Owners to restore historic house

Published 12:00 am Friday, April 18, 2003

CENTREVILLE &045; John Chapman and Jacquie Hope are making the best out of a bad situation.

Following a fire that destroyed much of their historic Centreville House in January, the couple is considering ways to restore a portion of the 19th-century boarding house.

&uot;On the back section we’re going to try to do something for the town &045; maybe a meeting hall or something like that,&uot; Chapman said. He said they are exploring several grant opportunities to help with the venture.

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The two-story building first served as a railway hotel and later as a boarding house for wives of soldiers who were stationed at Centreville’s Camp Van Dorn during World War II.

&uot;We’ll just have to work through it. It’s going to cost about $20,000 to rebuild that back section,&uot; he said.

A work crew was at the site Thursday loading a dumpster with charred shingles and salvaging heart pine planks that survived the fire to sell for flooring.

An abundance of square-headed nails lay in the rubble of the 1888 structure.

&uot;We found we could not rebuild the house for what we had it insured for.

We had it way under-insured,&uot; Chapman said. Chapman said he has now fully recovered from burns he suffered on his nose trying to fight the Jan. 13 blaze.

And the couple has recovered nicely since the fire, acquiring another old two-story home on St. Mary Street in Centreville.

&uot;We hope to open another bed and breakfast there this summer,&uot; Chapman said.