Photos by Bruce Ikenberry Photography
James and Jennie Perkins' ten-plus room Victorian home was completed in 1887.
The grand stairway to the second floor was stained to match the mahogany door frames and other woodwork in the home. The handrail is oak. On the walls is a replica of the original wallpaper design called "Villa Montezuma."
This Pease piano is a bit fancier than the actual one owned by the Perkins, which came from New York around the Cape and up the Columbia River, arriving in Colfax by wagon. All three daughters learned to play it. On top sits a photo of the family around their piano.
Opposite the Music Room is the Main Parlor or Living Room. A complementary bank of shuttered windows frame this front room. Originally there wasn't a fireplace.
Jennie and James loved to entertain. The largest bedroom was set aside for guests. Donated mahogany twin beds (ca. 1850) came west by wagon. A Murphy bed (not shown) was made to look like an armoire.
Adorned with green wall paper, the Music Room and Library is to the right of the front door on the east side of the home. A large bank of windows open to the street. Mr. Perkins' favorite rocking chair has been reupholstered in green fabric. The footstool was a gift to him from the governor of Nebraska.
The needlepoint cover on the piano stool was possibly made by Ethel, wife of Sumner Perkins, the son of James and Jennie. Sumner and Ethel lived in the home following James' death. The stove is similar to those of the day. Every room at Perkins House had its own wood or coal burning stove. Central heat was added when the home was restored.
The Dining Room of Perkins House adjoins the parlor, separated by a large mahogany-framed opening. All such woodwork in the home is original, as is the light fixture above the dining table.
As part of the restoration process, the kitchen was equipped with furnishings common to the time period with the exception of the table and chairs. They were made by Captain James Ewart and found in the cabin.
Five bedrooms are found on the second floor. The master bedroom contains the original bed, carpet, and dresser (on left) used by Mr. and Mrs. Perkins. The yellow patterned wallpaper is similar to the original. Among the furnishings is a corner table that came from the Whitman Hotel in Colfax.