One of the most striking homes in Indian Village is located at 1075 Burns. The current owner filled us in on the rich history surrounding this stone house, which is now up for sale for $650,000.
The house was originally built in 1890 and sat at Jefferson and Jos Campau. The owner, Walter Russel, an engineer and owner of Russel Wheel & Foundry, designed the house. Several doorknobs around the house are shaped as wheels as a reminder of his source of wealth, and the iron work and port cochere decorating the exterior have been claimed to be made in his foundry. In 1920-21, the house was disassembeled, carefully numbered, and rebuilt in reverse.
When rebuilt, the Russels took advantage of the construction to make a few tweaks to the interior, but the exterior became a mirror image.
In 1979, the house suffered a fire that destroyed the third floor and caused water damage throughout. Each of the three subsequent owners have taken on major restoration projects to get the house to its current state.
The ghost of Walter Russel is rumored to haunt the house. Workers in the 1980s reported strange happenings and were unwilling to work on the home after dark, but the current family in residence believes Walter to be a friendly presence who leaves behind random screws and nails. His picture hangs in the front hall.
The house is 6,000 square feet (including the third floor), with five bedrooms, five and a half baths, a cozy study with a barrel ceiling, and six working fireplaces. For an older house, it does have a fairly open layout. The realtor is Tom Ball at Real Estate One (313-565-3200 or firstname.lastname@example.org).
[Full disclosure: Curbed Detroit Editor Robin Runyan is an acquaintance of the current owner.]
- 1075 Burns [Redfin]