The Daily TImes (Blount Co. TN) Thursday, October 29, 1992:
"It's Not Hainted---"Stone Heaven probably was built in an apparent attempt to fulfill a Biblical prophecy. But Juanita Kimsey Shaw, owner of the stone house near the North Wright Road and Harding Street intersection in Alcoa, is certain of one thing about her stone house.
"It's not hainted," she said, using the local phrase to describe haunting.
The stone house bears markings from its varied visitors. Black paint from the Jaycees annual haunted house several years ago remains thick on the walls of the first level, tiny spaces Shaw calls "dungeon rooms." Vandals have left some broken stone and many messages, varying from the mispelled name of Jesus to other metaphysical beings to undying love from someone more human.
But most of the house remains as intended by its builders, William Andrew and Fair Nicholson, who labored to form limed cement, rock and pink Friendsville marble into three-gabled "Stone Heaven" in the 1930s and 1940s. It was built on faith, the late Elizabeth Timmons, a Daily Times columnist, wrote in 1984. The couple, Georgia natives who came to Blount County when he got a job at ALCOA, apparently took to heart Revelations 20:6 in the Bible.
The Nicholsons were convinced they would live to see the second coming and built the stone house to last the prophesied 1,000 year long reign of Jesus, prompting yet another name---"Millennium Manor."
It didn't happen. Mrs. Nicholson's death in 1950, at age 68, was attributed by her husband to lost faith, according to one report. He died in 1965 at age 88.
Architects have studied the Nicholson home. He used Roman arches for support and in doorways, stairstepping huge marble blocks even in building first floor rooms. The roof alone contains 432 tons of rock. Many walls are more than a foot thick. One bathroom is furnished with a stone bathtub and mason chair.
Lawrence "Foxie" Kimsey purchased the house in 1972 and later gave it to his mother, Mrs. Shaw. Stone Heaven presently is home to Eyvonne Lay, Kelly Evans and their four children. "We just live a normal life here," she said.
But that doesn't stop the questions, especially as Halloween nears. "I hear something from someone everyday," Lay said. People want to know if it's haunted or if we've seen any ghosts." ---Karen Robertson Kidd.
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