Historic Curtin home gets modern amenities; facelift
Austen Thibault, The Union Democrat /
A late-1800s mansion in Sonora has gone from falling apart to state of the art.
The J.B. Curtin mansion has been fully restored from its abandoned, dilapidated state and is in the final stage of becoming a one-of-a-kind home for senior citizens.
Steve Case, of Sonora, bought the sagging, foundationless mansion in 2010 for $94,000, because he didn't want to see it torn down.
The 6,800-square-foot home on Columbia Way, a block from Sonora High School, was built and paid handsomely for in 1897 by prominent Sonora lawyer J. B. Curtin, who was later elected as a state senator and nearly became governor in 1914.
But time and the elements were not kind to the austere home.
"On this side of the house, there was nothing left," Case said, pointing to the north front of the home, where a deck rotted away. "All the bathrooms you can see, we put there."
Case, a construction materials dealer general manager, "jumped head first" into restoration with help from less than a half dozen workers.
For the complete story, see the Aug. 1, 2014, edition of The Union Democrat.