Honoring history

House where Andrew Johnson died to be restored
By Lesley Hughes
star staff
lhughes@starhq.com

  It won't be moved in a U-Haul truck, but once Dr. Dan Schumaier gets finished taking it apart, the pieces will be hauled away to be put back together again. In an effort to preserve a piece of hometown history, Schumaier is restoring the house where President Andrew Johnson died on July 31, 1875. The house was purchased for $26,000 during an August auction.
  Originally, the house was known as the Stover House, owned by Col. Daniel Stover, and was located in Stoney Creek. In 1925, Dr. Dan Ensor became the last owner before the house was given to Fudd Campbell by Ensor's widow. The house was almost in ruins when Campbell moved it to where it stands now on West Elk Avenue.
  Schumaier is following in Campbell's footsteps by taking the house apart piece by piece before reconstructing it on his Stoney Creek property board by board. Campbell plans on restoring the house for tourism and educational purposes.
  "They gave it to Fudd Campbell, who put it up down here to use as kind of a museum for some of the history. He did preserve it. He changed it a little bit by putting a porch on it. So now we are going to put it back to the way it was originally. We are taking it apart board by board and then rebuilding it board by board. So we are going to put it back up and it will be available for school kids to see. It certainly has got a lot of history to it," he said.
  Schumaier has photos of the initial exterior and interior design to model the restoration against. The 1797 house was larger, but a portion burned after 1875.
  "After Andrew Johnson was out of his presidency he came up to visit his daughter. His daughter married Daniel Stover. He loved to come visit up here. So he came to visit and was struck with a stroke. They took him upstairs and he died in the upstairs bedroom. This is the original portion of the house where he died," Schumaier said.
  Schumaier also owns the Reuben-Brooks Plantation, 1548 Blue Springs Rd., in Stoney Creek. His plantation and the Stover plantation border, meaning after he restores the house it will be located close to it's original foundation.
  Carmen Jackson, Howard Heaton, and Earl Montgomery took the house apart in the 1960s when it was moved to FuddTown. Dennis Hardin, Jerry Hardin, Danny Sons, and Brian Ruchti, with J.L.J. Home Improvements is performing the present-day relocation.
  Schumaier plans to spend approximately $25,000 to move the house, and even more in restoration costs afterwards, but, he said, "It will look really good when we get it back together. When we get done it will be pretty nice. At least it will preserve something for the county."