We thank Ellie Alexander at Pontiac Tourism for providing the following press release to us:
The restoration of the Jason W. Strevell house will take another step towards completion in the coming week. The finials which rise at the roof peaks of the house have been reproduced and are ready for installation. The Strevell home, which stands at 401 W. Livingston Street in Pontiac, Illinois, is the only remaining structure in Livingston County visited by Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln spent an evening at the home of Pontiac attorney Jason Strevell in 1860. Lincoln had given a speech to the Pontiac Young Men’s Literary Association at the Presbyterian Church earlier that night, and went to Strevell’s home to await the early morning train to Bloomington.
The Strevell house is in the Carpenter Gothic style. This type of home is distinguished by a steeply pitched roof, decorative bargeboards (also known as “gingerbread trim,”) and other architectural features. At the highest point on the roof is a miniature spire or finial. The finials on the Strevell house have been replicated by two local craftsmen, Mike Ingles and Mark Van Hoveln.