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The Jeremiah Cronin, Jr. House is a residence in Marshall, Michigan.  The house was constructed in 1872 for Marshall merchant Jeremiah Cronin. Jr., and his wife, Susan.

History

Local contractor Frederick N. Church constructed this house as well as Cronin's 1869 Michigan Avenue commercial block. On September 5, 1872, the Calhoun County Patriot and Democratic Expounder predicted that the house would be the "most stylish" in the city. The Italian villa reflects the Cronin family's standing in the community.

"It's set up on a hill with lots of old elm trees around it, sweeping drive, and a few oval windows that look like eyes peering out," says former Marshall resident Bryndis Rubin, who toured the house as a child for a school project. She notes that many people who grew up in the area during the 1970s associate the house with Bellairs and his books. "It's on such a large piece of property that it looks like a Disney Haunted Mansion. And who doesn't like a haunted house?"

Cronin Sisters

Virginia (left) and Elizabeth Cronin.

Sisters Elizabeth L. (1906-1989) and Mary Virginia (1904-2002) Cronin, grand-daughters of Jeremiah Jr., lived in the house for many years, eventually becoming more reclusive as they got older, which in turn probably added to the house's mystique. Following the death of Virginia Cronin the house was put up for sale and many items belonging to the Cronin family were put up for auction. The house eventually was sold to another family - only the second family to own the house in over 125 years.

In 1992 the house was named a Michigan Historical Landmark with a double-sided plaque erected, one side for the house itself, the other side for John Bellairs[1].

Both the house and the book still serve as an inspiration: in 2005, volunteers helped construct Kid’s Kingdom in Marshall’s Ketchum Park where children of all ages can run through a "village" that replicates some of that city’s finest architecture, including the Brooks Fountain and Cronin House. In 2008, the house featured prominently in an outdoor mural dedicated to Bellairs painted by Massachusetts-based artist Sheila Foley; the mural is on display in downtown Haverhill.

Bellairs Corpus

Gallery

Historical markers

External links

References

  1. "Jeremiah Cronin. Jr. House / John Bellairs". MichMarkers.com.

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