Preservation and Celebration of the Parker Family History & Genealogy
martin%20van%20buren%20parker%20house.jpeg Hi guys. I joined this site because I live in the Martin Van Buren Parker home in Olathe, Ks. We have done some research about the home, since purchasing it in 2010. It had gone into a foreclosure situation, and my husband and I are realtors in the KC area. We had lived in and renovated a home built in 1892 in Leavenworth, prior to the recession starting, but we sold it after the renovations were complete, due to gas prices, and the over 100 mile a day commute for both my husband and I to our offices in Overland Park, Ks. When the MVBP home sat vacated and came up for sale, we made a play on it, and were able to purchase it from the bank in New York that owned it. We began repairs on the home in December 2010, and have continued them, room by room, piece by piece, since then. We did updates to the plumbing, some electrical, and much of the décor, but kept it historically appropriate in every way. We had the exterior painted in summer 2012. The home retains many of the original elements that MVBP built in it- the transoms, stained and leaded glass windows, the granite faced fireplaces, the mouldings, and even a few of the chandeliers. The original garage, added by the Van Buren Parker sisters that all resided here at some point in the 1900's, still stands as well. We know that Zula Van Buren Parker(one of the twins), the last surviving daughter of Martin an
d Emma, sold the home in 1960 at the age of 90. After that in the 1960's and 1970's, the home sat vacant for some time, until in 1981, a man named Forrest Miles bought the home and saved it from being razed. He and his family spent about 20 years living here and updating. When we purchased it in 2010, the home needed cosmetic rehab, but it is still in remarkable shape for its age(144 years old). We are aware of some of the additions and changes that the MVBP sisters made over the 100 years that they owned the Victorian. They added a kitchen to the South of the original dining room, and made the original kitchen into a pantry. They also added a laundry room to the main level of the home. They added a main level bedroom and full bath to the East side of the home, off of the original women's parlor. The original maids quarters, located on the far South West end of the home were converted into a 2 section, walk in closet. The original nursery, located off of the upstairs master bedroom(Martin and Emma Van Buren Parker had 5 girls in the home, 4 of which were born here) was converted to a large master bath with walk in closet. The home sits on just over 1 acre in Olathe, Ks., a few blocks from downtown and the Johnson County Courthouse. The house is, and will always be, a work in progress, but we do believe that the Parkers would be pleased with the renovations that have been done here. It amazes so many people that visit us here that the home can be so solid and regal after standing for 144 years. "She's" seen a lot. We are proud to own the Martin Van Buren Parker house, we are fascinated with it's unique history, and hope to be able to aide in the home's continued survival for many years to come.