Robert and Mary Ann Leavitt House

Endangered

Situated on an elevated 2-acre lot overlooking the Muscatatuck River on the outskirts of historic Vernon, IN, the Robert and Mary Ann Leavitt house is a Queen Anne style residence that was built ca. 1884.  Robert Leavitt was a carpenter who was born in New York in 1822 and died in February of 1903 in Vernon.  He is likely the builder of this dwelling. His wife, Mary Ann Pabody, was the daughter of Dr. Ezra Fitch Pabody and Mabel Butler.  Dr. Pabody was local physician and a member of the convention that formed the Indiana State constitution.  He was twice a member of the legislature and was elected three times as a probate judge of Jennings County.  The Pabody family likely owned this property as early as the 1850s and may have occupied an earlier residence on this site.  Mary Ann Pabody likely inherited the property after her parents died in the 1870s.

The Leavitt house is a 2-1/2 story frame structure with approximately 3456 square feet of living space.  The house sits on a partial basement with stone foundation.  The interior features 10 rooms with 3-4 bedrooms on the second floor.  The interior features original woodwork, hardwood floors, pocket doors, partial open staircase, corner living room fireplace and built-in window seat, and dining room with built-in cabinetry.  There is a walk-up unfinished attic space suitable for storage or expanded living.  The house’s original front porch is enclosed and was incorporated into the first floor front stair hall/parlor.  There is presently one bath on the first floor. Municipal water is located nearby, but the house will require a septic system.  A concrete pad on the north side of the house offers opportunity for expanded outdoor living with views of the Muscatatuck River.

The Leavitt house will require complete rehabilitation with all new systems, bathroom, and kitchen needed.  The house will be sold subject to preservation covenants attached to the deed.  Purchaser required to submit a rehabilitation plan for approval. Indiana Landmarks will require the removal of the house’s aluminum siding and restoration of the original wood underlying detailing as part of a rehabilitation plan for the house.  Reopening the original front porch is encouraged.   Additional acreage may be available for purchase if desired.  For more information, contact the southern regional office at south@indianalandmarks.org or 812-284-4534.

Vernon is the county seat of Jennings County, Indiana, and has a population of 312 people.  Nearby North Vernon, Indiana, has a population of 6,700, and is the area’s main commercial center.  Vernon is located 60 miles north of Louisville, KY, and 67 miles southwest of Indianapolis, Indiana.  The area affords picturesque rolling hills and farmland and is within 30 minutes of Interstate I-65.

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