On Hatteberg’s People in Council Grove Shirley McClintock is credited with saving an old home that no one else thought was worth it. In ’94 she saw as old house as a way to tell its rich history that parallels Kansas’s statehood….It is the Terwilliger Home in Council Grove.
“It represents people, it represents struggle, it represents pain, it represents beauty.”
It sits on the old Santa Fe Trail now 56 highway on the West edge of Council Grove.
“I wanted this place to be along the Santa Fe Trail where people could feel heart and warmth, a respite from their travels along life’s road.”
In 1994 the home faced demolition because of its dilapidated condition….But Shirley McClintock couldn’t bear to let that happen.
“We should be about the business of saving and preserving not destroying. It’s part of ourselves, it is who we are, and we lose part of ourselves when we don’t treasure it.”
The front part of the home was built in 1860 when Kansas was a territory – over the years it has seen may other forms from that of a home to a gas station. Now restored, it is home to the Trail Days Bakery Café.
“If we could just get enough sleep we’d be OK. It just takes so much work.”
She talked her husband Ken into helping with the renovation and now together they work to make the café a Kansas showplace.
(Ken McClintock) “We enjoy it because we have an opportunity to meet people from all over the world.”
The house was built in 1860 by a frontier family, but it takes its name from its second owners; the Terwilliger family. This was the last house covered wagons passed going west as late as 1863. The McClintock’s have attempted to keep it furnished in the ways of the 1800’s.
“So by the time this house was completely finished, Kansas had become a state. It had gone from territory to state, so the birth of this house is also the birth of the state of Kansas.”
Etched into the side of a doorway is a rare find. It is an authentic Indian pictograph from either the Kanza or Osage Indians. It is believed to be a memorial to someone who died.
“This place requires a tremendous amount of effort on our part to keep it going. Sometimes we’re really tired and we spend a lot of long hours here. But the joys here are the people who come.”
“I honestly believe I was divinely led to do it. That this was God’s plan and I’m just the one who was chosen to carry out my little corner of doing something to stop the destruction.”
“We’re a little old to be doing this but……it’s a work of the heart.”
Larry’s Tag: The McClintock’s have several other historical buildings on their property that they have restored.
The historic Trail Days Bakery Café is located at 803 West Main in Council Grove. For more information, call: 620-7677986