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Historic Gilded Age Victorian outside of Chicago hits the market for $490K

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The George Garnsey-designed home is full of original details and charming ornamentation

A Queen Anne style home with a walk-up front door, turret, and ornate gables. The exterior paint is flaking off.
While the exterior could use some love, much of the home’s interior is in excellent condition.
Photos courtesy of Tom Krebsbach, Vintage Home Realty

Fans of Gilded Age architecture will find much to like about this handsome 1885 Queen Anne Victorian located about 60 miles northwest of Chicago in suburban Marengo, Illinois.

Designed by notable architect George Garnsey, the five-bedroom mansion features a number of well-preserved, museum-like rooms boasting original stained glass windows, detailed pocket doors, and ornamental fireplaces.

Although the exterior could certainly use a fresh coat of paint, the 5,200-square-foot residence received a lot of work in recent years. The most prominent upgrade is the renovated kitchen with heated stone floors, marble counters, and contemporary appliances.

“The inside still has a couple of cosmetic things, but other than that it is very good shape—especially for a home this size,” listing agent Tom Krebsbach of Vintage Home Realty tells Curbed Chicago. The old structure’s walk-up attic plus a pair of semi-finished rooms could also be converted into more living space or even a bed and breakfast.

The historic Marengo mansion is currently seeking $490,000. The asking price, however, does not include the owner’s massive collection of Lucille Ball memorabilia. “The owner adores her,” added Krebsbach. “I wasn't sure about it at first, but I decided to include [the collection] in the photos for added interest.”

A dining room with old fashioned wallpaper, light fixtures, and furniture. There is detailed woodwork around the doors, windows, and stone fireplace mantle.
Inside, much of the architecture, woodwork, and wallpaper is well-preserved.
A sitting room with historic-looking tables, artwork, and carpeting.
Many rooms are a throwback to the Gilded Age.
A close look at a fireplace with carved wood details and ceramic tiles with a floral patterns.
The level of detail in the doors, hinges, fireplaces, and other hardware is impressive.
A kitchen with dark cabinets, white stone floors and counters, and updated appliances and lighting.
The home’s kitchen has been brought up to contemporary standards.
A bedroom with a four-post bed centered in front of three windows.
A bedroom boasting a stone fireplace and three windows with wooden shutters.
A bedroom with a wood sleigh bed and walls covered with old black-and-white portraits of actress Lucille Ball.
The current owner certainly loves Lucy.