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Statewide Endangered

2012 Ten Most Endangered Historic Places 














Marbold Farmstead
Route 29/State St., Greenview
(Menard County)

This ornate brick farmhouse and its many outbuildings once stood at the heart of over 4000 acres of Marbold family holdings in Menard County. Today it serves as a reminder of the ambitions of our early immigrant families and the prosperity that farming brought to central Illinois over the last 150 years. Vacant for over 10 years and stripped of its interiors, a group of local citizens has been working to purchase the farmstead and its remaining 10 acres from an out-of-state owner. Although the purchase is now complete, the real work of raising the funds to create an historic and educational center focused on 19th-century agriculture lies ahead.
The original farmhouse, called “Elmwood,” was built in 1850 by German immigrant John Marbold. It was given a wonderfully detailed Eastlake-style renovation in the 1880s by John’s son H. H. Marbold. H. H. added indoor plumbing, steam heat, gas lights and a conservatory. He also added fancy new dormers and chimneys and a two-story gabled porch on the front of the house. Behind the house stretches a brick outbuilding that once housed a summer kitchen, dairy and coach house. The farmstead also has an ice house and the remains of a large barn and the original steam plant. At one time the house was connected to nearby Greenview by a wooden walkway. The Marbolds were well known for sponsoring other immigrant families to come to America and they played a prominent economic role locally as bankers, farmers and livestock traders.
Illinois has too few reminders of its long and important agricultural heritage. The proximity of the Marbold Farmstead to nearby New Salem and to Springfield makes it a good candidate for heritage tourism. But the local citizens’ group that has carried out the fundraising to purchase the property will need considerable additional support in order to see the project through to completion. The Marbold Farmstead deserves to be at the center of a much larger effort to protect our vanishing agricultural heritage.

What You Can Do


The non-profit Historic Marbold Farmstead Association is spearheading the fundraising, rehabilitation efforts and program planning for the site.


Historic Marbold Farmstead Association
P.O. Box 438
Greenview, IL 62642
Charlotte Wohler
(217) 968-5808


Additional Links


Lincoln Courier
April 26, 2012







Landmarks Illinois
Suite 1315
53 W. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60604 
tel. 312-922-1742 
fax 312-922-8112



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