The Rogers County Historical Society has presented the Fall Home Tour to area residents since 1982. Funds from the tour have been used for many civic restoration projects including the Belvidere Mansion, recipient for the last three tours. The front turret windows of the Belvidere, many of which were broken and leaking, needed replacing.
Proceeds from the Oct. 12 tour will be used to help pay for the windows.
More than a fundraiser, the primary purpose of the Old Home Tour is to encourage homeowners to purchase and renovate, rather than demolish and rebuild.
“So many of these beautiful old homes are not only just architecturally interesting, but they may have had a prominent citizen who once lived there,” said Morgan Anderssen Williams of the Rogers County Historical Society.
She said some people may be reluctant to show their home until it is completely redone but showing a home in progress is also important.
“You can fully appreciate just how much work and love goes into updating these houses, even if the restoration isn’t complete. Sometime it’s interesting just to see the ‘bones’ of an old house. Materials used 100 years ago were much different than today and sometime old wallpapers and paint colors are uncovered.”
This is is the perfect chance for people trying to sell an old home to show it off to the kind of people who are interested in and appreciate these “gems,” said Anderssen.
Tickets and maps are available in advance at the Belvidere Mansion Gift Shop and can be toured in any order. For the first time in years, all of the tour homes and attractions are within walking distance of each other.
Children 12 and under are free with a paid adult. Tickets are $12 and include entry to all homes, which will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Lunch will be available in the Belvidere Tea Room.
Participants are also invited to take a peek inside the new Claremore Museum of History (former Will Rogers Library). The museum will be open from 12-4 p.m on tour day.