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Young couple finishes restoration of historic Hyde Park house

April 27th, 2012 Posted in Arts and Life

Story and photo by Shannon McCleve

HYDE PARK — Remodeling a kitchen can be bad. Doing a bathroom could have its problems, but try restoring an entire house.

David and Abby Clyde have been restoring their historic home in Hyde Park. It was the first house in the area to get electricity. The company was High Creek Electric Light and Power Company of Smithfield.

“Back then, people traded service for service,” Abby said. “The electric workers were fed dinner by the family while they worked as payment for the electricity.”

David said he fell in love with this house while working on another house in Hyde Park. “I drove by it almost every day and I’ve wanted to re-do this for years,” he said.

He said one day he drove by the house and there was a sign in the yard saying it was on the market and they went for it. “We had to fight to get this house,” he said.

After doing the paperwork and moving in, the restoration didn’t take long to begin. “The day after we moved in, David had the whole kitchen taken out,” Abby said. “We had our entire apartment in our master bedroom. We had all this space but couldn’t even use it yet.”

David said the restoration has been taking longer than normal because living in a house that is being restored is complicated.

“You’re constantly moving things around from room to room and the moving takes a long time,” he said. “You’re never completely finished with just one room at a time.”

Living in it while restoring it has been an adventure, Abby said. With a baby it’s hard to make everything child-friendly. “Sometimes it’s frustrating because it’s constantly dirty,” she said. “But it’s really worth it in the end.”

One of the things that attracted David to the house was the yard, Abby said. He said there is a whole lot of potential and he just wanted to work on it. “David would love to spend his whole life in that yard,” Abby said.

She said they both just fell in love with the house and really wanted to work on it.

“Old houses like this, you don’t find tall ceilings,” David said. With 11-foot ceilings in the house, he is right. He said he has really enjoyed working on this house.

“Restoring a house in Utah is easier because they aren’t as strict with the requirements,” he said. “We don’t do full restorations on homes like these because they were built when there was no electricity or plumbing.”

With all of the work, they’ve kept the original trim work, staircase, banister, balcony, windows on the main floor, and some flooring in the entryway. All other hardware, like doorknobs and light fixtures, was custom ordered from an online antique hardware store.

He said after all of the work he’s put into the house, it’ll be hard for them to live anywhere else.

“It’s one of those love-hate relationships,” he said. “I’ve always loved the character of the house and it’ll be hard to move.”

After it is completely restored, they will hold an open house April 28 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.


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