The "Turnover Years"
The Graham Family

In June of 1888, John H. Graham purchased the
property where our house was built. In that year,
Edward Cronkrite and William Stewart divided their 160
acres into what appears to be three parcels. Graham
paid $2,198.80 for a 74-acre parcel on the south side of
Farm School Road. In December 1888, Warren Dart paid
$896 for a 50-acre parcel on the north side of Farm
School Road (most of this is now the Espenscheid
Woods forest preserve). The remaining 36 acres were
probably an eighth-mile-wide swath cut off the east
edge of the 160 acres, which were sold that same
month to Herman Bokhof for $996.62.
Left: The wedding announcement
for Sarah ("Sadie") Graham and
Charles Carnefix. The
announcement appeared in the
November 22, 1887 edition of the
Freeport Daily Journal newspaper.

Right: Two days later, the couple
was married at the home of
Sadie's parents. The November
25th edition of the Freeport Daily
Journal reported the couple's
marriage.

Sadie's older brother, David,
would later become President of
Freeport's Second National Bank.
Above: Notice of the settlement of the Samuel Davis estate, published in the
Freeport Daily Journal on June 26, 1885.

Below: After Samuel Davis died, he owed J. H. Graham for what probably were
farm-related supplies. John Graham was a Rock City merchant at that time,
and would later own some of the Davis land that makes up our property today.
This notice was filed in the May 26, 1883 edition of the Freeport Daily Journal.
Above: Two notices that appeared in the Freeport Daily Journal in December 1885, concerning property sold out of the Samuel Davis estate.
Left: Excerpt from Edward Cronkrite's biography in
Biographies of the State Officers and Thirty-Third
General Assembly of Illinois. Note to "large and
portly" State Representatives: Hire your own biographer.
Edward Cronkrite and William Stewart

The land that includes our home was sold out of the Samuel Davis
estate in December 1885 to Edward L. Cronkrite and William
Stewart. The Davis estate had only been settled about six months
earlier in June of 1885. Why the estate settlement took almost 3
years is unclear, but Samuel did have what appears to have been
substantial assets. By this time, Mary Davis was the only known link
to the original Davis clan still remaining in Rock Run Township. That
she sold the Davis family land is not surprising, since she came to
the area for no other reason we know of, than her marriage to
Samuel.

Cronkrite and Stewart paid about $20/acre for 160 acres carved out
of the Davis land in Section 27 of Rock Run Township (see green
outline in
this map). Both buyers were prominent Freeport citizens
who were well connected and probably well-off financially. Cronkrite
was a Freeport businessman, a two-term Freeport mayor, and
served in the Illinois House of Representatives. Stewart, also
referred to as "Captain Stewart", was an early settler in Stephenson
County and was elected twice as county sheriff. He served with John
Davis in the 46th Regiment during the Civil War.
We're not sure why Cronkrite and Stewart were attracted to this land, other than as an investment opportunity. They would only own the
property for about three years. They may have seen it as a chance to make money by dividing a larger piece of land into smaller tracts that
could be sold to a wider audience of interested buyers. Stephenson County real estate records show the two mortgaging the property to J.H.
Stearns for $2,140.80, or two-thirds of the purchase price. Stearns was a Stephenson County judge atthe time.
Above: Sam Warn's obituary appeared in the January 20, 1933 edition of the
Freeport Journal-Standard. This is another example of an obituary not
matching up with other informational sources. The date of birth conflicts with
what was reported on the 1900 U.S. Census. The census showed Sam's birth
year as 1860.
Above: Sam's divorce was granted in September 1928, the same year
he left for Los Angeles. We don't know why he moved there.
Above: These types of stories were common in the Freeport Daily
Journal. This report was published in December 1905, a time when
farm leases typically began for the following growing season. Walter
Lapp was the father of
Grace (Lapp) Mullican, who would later live in
our house. The Carnefix family was one of the original settlers of Rock
Run Township.

