The Wampler House was our grandparent’s home. They bought the house, barn, garage, spring house, a couple of chicken houses and 4 acres for $2500 in 1938. The original structure (house) was built in 1857 by John and Sarah Mathers. Some of the Mather’s descendants have stayed with us several times. They come from Crawfordsville, Indiana and Camargo, Illinois. In 1919 a tornado took the top of the house off and set one of the chimneys in the front yard where it stands today. The owners of the house at the time of the tornado turned the chimney into a planter for flowers. My grandparents followed the tradition and we do the same.
The Wampler House is an historical building. The interior and exterior walls of the original house are fifteen inches thick with 3 layers of brick and then drywall over that. The fireplaces located in the parlor and library had been plastered over whenever central heat became popular. We have opened them back up. The barn and garage still stand on the adjoining lot, although the original barn is inside another barn that was built by the Amish.
Our dad was an only child so there are just the 4 grandchildren, Diana, Delores, Denise and David. Yes all “D’s”!! Our brother bought the house from grandmother after she passed away. He had 3 apartments in it for 10 years. He had decided to sell it so Denise and I (Diana) decided to buy it. It needed a lot of work and we did not want to keep it as an apartment building so the Bed & Breakfast idea started to take root.
Work began in February 2000 with the demolition of the interior of the house. Drop ceilings and paneled walls came out. Large soft maple trees and old cedar trees had to go and construction began on the “Caretaker Apartment”, where my husband and I live. We needed to be on the premises when the construction of the addition for the bed and breakfast was added. With the original part of the house completely renovated and the addition done, we opened IU graduation week-end in May 2003.
Our grandparents loved people and were always entertaining, we believe they would be very pleased to see that their home is still welcoming people.