Holiday Spirit

Madison, Ind.'s 'Nights' home tour
to feature six private homes

Troutmans to show off their
recently renovated house on Main Street

(November 2021) – Simply known as 612, the Brick Victorian Italianate (circa 1869), owned by Randy and Ellie Troutman, will wow tour goers on the 2021 Nights before Christmas Candlelight Tour of Homes, presented annually by VisitMadison Inc. Tour dates are Nov. 26-27 and Dec. 3-4. Tour Hours are 5-9 p.m. Fridays and 3-9 p.m. Saturdays.
In addition to 612, this year’s tour will also feature five other private homes – The Kennard Home, the Bellar Home, the Ricketts Home, the Taylor Home and the John Boyd/Pennington Home. The Lanier Mansion, Shrewsbury-Windle Home, Jefferson County History Center and the Masonic Schofield House are the selected public sites on this year’s tour.
Four Hospitality Sites are also included. These include the Lumber Mill Antique Mall, Fairfield Inn & Suites, Mad Paddle Brewstillery and McWhiggins Wonder Emporium. Prince of Peace will be the featured church on the tour. (Please note the church will not be available during mass 6-7 p.m. Saturdays.)

Ellie Troutman house

Photo by Don Ward

Randy and Ellie Troutman have been renovating this home at 612 W. Main St. and plan to have it ready for the Nights Before Christmas Candlelight Tour of Homes in late November.

The Troutmans purchased 612 in January 2019 and immediately began renovations. The restoration process included installing new floors, HVAC (on all three floors), plumbing, electrical, plaster restoration, painting and much more. Ellie estimates the home is approximately 9,000 square feet, and those on the tour will have the opportunity to view the entire house, including the magnificent third floor ballroom.
612 was originally occupied by Peter Weber, the proprietor of the Union Brewery, located at 602-604 W. Main St. that operated from 1863-1891. In the 1940s the home became a seven-unit apartment house. Around 1971, the home was purchased by Bob and Glenitta (Gigi) Boldery, and it remained in their family until the Troutmans purchased it.
After two years, the Troutmans say the house is now “tour ready.” Their attention to detail is incredible, and Ellie is quick to point out that she has preserved some of Mrs. Boldery’s décor, since she feels a kindred connection to her. The home features murals on the ceilings, plaster medallions and numerous chandeliers, many acquired from a hotel in France. The entryway highlights the same wallpaper that graced the walls when the home was owned by the Bolderys.

Ellie Troutman

Photo by Marci Auxier Jones

Ellie Troutman has used severel artisans to renovate the home.

Mural artist Kristina Lemmon added stenciling and a glaze to give it a fresh look. She is also responsible for the faux mahogany grain finish on the woodwork throughout the house, a seven-step process, applied over the formerly painted woodwork. Her murals grace the ceilings in several rooms throughout the house.
Lemmon has 40 years of experience and has worked on such high-profile sites as the Indiana State Capital Building, Culbertson Mansion, Lanier Mansion and the Vice President’s office in the White House. She started out as an engineering major at Purdue University, but a summer job with a decorative painting company changed the course of her life, and she enrolled in Herron School of Art in Indianapolis.
Many of the artisans who worked on 612 have worked on other projects with the Troutmans. Scott George, a master carpenter from La Grange, Ky., estimates this is the 13th project on which he and Ellie have collaborated.
“I love having the freedom to be creative, and we mutually benefit from it,” he said.
Jerry Hyle, also from La Grange, has installed new flooring throughout the house, except for the rooms with wool carpet. According to Troutman, “The floors were in bad shape, so we decided to replace them.”
Joe Becker tackled the task of interior and exterior painting and stained the mahogany wood in the kitchen and ballroom. Local plaster aficionado Terry Wullenweber did all the plaster work and designed and molded the ceiling medallions.

Troutman house chandelier

Photo by Marci Auxier Jones

A large chandelier hangs in one room of the Troutman's home in Madison, Ind.

“I hire artists, and once they have my confidence, I give them the freedom to do it. You lose the artistic value when you micromanage,” said Troutman. Although many of the crafts people working on the home are from Ellie’s current hometown of La Grange, Ky., she said, “I tried to buy local when I could to support local businesses, including glass shower enclosures from Glass Unlimited and quartzite countertops from GranBrazil.
The house features eight bedrooms, four full baths and two half baths. Troutman plans to rent the entire home on Airbnb. It will sleep 16 people and will be available for special events such as retreats, girls’ weekends, wedding parties and family reunions.
Troutman traveled to Atlanta to purchase holiday decorations for the tour. Each room will have a different holiday theme and expect “over the top!” The double parlor will feature a life-size nativity. Another room will reflect the 12 days of Christmas, and the kitchen will be festooned with fruit and natural items. She said she is thrilled to show off this Main Street beauty.
When asked if she was excited to be on the tour, her response was, “Yes, oh yea. This is a way to give back to the community.”
Night’s coordinator Erin Kindle said, “I am so excited to step into the coordinator position. It has always been one of my favorite events, and I have attended annually with my mom and sisters. I know I have some big shoes to fill, but I am working with a great group of people that have helped immensely in the process. This is going to be a great year.”
Meantime, the Great Cookie Caper will return for its 10th year at the Lanier-Madison Visitors Center, 601 W. First St., during tour weekends. The beneficiary of this year’s proceeds is Girls Inc. of Jefferson County. Hours for this “sweet” fundraiser are 4-7 p.m. Fridays, and 1-7 p.m. Saturdays while supplies last.
Tickets are available for purchase at the Visitors Center or online at www.nightsbeforechristmas.com. A handling fee applies for online sales. Adult tickets are $15 if purchased by Nov. 12, and $20 after. Children’s tickets ages 5-12 are $5 or $6 after Nov. 12. Tickets are good for any of the four nights of the tour and are non-refundable.

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