Reddick Mansion with original roof
Reddick Mansion with its
Original Roof Appearance
Reddick Mansion as a public library
Appearance of mansion at time
of its use as a public library
Reddick Mansion in 2016
Appearance of mansion at this time

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Reddick Mansion Exterior

Style and Cost

Commissioned in 1855 by central Illinois businessman and politician, William Reddick, this splendid mansion was the home of the Reddick family for nearly 30 years. The twenty-two room mansion was designed for the William Reddick family by two prominent mid-western architects: William B. Olmsted and Peter A. Nicholson.

Construction began in the spring of the 1856 and it is reported the house probably cost about $25,000. Using an inflation calculator developed by S. Morgan Friedman, this dollar amount translates, conservatively, into $592,213.79 for the 2008 building Mansion front exterior in 2009season.The monumental structure stands fifty feet in height and measures fifty-five by sixty-four feet. Colorful contrasts of cream Lemont Limestone and a rich red brick give the exterior a unique appearance in comparison to other Italianate homes.

The Italianate style itself is distinct for the time -1856. The architectural style features a low-pitched roof with heavy brackets under the eaves and round-headedSoutheast exterior corner of Reddick Mansion windows.It is so named because it is patterned after the villas of Italy. Numerousfactors contribute to the distinct details of this structure – the use of polygon bays, a “basement” that was at ground level. This style in the interior translated with the use of extremely ornate plaster ceilings, and fifteen elaborately carved marble fireplaces.

The Reddick Mansion has been known to be one of the most expensive and ornate Italianate residences ever constructed in the Midwest during the mid 1800’s. Few other pre-Civil War homes in Illinois compare to architectural quality or complexity to the Reddick Mansion. The quality of workmanship and building design still delights and stimulates the curious mind. An undated report written by a student at the St. Bede Academy High School, Peru, Illinois, reflects this influence on the modern mind. That report, written by Adam Gnidovec, entitled "The Reddick Mansion: A Local Example of Ante-Bellum Italianate Architecture in Illinois," can be read by clicking here.

Exterior Restoration

Elements of the exterior of this fine building are showing the wear induced by over 100 years of use. Wood trim and stone repair are only two areas of considerable concern.

Wood trim restoration needs of Reddick Mansion

Sample of wood trim in need of restoration and painting

   
Exterior stone work restoration needed

Sample of stone work needing restoration -
west side of main floor exterior porch

   
Foundation repair needed

Sample of stone work needing restoration - location is an area of the foundation

It is the hope that the exterior of the Mansion will undergo much needed restoration in the years to follow. Through the generous contributions of interested parties and members of the Reddick Mansion Association, this hope, while only a dream today, will become a reality of tomorrow. Individuals and groups who are considering becoming involved in this restoration project might wish to view website information that can found by clicking here.