Below: In January 1908, Sam Warn sold the property to David Welling.
In turn, Sam Warn bought a property in Rock City that was owned by
David Welling. We're not sure why this real estate trade took place,
but suspect Sam may have been getting divorced from his first wife at
that time.
With the death of Samuel Davis came the most significant three decades of our property's history. The Davis land would be divided into a
74-acre parcel where our house was built, and the property changed hands several times. We were told that the original part of our house
was constructed in the 1880's, and the kitchen addition probably occurred during this chain of ownership. These years are curious to us,
because we can't figure out who built the original house or the kitchen addition. But each of the owners during this period had their own
interesting stories.
David F. Welling

In January of 1908, a pair of odd real estate transactions appeared on the same day in the
Stephenson County real estate records. Sam Warn sold his 74-acre property to David F.
Welling for $4,810. Welling then sold Sam a building he owned on Main Street in Rock City.
The Rock City property was where Welling had operated the David Welling Agricultural
Implement Shop.  The Freeport Journal-Standard society pages frequently mentioned
Welling's sale of horse-drawn buggies in the early 1900's. Some of those buggies were sold on
credit, as shown in Stephenson County public filings which Welling recorded against the
buyers of his equipment.

The Rock Run Historical Society suggests that the former Welling implement building became
a boarding house run by Sam's wife Ida. In the Society's historical calendar for the year 2000,
a photo taken sometime after 1911 shows what would have been the former Welling
implement building, and at that time was the "Ida Warns" boarding house. We wonder if
1908 was the time period in which Sam's marriage to Ida was in its final stages. His farm real
estate sales might have provided the funding to set up Ida with her own source of income,
while Sam moved to Freeport to start his business there.

Whatever the reason for the Warn/Welling real estate trade, David Welling owned our
property for only a short time. In September 1909, he sold the property to Franklin Hufford
for $5,550. Was Welling's purchase of the farm to help Sam Warn out of a situation, with
hope of selling the property later for more money? Maybe. On the surface, the transaction
would have netted Welling a decent return, but he could have been the owner who added the
kitchen addition during that time.
Above: In 1913, David Welling died at the young
age of 48. He and his wife, Mary, are buried in
the Saint Paul's Epplyanna cemetery near Davis,
Illinois. Mary died in 1960.
Excerpt, 1894 plat map of Rock Run Township, Stephenson County Illinois
Thomas Flynn

On April 4, 1896 John Graham sold the 74 acres to Thomas Jefferson Flynn Jr. for $1,350.
Known mostly as T.J. Flynn or Jefferson Flynn, Thomas was a Rock Run Township resident
born in February 1863 to Thomas and Ellen (Kelly) Flynn. His grandfather, also named
Thomas Flynn, was one of the original Rock Run settlers who arrived in 1836. The Flynn's,
along with a number of fellow Irishmen, settled in the southeast corner of the township in
an area that would come to be known as Irish Grove. The eldest Flynn bought 80 acres
from the U.S. Government in Section 25 of Rock Run Township in 1845 and 1847, and
another 80 acres in Section 36 in 1848.

T.J. married Sophia Wendt in 1889. Sophia was the fourth of five daughters born to Fred
and Elizabeth Wendt. Fred was a farmer and stone mason in Rock Run Township, about a
mile south of our house. T.J. and Sophia had three children, the oldest named  - what
else? - Thomas. Sometime after 1900, the Flynn's left Rock Run Township for what is now
the Chicago suburb of Lisle, where the 1910 U.S. Census listed T.J. as a farmer. Back then,
Du Page county probably looked not much different than most other counties in Illinois,
which were focused mainly on agriculture. Today, suburbia has taken over Du Page
County, and the Flynn's farm is now probably a mass of commercial or residential real
estate.

The 1910 census showed that T.J. owned his house in Lisle Township. Why the Flynn's
packed up and moved east is unknown, but they took the whole family. Eldest son
Thomas, who was called by his middle name, Everett, was 20 years old in 1910. Daughter
Hanora, who went by her middle name of Pearl, was 18. Youngest son Edward, who went
by his middle name of Emerson, was 16.

After his death in 1911, T.J. was buried in the Irish Grove Catholic Cemetery in Rock Run
Township. Shortly after, Sophia acquired a 180-acre farm about a mile north of Pearl City.
It's not clear how or why she purchased these acres, but both of her sons moved with her
and were listed in her household in the 1920 U.S. Census. In 1929, this farm was the site
the largest bootleg liquor still uncovered in Stephenson County up to that point. Everett
Flynn paid a hefty fine for his part of the alcohol manufacturing operation.

