LEXINGTON -- Too rundown to live in, too historic to destroy, the old house in front of St. Brigid Parish had been slowly been rotting away just steps from the town’s famous Battle Green.
Town officials wanted the 19th-century home restored, but the church, which owned the building, wanted it destroyed.
Stalemate ensued and the house sat in limbo.
All that changed dramatically in front of hundreds of onlookers Saturday night when Patrick Carroll, an independent contractor from Bolton, had the two-and-a-half story home loaded onto a truck and hauled it around the Lexington Battle Green.
With the help of police and a half-dozen utility crews, the home was painstakingly moved from 1991 Massachusetts Ave. to a site almost a mile away at 35 Hancock St.
There, Carroll plans to restore the home and sell it this fall.
“It’s just such a handsome house,” Carroll said Saturday night, as the house traveled past him on the back of the flatbed truck. “I see past the peeling paint.”
He bought the Colonial-style house from St. Brigid Parish for $2 after receiving permission from the town to relocate it, at a moving cost of about $20,000 and he purchased the lot from the Historical Society for $375,000. He will have space to add a two-car garage and a new master bedroom to the relocated home.
But with unique old characteristics such as wooden pegs and mahogany railing inside the old home, Carroll said what he’s really looking forward to is the restoration work.
“I just have a love for old houses,” he said. “They just have a rhythm of their own.”
Once he’s done with the restoration, Carroll said he hopes to sell the home for about $1.1 million.
“It went from everyone’s desire to put it in a dump to now being a millionaire’s home,” Welch said.
Saturday at 7 p.m., after a blessing by the Rev. Arnold Colletti of St. Brigid, the old home was hauled onto Massachusetts Avenue and parked in front of the Minuteman Statue for a half-hour before turning up Bedford Street.
“I wanted to see how they were going to do this,” said Andy McClain, a 60-year-old Lexington resident who joined hundreds of people around the Battle Green to watch the spectacle.
From Bedford Street the house turned onto Hancock Street, where it crashed through several tree branches relatively unscathed after utility crews cut the power and moved overhanging wires from the street.
Finally, by about 9:30 p.m., after months of planning, the house pulled into its new site, more than three hours ahead of schedule.
“We didn’t even get a ticket,” Carroll said.
-- Globe correspondent Brock Parker can be reached at email@example.com.
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