Nincehelser House

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William J. Nincehelser moved to Jefferson County from Ohio about 1880, married Minnie Wendorff, and rnmoved into this house in Oskaloosa. Mr. Nincehelser had a livery stable on the square and operated a rnhack service to take passengers between the two train depots located about a mile outside town. He was rnalso a coal dealer. The Nincehelsers had four daughters, all of whom attended Oskaloosa Public Schools, rngraduated from Emporia State University and became school teachers in Jefferson County. Only one of rnthe girls married. The others lived their entire lives in this house. William died in 1939 and Minnie died in
rn1947.

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The house and most ofits contents were inherited by the JeffersonCounty HistoricalSociety from the estate of Nell Nincehelser, a life-long resident of Jefferson County. Several gifts were also received from Maud Nincehelser Thompson before her death in 1984. Many of the watercolor paintings displayed in the house were done by the Nincehelser daughters. Their art teacher was Alice Worswick of Oskaloosa, who also taught John Steuart Curry.

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The house was moved to Old Jefferson Town in 1980 from its location on the 500 block of Cherokee rnStreet in Oskaloosa. It was opened to the public in May of 1981. In restoring the house and contents, rnperiod furnishings that came with the house were used, and more modern furnishings were replaced with rndonated and purchased pieces representing the years from the early 1900s through World War I. The rncurtains and shades throughout the house were replaced, but the lamps, vases, pictures and other rnmiscellaneous memorabilia came with the house. The ceiling fixtures, door knobs, radiators, etc., are all rnoriginal. In the dining room, everything except rn the tea cart belonged to the rn Nincehelsers. The kitchen has been restored to the turn of the century. The table, chairs, highchair, ironing board, crocks and other utensils displayed came with the house. All of the bedroom furniture (except for one bed) was Mr. and Mrs.Nincehelser’s when they set up house in 1885, and it was used by their daughters until their deaths. A blue and white quilt that was made by Mrs. Nincehelser for each daughter rests on the beds.

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