Historic farmhouse in danger

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Cotton-Ropke HouseThe Historic Landmarks Foundation of Indiana is racing to save the Cotton-Ropkey House at 79th Street and Marsh Road just west of I-465. The owner of the property, Kite Realty Group, applied for a demolition permit after no one took it up on an offer to sell the house for $1 in exchange for moving it. But the local developer has agreed to give the foundation a little more time to find a way to save the home, which was completed in 1850 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The foundation is looking at a nearby site where it could move the house, said Marsh Davis, the group’s president. If they can get the home moved, they would fix it up, place covenants and resell it. The home’s façade displays characteristics of Greek Revival and Italianate styles, and a staircase features ash treads and a cherry railing. Farmer John Cotton began building the home in 1848 and it stayed in the family until 1937, when the Ropkey family bought it. They owned it until 2004 when Kite bought the 95-acre farm for development. (Photo: L. Mark Finch)

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