The house on Railroad Street near Main Street in downtown hasn’t changed much since it was built sometime in the 1800s.
The exterior of the home, which once was whitewashed, has been painted. That’s about the extent of the changes, and the wall separating two rooms has been torn down, said the house’s owners, Thomas and Gail Leggett.
While the name of the person who built the house was unknown, the Leggetts said that Thomas’ uncle, Jim Leggett, once lived there. In the late 1980s, the Leggetts bought the house from Bill Hathcock.
“Tommy’s always lived in Hiram,” Gail Leggett said. “It’s in his heart, is.”
When the Leggetts first owned the house, it was used for Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, and it was the AA leaders who tore down the wall, creating one big room in the front of the house where they could hold their meetings. Now, it houses Cherokee Rose Cottage, an antique store run by Sandra Taylor. Thomas Leggett said that Taylor didn’t want anything changed in the building when she began leasing it last year.
“[She] didn’t want anything done to it,” Leggett said. “[She said] that’s what I want, an old-looking house to sell old [things].”
Taylor said she loves older buildings and items, knowing there’s a history behind them. Her house was built in 1897.
“I’m attracted to oldness,” she said. “Between my house and this house, there’s no insulation in the walls, and the footers are boulders. But you still stay hot and cool. People took pride in what they did.”
Besides the front room, the house has a kitchen and bathroom, and it boasts its original floors and ceilings, the latter of which are close to 10 feet high.
A few years after purchasing the house, the Leggetts in 1991 bought an old, dilapidated store, ; and the old depot, .
“We just wanted to quit renting buildings and own them,” Thomas Leggett said.
In 1994, city officials gave the couple a certificate of recognition for downtown preservation.
“That right there I’m really proud of,” Gail Leggett said.