In July 1942, Sophia suffered a stroke and died on September 18, 1942. Sophia's obituary
was common to many we've seen during our research, in which the description of her life
didn't quite match up with what newspapers reported and U.S. Census enumerators
transcribed. The obituary said she was a lifelong resident of the Kent, Illinois community
near the farm she owned north of Pearl City. Obviously she made a few other stops in life
before settling there, including what appears to be a return to Rock Run Township in the
late-1920s and early-1930s. The 1930 U.S. Census appears to show her as a housekeeper
for Oscar Blackmore in Davis, Illinois. Blackmore had been declared an incompetent by the
court in 1929, and all of his substantial land holdings were sold in November of that year.
Sophia's connection to Oscar Blackmore may have been through his brother's wife, Mary
(Flynn) Blackmore. The year of son Everett's arrest for bootlegging also came around this
time, so maybe the Flynn's said goodbye to the Pearl City farm after the liquor raid.

George Funnell

On August 18, 1897, George Funnell purchased the 74 acres from T.J. Flynn for $1,480.
So Who Built Our House...and When?

The couple who sold us our property said the original part of the house was built in the 1880s. What we've seen in the basement would
certainly support this time period. However, if the house was constructed in that decade, we're pretty sure it wasn't the primary residence of
whoever built it. The three owners of that decade - Samuel Davis, Cronkrite/Stewart, and John Graham - already had homes elsewhere.  Samuel
Davis owned houses in the village of Davis and on his property at the corner of Eggert Road and Farm School Road. He probably wouldn't have
needed a third place to live. Cronkrite and Stewart were both well-established in Freeport, with Stewart already having his own country home
at his family's 360-acre farm west of Dakota. His farm is referred to several times over the years in the Freeport Daily Journal society pages, as
a sort of country retreat for family and friends. We know Cronkrite was a horse breeder, based on entries in the American Morgan Horse
Register. Would he have built a house on 160 acres so that he, too, could have a country retreat? Maybe.

If John Graham built our house, Margaret Graham’s
1922 obituary in the Freeport Journal-Standard suggests they never lived here. The
obituary states that during their marriage, the Graham’s lived for three years on a farm about 3 miles south of Rock City. This was probably on
land they owned at the corner of Eggert Road and Cedarville Road, shown in the 1871 plat map of Rock Run Township.  Around 1860 the
Graham’s moved into Rock City, where they stayed until 1871. They then moved to their 160-acre farm property adjacent to Rock City, also
shown in the 1871 plat map, and were there until John's death in 1897.

We're pretty sure there was a house here in 1894, since the Rock Run Township plat map from that year clearly shows a square dot on John
Graham's 74 acres. Those dots represented homes, so someone lived there, whether it was in today's house or an earlier residence. If
Cronkrite and Stewart built a house on the property, then John Graham had to have a reason to own land with a home on it. One theory is that
he bought it for one of his children, so they could farm the family land. That time period was when some of his sons would have become
adults. However, research on John Graham's children does not suggest any of them were farmers. By 1900, the U.S. Census shows only Henry
Graham and his brother, John Jr., living in Rock City. The rest of the Graham siblings had moved outside the township, although several were
still involved in the grain merchandising business and general store. The 1890 census records might have shed some light on who lived in our
house, but unfortunately most of the U.S. census data for that year was destroyed by fire.

John Graham did have a daughter who married a farmer in 1887, which could have been the reason he wanted to own a farm with house on it.
Sarah "Sadie" Graham was 27 years old when she married Charles A. Carnefix. According to a wedding announcement in the Freeport Daily
Journal, Charles Carnefix was a "prosperous farmer in Rock Run Township." He had graduated with a degree in civil engineering from the
University of Michigan in 1875. It’s possible that John Graham built our house for his daughter and son-in-law after they were married, so that
Charles could farm the Graham land.

Just two years after the marriage, however, Charles died. A 1913 bulletin published by the University of Michigan College of Engineering stated
that he died at Rock City on June 6, 1889 and was a teacher at that time. So was he a teacher or a farmer? Did he and Sarah plan to begin their
new life together in a new home on Farm School Road? We may never know.

Another theory is that the house was built specifically for tenant farmers. Typical leases were based on a crop share arrangement, where the
landowner and tenant share the costs of raising crops or livestock, and split the farm products. This arrangement was common well into the
20th century. In fact, the house in which I was raised was provided by a landowner who rented my father farm ground on a
50/50 crop share
basis. This type of lease was more of a business partnership between the landowner and the tenant, so providing a decent place for the tenant
to live helped the landowner entice a good farmer to work the land. The fact that all of the 1880s-era owners were probably well-off financially
may explain why the original part of the house is a bit nicer than common tenant farmer houses I've seen. Most homes built for farm tenants
didn't have basements or second-floor sitting rooms, as does the original part of our house.

