The William P. Thomson House, constructed c.1834, is the oldest building in Grundy County. Located in the vicinity of Trenton, this brick and stone home, known as an “I” House, was constructed of bricks fired on the property. This estate included not only this substantial home (by 1834 standards) but also contained a slave quarters and the family cemetery, as well as an in-ground food storage structure, 12 feet by 25 feet with a vaulted stone roof. One room of the house was used as a medical office for Dr. Thompson, who traveled widely in northwestern Missouri in his practice of medicine. The home was also reported to be quite the social gathering place of the community, with its circular carriage drive and finely appointed rooms. The Thompson tract was acquired by Missouri State Parks and incorporated into the Crowder State Park some years ago. The house, its outbuildings and other structures have suffered severely from abandonment and lack of care and maintenance. It was discovered in 2009 that the Park system had decided to preserve and interpret the Thompson House site as a ruin. Enter the Friends of the Thompson House, who have tirelessly advocated for the restoration of this home that many had simply written off as already lost. The group successfully gained title to the house and adjoining acreage, and has so far raised $40,000.00 to put toward its restoration. Realizing that this is far shy of the amount needed for a restoration, the group hopes that they will be able to raise additional interest, and hence additional funds by this listing on Missouri Preservation’s list of Most Endangered Historic Places.
Listed in 2011.
Update: A local organization has acquired the Thompson House from the State Division of Parks and has already raised tens of thousands of dollars to restore the house for use by the community. The house is now ready to receive a replacement roof and windows as supporters have recently completed restoration of all the brickwork and foundation. They have also been milling and installing oak floor boards from locally raised timber. This is going to be an amazing transformation of an historic house that sat in ruin for many years!
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