Standing tall at the corner of East Beresford and South Amelia avenues in DeLand is a dilapidated-looking historic home on a large corner lot. It’s the Stockton-Lindquist House, purported to be the oldest building in DeLand.
Some 3,000 vehicles pass through the intersection each day. Some of those people, like a concerned reader who contacted The Beacon, wonder if the home is in danger of collapse. Its exterior, which includes a large wraparound porch held up by teetering columns of red bricks, does not inspire confidence in its structural integrity.
But, according to the property manager, Barry Sandhaus, the house is on the verge of an intensive renovation.
“The first step is the outside,” Sandhaus said.
A recent tour of the home revealed an interior in remarkably good shape, with interesting architectural features.
“It’s got such character,” Sandhaus said.
The building has a long history; it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and traces its roots back to 1870, when a one-story house was built on the property by A.H. Stockton.
According to information from the National Archives, the home and adjacent orange groves were eventually sold “sight-unseen” to Andrew Lindquist in 1895 for $500. That same winter, a historic freeze devastated Florida’s citrus industry.
Luckily, Lindquist was a carpenter, and was able to successfully continue his trade, as well as to expand the small home over the course of 20 years into the 2,300-square-foot, two-story building it is today.
Lindquist’s touch can be seen all over the home, Sandhaus said. The floors are heart pine, and the building itself has an unusual balloon framing — the studs run the entire height of the building, instead of each story being framed separately.
“Balloon framing was actually a derogatory term, implying the house would fill up with air and float away,” Sandhaus said.
Descendants of Lindquist lived on the property until 1969. It was sold to a couple who reportedly were so incensed by the loss of land when Beresford Avenue was widened in the early 1980s that they left the house vacant, moved to Georgia, and refused to pay their property taxes, according to the National Register documentation.
Since the mid-1990s, the historic home, under the care of a single owner, was being slowly restored and modified. “Haunted house” tours were staged every Halloween, along with various other events and fundraisers.
In 2016, the property was sold to a real estate investment firm. It changed hands again in 2017, and is currently owned by a limited-liability corporation under a trustee deed. The LLC hired Sandhaus to oversee things.
“People have a trustee deed when they wish to keep their names private,” Sandhaus said.
According to Sandhaus, under the direction of these nameless owners, work is steadily moving forward on restoration for the home, which is intended to most likely become student housing.
With permitting complete, and financing underway, Sandhaus expects the exterior to be revamped by October.