The homestead was built by Matthew Nisbet who immigrated from Scotland to Canada in 1818. In 1841 Nisbet came to DeKalb County, Paw Paw Township, and constructed a two story log cabin, a temporary home he lived in while he constructed Old Stone House. The home is constructed of ten by four feet blocks of stone which were hauled from Ottawa via ox cart. Nisbet’s home took 15 years to build and has remained in the Nisbet family since its completion.
The National Register listing for the Nisbet Homestead Farm consists of ten contributing “properties” on the 5 acres (20,000 m2) of land. These various properties occur in three categories, sites, structures and buildings, of which there are two, three and five.
Five of the contributing properties on the Nisbet Homestead Farm listing are classified as buildings. This includes the main house, completed in 1863 by Nisbet. Nisbet began construction in 1848 and lived in the log cabin during some of that time. The Greek Revival home is made of a combination of limestone and weatherboard and sits on a concrete foundation, it has an asphalt roof. The site’s other four “buildings” were all built right before the turn of the 20th century and 1935. The earliest among these structures being erected pre-1900, a wooden gable roofed barn, of the English or Three Bay style. The other circa 1900 structure at the Nisbet Farm, also a barn, is a wooden banked barn. After 1909 a tin roofed storage shed was constructed and in 1935 the final of the properties building’s was erected, a shingled double corn crib.
Three of the remaining five properties at the Nisbet Farm are categorized as structures on the National Register of Historic Places listing.
Of those structures, only one was dated on the 1983 Register Nomination Survey. The silo and silo shed were built in c. 1935, according to that document. The other two structures, a water gravity and storage tank, and a windmill well, were not cited by date on the form but are part of the Register listing. The water gravity tank was constructed with stone walls.
The areas at Nisbet Homestead Farm classified as “sites” include the only structure on the property, besides the Greek Revival home, to date back to 1863 and a 1909 building called the Basement Barn. The 1863 log cabin sits on a stone foundation and was constructed sometime before 1863 and after 1848.
^ a b c d e f g Property Information Report, Nisbet Homestead Farm, HAARGIS Database, Illinois Historical Preservation Agency. Retrieved 6 February 2007.
^ NRIS Database, National Register of Historic Places, retrieved Jan. 2007.
^ a b Nisbet Homestead Farm Records, Regional History Center, Northern Illinois University.
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Categories: National Register of Historic Places in DeKalb County, Illinois | Houses in Illinois
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