The Magazine

House Crush: The Justus Humiston House

by Leona Jaeger

One of the many things I love about old houses is what they can teach you — what they can help you imagine. My latest house crush has me imagining all sorts of things about life in 1769! If you love early American homes as much as I do, you’re about to fall head-over-heels in love with the Justus Humiston House — for sale on CIRCA!
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What is a State Historic Preservation Office?

by Jon Valalik (photo of the Leander Reeve Stone House in Hampton, IA by Ann Sullivan-Larson)

If you own an historic home, the State Historic Preservation Office might turn out to be your new best friend! Read all about it in this week’s edition of Old House 101.
The State Historic Preservation Office’s main purpose is to survey, document and nominate historic properties for the National Register of Historic Places, as well as support their rehabilitation. In addition to physical conservation, they promote historic preservation at a smaller scale by helping local communities educate and address issues of preservation with the public in their respective states. If you own an old house, there are some perks in here for you, too!
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10 Houses Under $50,000: August Edition

by Elizabeth Finkelstein

The August round-up of 10 Houses Under $50,000 has me yearning for the return of fall — I sure would LOVE to make use of some of these fireplaces! If you love fancy-pants woodwork and some teatime porches, you’ll have yourself a blast looking through the guilt-free houses below. Just make sure to send CIRCA your renovation photos once you’ve snatched up your favorite!
This week’s picks, right this way

The Grandest Victorian Home in America!

by Theresa Cacace (photo by William Liles)

If you love CIRCA, then chances are you’re also head-over-heels for all things Victorian! To help feed our need for towers, turrets and spindles, we’ve employed the lovely Theresa of the uber-popular Facebook page Vintage Wonderlust to take as all around the country showcasing her favorite Victorian houses.
In keeping with our “jaw-dropper” theme, let’s take a look inside a TRULY amazing (is amazing a strong enough word here?) Victorian home — The Carson Mansion!!! Located in Old Town, Eureka, CA, this home has been regarded as one of the highest executions of American Queen Anne Style architecture, and is widely considered to be “the grandest Victorian home in America.” Builder and lumber tycoon William Carson is believed to have said, “If I build it poorly, they would say that I was a damned miser; if I build it expensively, they will say I’m a show off; guess I’ll just build it to suit myself.” I say, job well done!
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Antique Finds For Your Vintage Farmhouse

by Lauren Spinelli

Welcome to our new column Lauren’s Picks, in which antiques lover Lauren Spinelli travels the globe (and the Internet!) hand-selecting her favorite vintage finds. This week we’ve got all the goods you’ll need to deck out your vintage farmhouse!
Relax and let the sweet breeze blow, because today I’m beautifying a classic, old farmhouse. With simplicity and affordability in mind, I carefully curated my favorite antique and vintage finds via the internet and beyond to decorate a farmhouse into a home. So, grab your favorite rocking chair, pour a cold glass of lemonade and enjoy my farm fresh picks, ya’ll!
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How to Choose Historic Paint Colors

by Candice Whitlow

Taking on a fixer-upper is very exciting, but let’s face it, we all want to see instant results! Don’t we all wish we could live in the world of reality TV, where your renovation is completed by a large team in a half an hour? Unfortunately, that’s never the case (sigh)! However, there is one project that can be done in a day and totally changes the look and feel of your home. It’s time to grab a drop cloth, a roller and some brushes — we’re about to get painting!
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7 Unconventional Historic Places to Stay in Newport, Rhode Island

by Lindsay Riddell

How many of you will only go on vacation if you can stay at a big, old house? Right, us too! We like to think of traveling as an opportunity to live vicariously through someone else’s marble mantel. Today CIRCA presents our selection of AirBnb rentals in lovely, historical Newport, RI! All photos courtesy of AirBnb.
My mom has talked about her dream vacation — fall in Rhode Island — for as long as I can remember. Naturally her obsession with visiting the Ocean State also became my own, and though it wasn’t quite fall, we finally checked one off our bucket lists last August. We started in Newport, where a main highlight (other than the seafood, the oceanside cliff walk, and the mansions of a bygone era) are the quaint streets lined with sweet homes dating from the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. And what’s better than spending a few days and nights in one of those beauties?
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You Should Move to Augusta, Georgia!

by Alix Adams (Photo of the Old Medical College of Georgia by Chip Bragg)  

Welcome to “You Should Move To…”, in which we travel the country scoping out beautiful, under-the-radar old house towns where big charm can be had for little cost. Have a city, town or neighborhood to recommend? Send it along to!
On the border of Georgia and South Carolina sits a charming southern town at the head of the Savannah River. The second oldest and second largest city in Georgia, the land has quite a few stories to tell! PLUS: Affordable houses galore!
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Black Walnut Plantation: 800 Acres of Historical Magic!

by Leona Jaeger (photo by Lee Sandstead)

If you are indeed an old house lover (as I am!), it’s probably safe to say that it’s not just the beauty and craftsmanship behind old homes that draws you in, but the history as well. There’s a bit of mystery — a curious desire to know who lived there and what it was like. I don’t know about you, but when face-to-face with a beautiful old house, questions will buzz around my head like flies at a picnic! If you want history, then you are sure to enjoy learning more about the interesting life of Black Walnut Plantation, which is listed on both the National and Virginia Register of Historic Places. PLUS: It’s for sale on CIRCA!
Black Walnut has a rich story dating back about 240 years. Just think: That’s before the United States were, well, the United States! The plantation was a 3,100 acre portion of an original land grant of 10,300 acres acquired by Richard Randolph in 1741. In the summer of 1768 these 3,100 acres were sold to William Sims; and from that point until today, Black Walnut Plantation has remained in the Sims’ family line.
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CIRCA School: Bargeboards

by Jon Valalik (photo by By Tom Parnell)

Grab your No. 2 pencils, everyone! It’s time for CIRCA School, where we uncover the fascinating facts behind everyone’s favorite old house details.
Have you heard of the writer and landscape architect Andrew Jackson Downing? Google him now! He’s been a recurring theme in CIRCA School, and for good reason. Though the man himself didn’t invent many of the architectural elements about which he wrote, he did aid in their popularization. This week we’ll learn about fun & whimsical bargeboards, a feature that appears in numerous Downing-designed and inspired homes!
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