Civil War era home in Liberty being restored to former glory

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LIBERTY, Mo. -- A construction crew in Liberty steps into a time machine. It's taking them back in time without ever leaving the metro.

When Brad Rolf took on this restoration project on Leonard Street in Liberty late last year, he didn't know everything he was getting into.

The Gittings-Carr house was built in the 1860's, and Rolf bought the home last year from a descendant of the original owners. As he and his crew have worked, they've discovered relics from yesteryear, like old tools, household hardware and original windows, some of which, Rolf says he'll work into the restored house design.

The Gittings-Carr house was originally built by Darius Gittings, a local banker who started the project in 1861.

Rolf says he has $400,000 of his company's money invested in the project, and he intends to restore it to post-Civil War glory.

"It's basically 150 years of undisturbed property," Rolf said. "We know its going to take a unique buyer who will appreciate the history."

Rolf's workers are mostly volunteers. Some are history buffs. Others are skilled laborers who want to protect Clay County's legacy.

Chris Edlin is a retired power company worker, who marvels at the history around him.

"It's one of those Civil War houses," Edlin said. "It's amazing, to look at the walls -- some of them are that thick with bricks. It's just incredible."

"We're actively looking for someone who appreciates the history," Rolf said. "In the same way it was passed on to us, we have the same obligation to pass it on to the next owner who will care for it and appreciate the history."

Rolf says his crew expects to have the job completed by August, at which point, he'll work with local historians to find a private buyer.

Rolf also has a blog that follows his historical restoration projects. Here's a link to his blog.

Click here for Sean McDowell's FOX 4 Facebook page.


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