In 1991, Brian and Elizabeth Barnes purchased the house and about 27 acres of what had been the original 74-
acre property. By this time, the land had been divided into about four pieces, including 5 acres on which the
house sits, 6 acres where the Stavers built their new home, 22 acres of pasture, and about 40 acres through
which most of Rock Run Creek passes through.
Brian and Liz were in their mid-30’s when they bought the property, and probably at a stage in their lives when
they were ready to take on a fixer-upper. According to Brian, the house was in sad shape when they purchased
it. The Barnes’ added the box-style landscaping around most of the house and built the east deck to replace the
old concrete stairs to the back porch.
The Barnes’ lived in our house through most of the 1990s, which included some of the years Brian worked at
Ingersoll Machine Milling Company in Rockford. According to his LinkedIn profile, Brian held several positions
in the company between 1996 and 2011. Brian followed his father’s path to Ingersoll, where Allen Barnes had
worked for 34 years.
In 2001, Brian followed a former Ingersoll colleague to Ferguson Machine Company in St. Louis. The Barnes’ put
their house up for sale and moved to Troy, Missouri. At the time, Ferguson was a business unit of Crane Co., a
diversified manufacturer of industrial products. In the same year Brian joined the company, Ferguson Company
was merged into a joint venture between Crane Co. and Emerson Electric Co. Almost as soon as he arrived,
Brian found himself out of a job. Real estate records show that Brian and Liz owned a home in Troy for all of
four months. Fortunately for the Barnes’, Brian was able to rejoin Ingersoll in Rockford. They moved back to
Stephenson County and lived for the next 10 years in a country home near Orangeville, then headed west to
the Spokane, Washington area.
|Just before the Barnes' sold the property, their sale
flier showed how our house appeared during the
winter of 2000-01. This view is looking west. Note the
2-car garage where the 2004 addition was built. The
large tree was cut down about the same time as the
|Another sale flier view of the north side of the
house, before the handicap-accessible
"bridge" was built from the front porch to the
|Brian Barnes shared these photos of the house, showing the east side entrance before the deck was
added and the view from Farm School Road. Based on photos from vintageaerial.com, the flat-roof
garage was added sometime between 1964 and 1968 by the Mullicans. The white fence came
between 1974 and 1979.