Still, none of this information ties to a specific person or year in which the house was originally built. We researched the local newspapers for
reports of contractors building houses in the last two decades of the 19th century, but didn't find anything relevant to our property. Although
the previous owners we've talked to said the original part of the house was built in the 1880s, the house itself has revealed few clues to its
origination date. We were told that the first addition to the original house occurred in the 1890s, and thanks to a bedroom remodel project in
2014-15, we know the wall studs in that part of the house measure 1.75 x 3.75 inches. That was a bit of a surprise, since we often hear about
how homes of that period used studs that were a full 2x4 inches. We hope the final bedroom to be remodeled in the oldest part of the house
will give us a few more clues about the time of construction.

The other angle we explored was the prices each owner paid when they bought and sold the property. In theory, a large difference between the
price paid and the price sold would suggest that real estate fixtures were added during that period of ownership. Since the chain of ownership
was fairly long from the time the Cronkrite and Steward land was divided up, until David Welling sold the property to Franklin Hufford, we had
quite a few data points to look at.

The first evidence we analyzed was the Cronkrite/Stewart sale transactions. John Graham paid almost $30/acre for his 74 acres, compared to
$17.92/acre paid by Warren Dart and around $28/acre by Herman Bokhof. The Dart land, where most of the Espenscheid Woods forest
preserve is now located, was the roughest, most jagged piece of ground and rightly should have sold for the least money per acre. The Graham
land was also somewhat rough, with many trees, and even today would have only about 15 tillable acres. The Bokhof land was the only flat
piece of the 160 acres, and according to the 1871 plat map, had little or no trees. If crop farming was the highest and best use for farm real
estate in the 1880s, then the Bokhof land should have been the most valuable on a per-acre basis. However, the Graham land fetched the
highest price per acre, possibly because it was the only tract with buildings.

But then an unusual thing happened. John Graham took a large loss on his 74 acres when he sold to T.J. Flynn in 1896. What is odd about this
loss is that farm real estate prices in Illinois were on a rising trend in the 1890s. Why Graham parted with the land for less than two-thirds of
what he paid for it is unclear. One possibility is we misinterpreted how Cronkrite and Stewart divided their 160 acres, and Graham actually
ended up with more than 74 acres. However, the legal descriptions seem to tie out to what the 1894 plat map shows. Another theory is that
the economic Panic of 1896 affected Graham in a way that required him to quickly raise liquidity. Even though panics, recessions and
depressions didn't always affect rural areas to the same extent as the rest of the population, John Graham was a merchant who probably had
ties to Chicago and other urban areas. Credit availability is often the first thing to contract when an economy weakens, so maybe he needed to
sell some assets to support his business.

We also know that John Graham was nearing the end of his life. Whether he realized this in 1896, we'll never know, but maybe he was trying
to do some estate planning for his large family. The real insight to the sale to Flynn, as well as the next two sales of the property over the
following 3 years, is what at first glance appears to be a windfall for Sam Warn. His return would have been about 12% annually for an 8.5-year
investment. When I first did the math on Sam's investment return, it seemed unlikely that the value of his property could have increased by
2.67 times without some significant capital improvements. In fact, an argument could be made that Sam Warn was the man who built the
house to begin with, for how else could a person add $3,000 in value to the property during that time frame?

But upon further review of historical farm real estate prices, the period between 1900 and 1920 was a boom for agricultural land values. The
USDA's Census of Agriculture in 1920 was an eye-opening look at real estate trends going all the way back to 1850. In Illinois, farm real estate
values increased by about 40% in the decade of the 1890s, and then roughly doubled between 1900 and 1910. So if John Graham's $2,200
purchase of the 74 acres in 1886 represented the baseline for Illinois land values, then Frank Hufford's $5,550 purchase in 1909 doesn't seem
out of line - with or without buildings on the property.

