Who’s Afraid of Thomas Wolfe?

My Mom moved out of my boyhood home 20 years ago. I loved that house and to some degree it will always be home to me.

While one can debate whether or not the 20 years that have passed have been kind to me, there is no doubt that it has not been kind to that boyhood home. If that house were an animal, the owners would be prosecuted for neglect.

There was a time when I would even avoid driving down the street where that house sits. Just the look of it falling deeper and deeper into a decrepit state would cause waves of anger to come crashing to the surface.

Then a couple years back, I heard through the grapevine that the house had been condemned. Anger turned to sadness. While I still avoid that street, it is a different emotion that cause the boycott.

The grapevine wasn’t 100% accurate though. While the house feels like it is a good blast of wind away from falling over, it isn’t exactly condemned. It isn’t fit for living, but it isn’t condemned either. In fact, it recently was put back on the market with an asking price of $15,000.

I recently toured the house with my Aunt Linda and took a few pictures of what it has become:


Boyhood Home
The upstairs bathroom.

Boyhood Home
My old bedroom.

Boyhood Home
I would still gladly take this tub off their hands.

Boyhood Home
Carla’s old bedroom.

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home
The den.

Boyhood Home
The living room.

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home
The old darkroom.

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home
Basement shower.

Boyhood Home
My model railroad track used to sit there.

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home
Living room.

Boyhood Home
I believe Grandpa Bennett put up that thermometer.

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home
Garage is cleaner than the inside of the house.

Boyhood Home
No window though.

Boyhood Home
That poor owl thermometer.

Boyhood Home
I wish I could say that my old hoop was about to fall over because of my numerous thundering dunks.

Boyhood Home

Carla, Teresa, and Mom had all toured the old stomping grounds at some point, but this was my first time in the place. I was shocked to see that all the carpet and paint was the same as when Mom moved out. Okay, shocked might be overstating it.

I’m glad that the old place isn’t being torn down, but at the same time, I won’t be driving down that street anytime soon.

6 thoughts on “Who’s Afraid of Thomas Wolfe?”

  1. That’s such a shame; it was such a lovely house. I can only imagine if Quietus were filmed there now – a new dimension of terror would be there.

  2. Angie,

    Maybe Quietus is what doomed that house to oblivion.

    Elizabeth,

    It is a sad owl. I thought about snagging that owl thermometer, but last year I snagged the thermometer that was on the garage and that one now hangs on the side of my garage.

    I think there is a fair chance that me and my friends were problem the ones that broke the glass on the owl thermometer though.

    Jen,

    It is sad. It also has actually already been purchased. I hope the person that bought it paid no more than $5,000 for it. By my humble estimation this is the minimum that will need to be done:

    All walls torn down to studs.
    Several windows replaced.
    Much of the floor replaced.
    Roof replaced.
    Foundation issues addressed.
    Garage torn down.
    Front porch replaced or at least torn down.
    Soft spots in the upstairs floor strengthened.
    Ceilings replaced.
    Siding probably replaced.
    Perhaps just set fire to the kitchen.

    Plus the amount of cleaning that would still need to be done.

  3. I missed putting a bid in on 415 Greene Street but I’m very grateful to Becky, a local realtor, who got permission for me and Chris to look at the house. It hurt to see the condition of a house that was once a lovely home to my family. As I stood looking at each room, so many memories flooded my mind. I hope whoever bought the house will see the potential and repair it.

    Thank you Becky for being patient with Chris and me. I’m keeping your business card just in case….

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