jacked up and a permanent rock and mortar foundation laid underneath, said Cox.
The original structure contained two upstairs and two downstairs rooms. The upper story was constructed of heavier lumber, which was thought to repel musket fire during the late 1790s, said Cox. It currently contains two bedrooms and a bath that were added when Josie Talbott lived there.
Talbott lived in the home from 1972 until 1988. She said, “My ex-husband fell in love with it. We wanted to raise our kids in the country.”
Three wings were later added to the center cabin. These additions were log cabins that had been moved from other sites in the county. The home has the modern conveniences of central heating, plumbing and electricity.
The downstairs portion contains a bedroom, bathroom, two stone fireplaces, an entrance room and a huge library. The log walls are visible from the interior of the home also, said Bob Kennedy, who has the home listed with RE/MAX Properties East.
The home rests on 8.92 acres but was originally part of a larger 355-acre tract granted to Joel Hitt. Hitt erected the home that he, his wife, Elizabeth, and their children lived in for many years. In the 1820s, the Hitt family tried to donate 50 acres for the county to build a courthouse on, said Kennedy.
But records are sparse about the home’s history, according to Oldham County History Center’s executive director Nancy Theiss. The Coons and McKenzie family members are buried in a nearby cemetery. “It is in the proximity of Russell’s Corner, also called Lynchburg,” said Theiss.
The home is worthy of preservation, although it would be difficult to establish the home as a vital landmark without proper documentation. Well-documented residences and functional buildings, such as the Rob Morris home, Duncan Memorial Chapel, older county cemeteries, several restored homes in La Grange and Crestwood and courthouses in Westport and La Grange, have been proven vital landmarks, said Theiss.
Other places close in age would be Harrod’s Creek Baptist Church in Brownsboro and some of the older farm homes that have been remodeled such as the Wilson-Brown Home and Hermitage Farm, said Theiss. One worthy former occupant was Louisville Mayor Charles P. Farnsley who bought the home in 1964 and lived there until the 1970s.
Farnsley sold the home to Talbott, who said, “There is definitely not that many original log homes around.” She heated the house with a pot bellied stove and coal before a furnace was put in and remembers a deep well that was used before city water was installed.
“We added the fireplace in the living room,” said Talbott. Talbott was lying in bed one evening when her daughter came into the room and said, “Mother. You have to get up.”
Talbott got up to find a five-foot-long snake on a log by the fireplace, which was not finished at the time. She called for her neighbor’s son to come over and kill it before realizing he was more scared of the snake than she was.
Talbott and her ex-husband did some remodeling work on the home, which is hidden from view behind trees and undergrowth. They added a pond for their children to fish in, and she remembers an old smokehouse and an underground spring not far from the barn.
O’Bradovich said he has recently put a new roof on the home. When he purchased the home, one of the additional cabins was not finished and he transformed it into a kitchen.
“It needed a lot of work done,” said O’Bradovich. His late brother Phillip also lived in the home with him and re-chinked between the logs of the home and handcrafted many of the furnishings.
At 70 years old, O’Bradovich decided the home was too much upkeep for one person. If he didn’t have to leave, he wouldn’t. “It’s too much for one person to take care of,” said O’Bradovich, who will be moving back to his native Pennsylvania.
“The home is excellent for its age,” said Cox. Approximately 120 bidding parties toured the home during an open house. There will not be any more open houses or auctions, but RE/MAX is entertaining offers at this time.
Listed at $425,000, it is a unique find and one “that you don’t come across everyday,” said Kennedy.

• For information about the home, call Tom Cox, auctioneer, at (502) 222-5212 or Patti Evans, Realtor, at (502) 550-7773.

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