So...we still don't know who built our house.
Above: When Sam Warn moved to California, this is the street he loved on in 1930, in the Watts section of Los Angeles. As it looked around 2013, this
neighborhood probably wouldn't have been his first choice. Sam may have followed his son Charles to California. Charles was listed in the 1920 U.S.
Census as living about a mile southwest of the University of Southern California campus. He was a veterinarian, who later became the head of the Los
Angeles city humane department. Even Sam's first wife, Ida, moved to the Los Angeles area later in her life, to live with her daughter, Jessie (Warn)
Folkrod. Ida was listed in the 1940 U.S. Census as "Idabell Warn", aged 71 years and mother-in-law of George Folkrod. Ida and the Folkrods lived in the
Inglewood section of the city.
George was born in Barcomb, England on September 14, 1842. As a youth, he moved to the United States in 1854. After settling in Elgin,
Illinois, both of his parents died, leaving George and his brother James as orphans. George came to Pecatonica, Illinois in 1861 and at some
point learned the butchering trade. He married Armitta Abbott of Wayne, Illinois in 1867. They lived for some time in Ridott  Township in
Stephenson County, before moving to the Pecatonica area

The 1900 U.S. Census shows George living in Pecatonica with his wife and youngest son Frank. He lived on a farm near Pecatonica and called
himself a butcher and stock breeder. He may have owned and operated a meat market with his son Fred, who was also listed as a butcher in
the 1900 census. George appeared in the February 1881 edition of the American Shorthorn Herd Book as co-owner of a bull named Sonsie's
Duke.

We know little else about George Funnell or his connection to T.J. Flynn. Why he, like Flynn, owned the property for such a short time remains
a mystery. What we do know is that from the 1890s through the 1920s, farmland values were on the rise. It's possible that both Flynn and
Funnell saw their purchases as short-term investments, and they cashed out as soon as they could sell for a reasonable profit.

George died on August 14, 1904 and is buried in the Pecatonica Cemetery. His wife died in 1920, and is also buried in the Pecatonica
Cemetery.

Samuel Warn

On July 17, 1899, George Funnell sold the 74-acre property to Samuel B. Warn for $1,800. Sam Warn was born in 1860 and lived for several
years in the Davis and Rock City areas. The 1900 census shows him as Samuel
Warren, living on a farm he owned in Rock Run Township. His
occupation was listed as "Farmer", which suggests he and his family were living in our house. Although he did own other acreage in Rock Run
Township a few miles south of our property, none of the old plat maps show a house on those acres. He married his wife, Ida, at the tender
age of 17. They had two sons and a daughter.

According to former owner
Brian Barnes, the kitchen and back porch were added during the Warn's ownership in 1904 and 1906, respectively.

By 1905, the Warn's were no longer living on the farm. In September of that year, Sam bought a house in Davis from Robert J. Long. The
November 2, 1905 edition of the Freeport Daily Journal society pages reported that Sam was moving into "rooms over J.S. Afflerbaugh's
store" in Davis. The next month, the newspaper reported that Sam's moving day had arrived, and that a man named Bert Snook had moved
onto the Warn farm. We assume this was the 74-acre property, and Bert Snook was renting it for the 1906 season. Evidently, the Warn's time
in our house was relatively brief.

In January 1908, Sam Warn sold our property to David Welling. The next month, he sold his other farm land in Sections 2 and 3 of Rock Run
Township to T.J. Flynn. Sam's ties to country life were apparently over. By March of 1908, he had moved into a house on Main Street in Rock
City. The next month, he was in the process of adding onto the house, possibly turning it into a boarding house that would later be run by Ida
Warn.

We suspect a divorce may have prompted the sales of his farm properties, and he probably left Rock Run Township (and his wife) around the
time he sold his land. The 1910 U.S. Census shows Ida Warn living as head of household in Rock City with her teenage daughter, Jessie. Her
occupation was "Keeper of Boarding House." Sam Warn did not appear in the 1910 census for Rock Run township, or any other location that
we could find. His second wife, Minnie, was 19 years old when she married Sam, which suggests their matrimony began in 1907 or 1908,
when Sam would have been in his 40s.

The 1920 U.S. Census shows Sam living in the Freeport area (Lancaster Township) with Minnie, who was 22 years younger. His occupation was
listed as carpenter, and they had no children at that time. His 1933 obituary stated that he had operated a store in Freeport called Basement
Bargain.

