The History Behind 501 N Capitol Avenue...
Our home sits on the very ground where the constitution of Indiana was written. Where our home now sits, in 1816 a log cabin stood that served as the Indiana Territory capitol building and the Harrison County Courthouse - the "Courthouse on the Hill". It was at that cabin that representatives from around the state met and penned the Indiana Constitution in June of 1816. History shows that the summer sun and heat became such that the men walked down the hill to the west - less than 100 feet - and sat beneath the shade of a huge sprawling elm tree to get relief and eventually sign the constitutional document. The elm was soon know as "The Constitutional Elm". The trunk of the old elm is preserved today in a sandstone monument just down the sidewalk from our house.
There have been several homeowners before us in this house, which was built in 1916. They were wonderful stewards of the home and its property. Arvil Weilbaker and family had the wonderful limestone marker created and placed at the corner of the property to signify the importance of this little hill on which our house stands. Mr. Weilbaker was quite proud of the history of the property, and paid for the project on his own. He was indeed a very proud Hoosier. Linda Toupin was the owner prior to us and she invested so much loved into the home and the property. We can't thank her enough for all that she did to breath new life into it.
And in its latest life, my husband Jeff and I decided to open our home for tea party events where we combine our love of entertaining and hosting with themed tea parties. We host a few themed events in addition to private parties a few times a month in our home aka The Old Capitol Tea Room.
The home in which you are visiting is one of Corydon’s grand historic homes. This 105-year-old home sits on the site of the 1st Harrison County Courthouse, which was later used jointly as the Indiana territorial Capitol building. The buildings on the property of the site were then deeded to Dennis Pennington, a lauded founding father of Indiana’s statehood, in late 1816 as partial payment for his work on the construction of the “Stone Courthouse” which still sits on the east side of the Corydon town square.
Pennington sold the property in 1817 to local merchants, Wilson & Bayless. In 1847 the property was sold again to the Jordan family. The property remained in the Jordan family for over 60 years. Victor Bulleit bought the property in 1911 for $3,000. Bulleit then sold the property to William Huff five years later, and the current three story home with the red-tile roof was constructed in 1916.
Over the last 100 years the property has changed hands several times with various owners and updates to the property. The home was completely renovated between 2006 and 2010 by David and Linda Toupin. It was then sold to Jeff and Carrie Ketterman in 2013, a home that Jeff has long admired as a life-long Harrison County resident. Jeff is also a descendant of Dennis Pennington through his late grandmother, June (Davis) Flock. So, now the home has come full circle, and he and Carrie couldn’t be more delighted with their beautiful, century-old historic home.