FISI – Bad News on Arkansas

You know it’s going to be a bad day if your front door looks like this:

Such is the case at 108/110 Arkansas. Owned by Mary Arnott Wagner, whose mailing address is listed as Minnetonka Minnesota, the ‘Condemned’ posting is dated July of 2006. With a purchase date of July 1996, I believe she may have thrown in the towel on this property, as it’s over $3000 behind on taxes.  I originally planned on this FISI as a little reminder to the City, but it seems that they’ve been by fairly recently, as the page that’s curled over is dated 5/28/08.

A second-story garden?

Not secured, and definitely not safe. This is not fair to the neighbors next-door (Ridgeview Management LLC), whose well-kept house looks like this:

And the folks (David Volak) across the street keep their property like this:


I’ll have to get by and see what the recent notice says, but it’s probably safe to say it’s not good news. Thanks again to Buster’s Momma for getting these for me. And more thanks to the folks who’ve sent me an email concerning the FISI series. I know there’s no one that wants to have dilapidated properties abutting theirs, as I know I certainly wouldn’t want to. If we put them out there, the City will see and take action.

As always, if you see a candidate, good or bad that you think would qualify, drop me a note here. You can be anonymous if you so choose, or I can thank you here for your help.

See you at the International!!

(All real estate information referenced at as of June 25, 2008)


19 thoughts on “FISI – Bad News on Arkansas

  1. Look at the slate roof, the turret room.the amount of windows , the federal window caps the pillared front porch, the details my heart aches as to what this house once was ….how proud the original owners must have been the day they moved in……the romantic in me wonders who they were, how they contributed to what is now Lorain – all that is left “shame” in an uncaring community of property owners among the ranks with Mary Arnott Wagner….. I am so angry when I see this ….. because this house must have been beautiful….in the minds eye I see a childs face looking out of the turret windows pondering their future… laughter on a summers evening .lemonade on the porch.a housewife taking pride in how her windows reflected the evening sunset…. and now ……………

  2. I’m pretty sure Mary Wagner is dead. I know her husband is. I suppose one of their sons could have married someone named Mary and put the house in her name.

    It was nice inside when I lived in the 1st floor apartment in the 60’s.

  3. It looks like it was a lovely home at one time..and if Ms. Wagner has passed on then surely her estate is responsible….. there is no excuse for this home and the others like it to have had 2 years of notifications and those notifications from the city obviously being ignored. But then we HAVE to enforce our own ordinances in my opinion… and we have not been doing that.

  4. Loraine,
    I love these big old houses too! Reading your post, I can visualize what you’re describing. I went back past the place today & grabbed some shots of the leaded glass windows on the north side of the house & some other stuff. There are 2 other leaded glass windows on the south side of the house, but it was hard to capture the one on the 2nd floor. The south ones look like they’ve undergone extensive repairs over time. What this house has become is truly shameful. If you like this house, wait until you see what I found on Lexington Avenue.
    Being our resident historian 😉 do you know if anybody has ever researched the history of the East Side like you’ve done with Charleston Village?

    Kaye ~ do you have any pictures of the Arkansas house from when you lived there?

    H ~ I got a shot of the notice for you.

  5. Hi Buster’s Mom I have become knowledgeable of this area due to circumstances beyond my control 🙂 Black River Historical Society is a wonderful asset and has a plethora of information ….I would ask them they would know probably of anyone who has researched the East side ……..

  6. I will definitely check with them. Helping Henery has brought many things to my attention that warrant further investigation and may lead to some interesting discoveries. I seem to be drawn to these 1900 houses and I know they have many stories to tell. The hubby says I’m only drawn to them because those are the ones that are falling apart, but I think it’s the romantic side of me that those houses call out to.

  7. I believe the Gilberts own a home just to the north of this home and have commented to me about it’s state over a year ago.

    Any more pieces of paper stuck to the front of the home we’ll have to charge them for wallpapering.

    Here is me noticing the dumb stuff again. The folks next to Volaks have a concrete driveway with a gravel apron. That just isn’t right and I bet a lot of the problems that are pictured in the street are causes by the apron.

  8. You are right, Brian, the house to the north of this house is also well cared for. I should have given them props, too. Henery, I’ll be going back by there to get pictures of the other houses in the neighborhood. Anything else I should look for while I’m there?

  9. Nope.

    I featured the Volak residence once before, as they have the anchor in the driveway.

    If there’s a mix of houses over there, get what you can.

    And Thank you once again!

  10. As always, H, you are most welcome! Got ’em all now!
    I don’t know why more people don’t want to participate in the great FISI search. I am really enjoying helping you and our city!

  11. I do have some photos somewhere. Most are of the inside. I’ll see if I can find them – it’s been a long time. I only have photos of the downstairs – none of the upstairs apartment, but that was nice too.

  12. Henrey,
    I walked past the “worse” home on my way back from the festival and noticed that i9t appears there are squatters or someone inside the home.

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