In January 1928, Minnie filed for divorce on account of drunkenness. She was granted the divorce in September 1928. Evidently Minnie either
didn't follow through with the divorce, or else she continued living with Sam afterwards. A daughter, June, was born about the same time the
divorce proceedings began. His 1933 obituary mentions a wife and baby who moved with him to California in July 1928, and the 1930 U.S.
Census has him living in Los Angeles with Minnie (his wife, according to the census) and his 2-year-old daughter.
Above: T.J. Flynn's son, Everett, was a bootlegger in
the 1920s. This article appeared in the September 18,
1929 edition of the Freeport Journal-Standard. Everett
Flynn's record fine would be eclipsed by his
accomplice Paul Santos, who pled not guilty and lost
his case in court three months later. His fine was
$1,300 and he was sentenced to 3 months in jail.
Above: Former Davis-area resident Dan Buck provided this photo of an early bridge over Rock Run Creek near our house. The photo appears to have been
taken directly across the road from our house, looking east. We don't know the year in which this photo originated, but a bridge was
constructed here in
1905 by the W.H. Shons Bridge Company. Iron-constructed bridges like this one are often traced back to this period, based on those documented on
bridgehunter.com in Stephenson County.

We believe this bridge is one of at least 3 constructed at this location over the years - and possibly the first. As was common in those days, the bridge
was built perpendicular to the creek, causing the road to change direction. The photo shows the bridge angled to the north, causing the road to bend
markedly on the east side. Later bridges would cross the creek at an angle and eliminate the bend. A survey of our property shows an older center line of
Farm School Road in a different location than it is today (see below).

The bridge above was damaged in 1916, after heavy rains in March of that year caused severe flooding. On March 29th, the Freeport Journal-Standard
reported that the Pecatonica River rose at least a foot higher than its previous record at Freeport. The following month, the County Supervisor of
Highways inspected what was then referred to as the Hufford Bridge, and bids were gathered for its repair. In
June of 1916, W. H. Shons won the bid to
beef up the 115-foot span. A permanent abutment was added, as well as a concrete wing, which would be designed to carry a new steel or concrete
span in the future.

A former owner of our house,
Brian Barnes, sent us a picture of a flood in 1996, which swelled Rock Run Creek to about 500 feet wide. "It washed out all
the new pasture fence," Brian said, "as well as left a pile of rocks 50 feet across, 5 feet high from the bridge south a tenth of a mile." A flood of that
magnitude in 1916 would probably have tested the capacity of the Farm School Road bridge.

An
aerial photo from 1939 shows what seems to be a straighter road than what appears in the background of this photo, so at some point after it's likely
that at least some of the bend was removed with the 1905 bridge. The current bridge was
constructed in 1984 and crosses the creek at a 25-degree
angle. Farm School Road is relatively straight on both sides of the bridge.

Below: Survey of our property. At the top of the survey is a notation of the "former center line of road". This was probably from when Farm School Road
angled to meet the bridge, as shown in the above photo.
An 1894 plat map shows our house on the property purchased by John Graham, who was a native of Pennsylvania. He came to Rock Run
Township in 1842 and began farming, but eventually gave that up to own a general store in Rock City. His business pursuits evolved into the
Graham Brothers Company, which included a general store and grain elevator in Rock City, as well as grain elevators in Dakota, Durand,
Florence and Nora. U.S. Postal records indicate that both John Graham and his son Henry were Postmasters of the Rock City post office. John
was appointed Postmaster in 1891 and Henry in 1902.

John Graham married Margaret Ann Young, also a Pennsylvania native, in 1857. They had 11 children, 10 of who were alive and living with
John and Margaret as of the 1880 U.S. Census (their son Robert died in 1867). John died on February 23, 1897 at the age of 72. Shortly after he
died, Margaret moved to Freeport, where she lived until her death in 1922.
Maybe moving to Los Angeles with a new baby was a
fresh start for the Warn's, although when he was
enumerated in April 1930, Sam was unemployed, a
month shy of his 67th birthday, and living in the Watts
section of the city.

Sam's three children from his first marriage all ventured
to the Los Angeles area. Eldest son Charles appears to
have been the first to move to California. He became a
veterinarian and headed the Los Angeles city humane
department in the 1930s. His claim to fame was putting
an end to a Hollywood research chemist's experiment
with freezing monkeys and attempting to bring them
back to life. In August 1936, Dr. Ralph S. Willard had
already frozen one monkey and claimed to have
brought it back to life. When he tried reviving a second
frozen monkey on August 20th, Dr. Warn invoked
California law, which stated that animal experiments
could not be conducted outside a state-accredited
university laboratory. In this case, the law won and the
experiment ended immediately.
Above: Sam's son William left his mark in the basement with this quote: "When this you
see remember me". His name is written on the wood beam, just out of sight near the
foundation wall.