One of the things that has plagued me since we moved was not being able to find out much on the history of our house. I've searched online, the newspaper articles at the library, asked around town, etc., but no one knew much about it before the 1940s.
I was at an auction on Monday here in town and one of the items up for bid was a centennial book. It is a pretty detailed account of the town's first 100 year history, almost from the day the first settlers arrived in Adrian.
I bid on the book and won it for $4. I immediately started scanning it for any mention of A. M. Becker, the man who built our house. I found him on page 5 and realized he was a pretty big deal in the settling of Adrian. He had a large mercantile and expanded it several times in the first few years. He was also known as one of the wealthiest men in Nobles County.
But then I hit the jackpot! While I was reading about another expansion he made on the store in 1885, there was one sentenced tucked in there that was the key I had been looking for for over a year!
"In 1885, he also built a beautiful home on Church Street (6th street used to be called Church) costing $6,500."
I almost fell out of my chair and now have an even deeper appreciation for the history of this house and a desire to restore it so that it will be around another 123 years! Now if only I could find a picture...