Thursday, April 24, 2014

Budmar Farm

The view this past weekend
I've admired Budmar Farm (above) on North Ridge Road for a long time. Every time I go to Polansky's on Dewey Road nearby, I pass the stately estate, and wonder what the story is behind it.

That's why I was happy to find the article below on microfilm. It was written by Hermaine Speigle and ran in the Journal on August 29, 1971. It tells the story of the interesting couple that bought the rundown old farmhouse around 1948 and transformed it into a handsome showplace.


Home Tour Includes Amherst Hilltop Farmhouse
Staff Writer

BUDMAR FARM, the country home of Burton (Bud) and Marilyn Jenne, sets so high above North Ridge Road, Amherst, that the driveway almost parallels the frontage to make the grade manageable.

The knoll on which the 100 year old farmhouse sets drops again, to give visitors a breathtaking view of sloping pasture and rolling fences to Rock Creek Run, hidden by groves of brush and trees.

The home and farm are on this year's American Association of University Women's Home Tour, Oct. 2. Visitors will find it a unique example of country living with all the advantages of city living, too.

Bud Jenne was an Amherst shopkeeper, owner of H. and J. Cleaners, when he and Marilyn bought the 11 acre farm and run-down homestead 23 years ago. There was no electricity. All water was carried from an outside pump, and the hillside privy was a very necessary fixture.

Excellent sewers, water and electric power lines which serviced the sanatorium on the south side of Ridge Road were tapped.

"We can't imagine why the former owners never did this," said Bud. "All utilities were easily accessible, having been installed on the north, our side of the road."

The Jennes closed off the upstairs, and installed the bathroom on the ground level. They also built two large barns.

Bud finds the farm ideal for his hobby-occupation of raising standard-bred Tennessee Walking horses. He "showed" champion horses for many years, but no longer does this since he is employed as a harness racing starter.

His most famous horse, champion "Sun's Knight," now 18 years old, grazes peacefully in the pastures. There is also a mare, a suckling colt and a yearling.

The Jennes planned major remodeling of the house six years ago, to bring their view indoors as much as possible. A spacious kitchen-dining-family room occupies the rear of the house, and large picture windows frame the beauty of the seasons.

Bud was artist-designer of the remodeling, says Marilyn, while she refereed utilitarian ideas in the kitchen.

Focal point is a huge brick fireplace wall in the family room. An oil portrait of "Sun's Knight" shares a place of honor with the rifle which Marilyn's great-great grandfather, Lewis Hanchet, carried in the Civil Ear.

Natural-finish wormy chestnut boards panel the walls, and random plank flooring covers the family-dining area. Circular rugs in bright blue add a dash of color.

The old farm kitchen now has new cupboards and up-to-the-minute appliances. Interesting is the brick backing of the counter which extends into the room, giving Marilyn ample L-shaped working space.

"We didn't have any problems with bearing beams," says Bud.

Working with Mrs. Hamilton Carlson, a friend and decorator, Marilyn chose off-white carpeting for the living room and master bedroom beside it.

Unusual is the medallion-type, baskets-of-fruit print used on the sofa, a love seat and chair with ottoman. The pear print, in orange, yellow and soft green, is used again in matching pictures above the  sofa.

Although she says she never plays it any more, Marilyn enjoys dusting the Esti [sic] pump organ, more than 70 years old, on which her mother took her first piano lesson.

Most of the antique treasures in her home, she said, are art glass and china from her mother's collections.

There are rare and unique examples of cranberry glass, Tiffany vases,  a Bisque doll and figurine, Mary Gregory syrup pitchers with pewter handles and hinged tops.

A pair of Aurene bud vases, signed, are delicate and exquisite, but so simple in design that a casual glance might lead you to think they were of no special interest, whereas they are truly priceless and irreplaceable.

There are also blue milk glass and the more usual white milk glass, but in unique covered dishes with a swan, hen and kitten tops. Each has inset eyes of a different color.

Marilyn has also given her grandmother's Delft china plates, coffee mugs and lusterware prominent display.

In her bedroom, antique dolls sit in a century old rocker.

Marilyn had one antique find which is native to the homestead. When dismantling an old barn, they uncovered, hidden in the beams, a pharmacist's bottle labled "Epizotic, for horses and adults. A cure for gleet, strangles and influenza.

Surrounding the house is a four-acre plot of fenced land, hillside and rolling contours, that Marilyn and Bud keep nicely mowed.

Tour visitors will find relaxing here so restful that they'll really hate to leave. They may even get a glimpse of "Sun's Knight" and the new colt.

For tour tickets, contact Mrs. F. H. Smith, 1358 Hawthorne Ave., or Mrs. Andrew Keep, 1086 Hawthorne Ave., Lorain. They are handling reservations for the luncheon at the Lorain Country Club, 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Proceeds for the tour of six homes, three in Amherst, two in Lorain and the sixth in Sheffield Lake, will go to the club's scholarship fund.


Drew Penfield said...

And there's an interurban connection too: the former Cleveland Southwestern & Columbus electric railway right-of-way runs along the back of the property, and there are still bridge abutments on either side of the creek next to North Dewey Road.

Anonymous said...

I moved here in 1975 and I always wondered what the story was with BudMar Farms as well - but I got here four years too late to read the story. Wow, Hermaine Speigle was really a decent writer - the story was interesting and detailed unlike the pap that the MJ runs today. For a while a couple of years ago, it looked like the current owners had switched from horses to alpacas or llamas (I can't tell the difference) but I haven't seen them on the property in some time either - but in fact I don't get by that way much anymore.
Don Wozniak