City Directories and History: On first appearance, this significant home suggests it was constructed at one time. However, with close examination, the home reveals that it was constructed in several stages ending with a shell that ties them each together beautifully. It is commonly held that Thomas Wilson Caldwell (1819-1872), and his wife Martha Carolina Wilson – Caldwell (1825-1906), constructed the home around 1840 if not earlier, with subsequent additions in the late 1850’s. Wilson’s brother, Joseph Caldwell (1807-1888), a signer of the Ordinance of Secession, and his wife Margaret Wilson – Caldwell (1813-1856) were frequent visitors to the plantation.
The home has recently, 2014, been acquired by Mr. and Mrs. James “Jim” Lechner, who are planning on a complete restoration of the handsome home. R&R’s preservationist, J.I. “Rusty” Robinson visited the house and with the new owner, revealed the three phases of construction taking place over a three decade period. The home exhibits technological changes in construction which clearly showcase the growth of the house and its architectural changes.
Mrs. Carolyn Anne R. Boynton wrote and contributed the following on 7/25/14 – “My father, George Alphaeus Ruff, called “Alf,” (1910-2003), lived in this house and, when I was a child, my family visited my grandmother, Myrtle Ellen Caldwell Ruff (1878-1963), there. She was the wife of Christian Suber Ruff (1873-1952) and my understanding is that they moved into the house when their home burned down. I remember my great-grandmother, Rosannah Caroline Moffett Caldwell, wife of John Calvin Caldwell (1847-1909), in this house. She lived to be 99 years old. I’m not sure of the relationship of Rosanna Caroline Moffett Caldwell (1851-1951) to the owners of the house but I think they must have been cousins. My grandmother lived in the house with a bachelor son until around 1959, I believe, when the son, John Calvin Ruff, died. In the photo of “Thomas Wilson Caldwell’s signature on a board in the attic,” you can see in the lower left what appears to be “Alf” and above what may be “Ruff,” at least a clear “ff.” I’m very happy that this lovely old home will be restored. I hope to visit it someday in the future to tell the new owners of the “old days” when I was a child there with all the “Old folks” rocking on the front porch.”
See the wonderful video presentation of the Caldwell House by clicking on the name or under the Media Menu on R&R.
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IMAGE GALLERY – Misc. images taken of the Caldwell Home from 2009 – 2014
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