Rose Oliver receives national DAR award
Posted: Friday, January 13, 2012 1:02 pm
Rose Allen Oliver, a member of the Jacob Flournoy Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution, recently received the National DAR Historic Preservation Recognition Award.
Chapter regent Sallie Ferguson was notified of the award by Elizabeth “Betsy” Reynolds Kuster, national DAR vice chairman of the Historic Preservation Recognition Award. Mrs. Ferguson said national DAR goals include preserving the past, enhancing the present and investing in the future, all of which Mrs. Oliver has been engaged.
Mrs. Oliver and her husband, Royce Oliver, purchased what is known in the local area as the Parks Weaks House, located at 219 Third St. in Fulton in 1983.
A certificate issued for the home and signed by Gov. Wendell Ford reads, “The Kentucky Heritage Commission has designated the Louis Weaks House, a Kentucky Landmark and deems it worthy of preservation.”
Even though the certificate is in the name of Louis Weaks, this is the same house as the Parks Weaks house. The house is known by its original owners, Parks H. and Olivia Weaks. Their son, Louis Weaks, lived in the house with his wife, Elsie. Royce and Rose Oliver are the third owners of the house. The Olivers have spent almost 30 years renovating the house. A marker attached to the front porch wall verifies the designation.
The house is located in the Carr Historic District, which was entered in the National Register of the United States Department of the Interior National Park Service National Register of Historic Places in 2001. The designation was signed by David L. Morgan, executive director/Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office and by Elson H. Beale.
The house, which was built in 1899, has the original kitchen and screened in porch of a small house which was on the property at that time.
The Victorian-style two-story frame home has a large entrance hall with a round beveled window, a carved Victorian divider and a winding staircase. Two sets of oak pocket doors grace the parlor. The dining room, which has an oak parquet floor, has a window seat in its bay window.
Wanting to maintain the integrity of the original architecture, the Olivers removed the roof down to its wood shingles and replaced them with shingles that mimic those of 1899. The winding staircase was stripped to its original oak wood, and the floors were professionally restored.
During the past year, the Olivers have completely restored the kitchen by installing a pine ceiling and Amish cabinets conducive to the 1899 look. A portion of the original light fixture is still prominent in the kitchen ceiling light. The kitchen floor was removed, and some new floor joists were installed. The vinyl floor was replaced with Travertine tile, which extends into the breakfast room. A porcelain Rosenthal plaque, signed by Albrecht Durer in 1526, is displayed in the breakfast room. The Olivers added period wood shutters, but retained the original exterior wood siding.
An antique Venetian crystal chandelier has been installed in the dining room, where a cherry Duncan Phyfe dining room set, which is more than 100 years old, is on display. Accenting the dining room walls are three framed watercolors painted by Kentucky artist Mildred Boggs and a large oil painting of a mother and child and two Ray Harm prints. Harm is also a Kentucky artist.
The original Victorian bathroom fixtures have remained in the downstairs bathroom, where granite floor tile has been laid. Mrs. Oliver is preparing to restore the upstairs bathroom to the Victorian period. She has purchased a cherry, marble top vanity and an antique lighting fixture. Granite tile will also be installed on the bathroom floor and in the shower.
Antiques from the 1800s have been used to decorate the home, including an antique grandfather clock which came from the Gid Willingham estate in Graves County, Ky.
Mrs. Oliver has shared her home with fellow DAR members during meetings and with friends and the community during events such as a walking tour of homes in the Carr Historic District. Friends and family were also present when Susan Oliver Rushing descended the beautiful winding staircase to take her father’s arm on her wedding day.
In the spring of 2011, Mrs. Oliver hosted a dinner party for members of the local Habitat for Humanity. The dinner party was in celebration of the finishing of a Habitat home and the completion of extensive renovation of the Oliver home.
In addition to their own home, the Olivers have preserved the past by helping to preserve businesses in the Fulton area. They made new shutters for the Fulton City Food Bank building, which sits in the downtown historic area, and enlisted the help of a local Boy Scout troop to paint the shutters as their contribution to “Let’s Paint the Town,” a beautification effort in the Fulton-South Fulton area.
As a founding member of the board of directors of the local Habitat for Humanity group, Mrs. Oliver is enhancing the present. She has spent countless hours preparing and serving coffee and cookies to workers who have constructed nine homes in Fulton and Hickman counties in Kentucky. She has made pots of spaghetti, dozens of cookies and lots of baked desserts, including her homemade carrot cakes, and worked in the food booths during Fourth of July celebrations and the Twin Cities’ Banana Festival to raise funds to build the new homes.
A past Sunday school class teacher, Mrs. Oliver has volunteered her time for during a summer feeding program and at Vacation Bible School. She also serves on the church flower committee.
For several years, Mrs. Oliver has been a hostess for the Jacob Flournoy DAR spring luncheon. As a hostess, she has helped to plan the menu, arrange for a caterer, furnish flowers, set up tables, arrange place cards and placemats, decorate the meeting area and direct the caterers on meeting day.
Mrs. Oliver invests in the future by helping to arrange for speakers in the local schools during Constitution Week and by conducting a class on the constitution and its writers. She has also served as a room mother in the local schools.
The Jacob Flournoy chapter nominated Mrs. Oliver for the National Historic Preservation Award. Mrs. Ferguson completed and submitted the nomination, which included letters of recommendation from Habitat for Humanity board member Cecil May III and DAR member and neighbor Peggy Lohaus. Mrs. Lohaus’ home is also listed on the Carr Historic Registry.
Published in The Messenger 1.12.12