For a buyer in search of a ready-made time capsule, a rustic village for sale near Missouri’s Truman Lake might be just the place. It’s a hand-crafted replica town on 20 acres of land.
“It was all created by one family starting in the 1970s. The son would draw out buildings, then they would create them,” explains listing agent Susan Newman, with Missouri Lakes Realty.
The end result is a miniature 1800s-era town in Warsaw, MO, which is now on the market for $295,000.
“They built a jail, a schoolhouse, a general store, woodworking shop, cabinetmaker, a blacksmith shop, and a mill with a steam engine that makes cornmeal,” Newman says. “They wanted to create a place where you could go and see how the pioneers did everything.”
Newman, who grew up in the area, says the pioneer village was a local novelty but never a huge tourist attraction. It was open to the public from the late 1970s until 1997. When it was open, the village wasn’t an expensive attraction.
“It was all donations when it started, and then it ended up being $3 where it topped out before they closed it,” says Newman, who once worked at the ticket booth.
“A lot of locals have such wonderful memories. The school would bring classes out there. They would serve ham and beans and cornbread made from the cornmeal from the mill.”
Many of the buildings were constructed from reclaimed wood, and a couple of the older structures were brought in in their entirety from other parts of town.
“Two cabins are there, one from 1838 and one from 1841, and one was right in the city of Warsaw. They went there, took it apart, numbered it, and put it back together on this property.”
Accommodations for the owners are somewhat less rustic. There’s a 1960s-era home on the property with a bedroom, kitchen, and flushing toilets.
Some of the structures will need some work, Newman says. They include the roof on the schoolhouse, the worn-out decking on some of the other buildings, and the pathways between them.
The tiny town takes up about 2 of the property’s 20 acres, so the remaining acreage is open to the whims of a creative buyer.
The buyer “could fit neat little cabins, you could do a wedding venue,” Newman says. “You couldn’t go out and build all this. You can redo what is there and make sure it is secure, but there’s nothing like owning an 1830s cabin. You see how these people lived. It’s a Laura Ingalls thing. It’s sweet.”
The antiques and vehicles currently on the property aren’t included in the sale.
“Some are family heirlooms, and [the owner] wants to keep them with him. He has plans to do the same thing when he moves to the next place,” Newman explains.
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