Bichet, Claude, Farmstead
2959 US-50 HWY

Address: 2959 US-50 HWY
Address Remarks:3.5 mi East of Florence on US- 50 HWY
Parcel ID:201-02-0-00-00-001.00-0
Legal Description: Section 2 Township 21S Range 5
Legal Description Remarks:ACRES 346.0 , NE/4 & N/2 S/2 & SE/4 NW/4 LES S RR ROW & ROW; coordinates below are listed in the following order: house, barn, milkhouse, outbuilding.
Latitude, Longitude 1:38.25271 -96.84345
Latitude, Longitude 2:38.25274 -96.84289
Latitude, Longitude 3:38.25260 -96.84294
Latitude, Longitude 4:38.25263 -96.84360
Historic Name:Bichet, Claude, Farmstead
Alternate Name:Frenchman Farms
Historic Function:Domestic
Subcategory:Single Dwelling
Historic Function Remarks:Bichet family was one of five French families to settle in this area of Marion County. Claude Francis Bichet (current owner's great, great, grandfather) arrived here in 1858, building the log house in 1859 (reportedly the first log house in the county). He was given the land in 1858; he was a shoemaker in the French Navy. He & wife Sophia lived in a dugout along the Cottonwood River while log house was built.
Alphonse Bichet (son of Claude) added on to the log house in 1875, building a 2 story stone I-house (stonemason unknown). An additional two stone outbuildings built the same year, one of which still stands.
Present Function:Domestic
Subcategory:Single Dwelling
Present Function Remarks:The property on which this house is located is still in the Bichet family and is still a working farm. The house is used as a family gathering space.
Residential/Commercial/Religious Style:Vernacular
Secondary Style:
Barn Type:Not Applicable
Bridge Type:Not Applicable
Landscape Type:Not Applicable
Physical Description/Remarks:c1859 single pen log house with full loft and gable-end chimney covered with clapboard. Loft is completely open. Small stud wall constructed on the interior of the log on which lath and plaster was applied to finish the space. Gable-end fireplace on west.
1875, 4-bay, 2-story stone I-house with center passage added to the east end of the log house; gable end chimneys (enclosed). Living room (parlor) was located where the current kitchen is. Window and door openings at the main level, east fa├žade have been retained but windows/door removed when addition constructed. Stone was covered. Bedroom and small bath occupy what was the hall. One room on south side of second level in stone portion; two rooms on north side of second level in stone portion; central hall. Owner believes it was always like this.
1940s screened porch added to north side of log portion.
1951 Minimal Traditional (1951), one-story addition on east elevation.
1951 two-stall garage added to the south side of the log house.
Plan Form:T-Shaped
Commercial Building Type:Not Applicable
Roof Form:Gable
Principal Material:Stone
Condition Remarks:wood (cottonwood logs) & 18" think stone; rough-hewn logs are the rafters, and they are set into notches in the stonewalls; new windows (historic windows stored in outbuilding to NW of house) in stone portion. Log house retains highest level of integrity; windows in this area match the ones taken out of the stone portion, dating them to 1875. Brick chimney on south end of stone house has been rebuilt. Hood moulds above windows on east elevation are ornately carved.
Architect/Designer/Builder:Bichet, Claude (log)
Year of Construction:1859
Date Notes:1875 stone portion; 1940s: two porches added to log house; 1951 addition of front room to stone portion; two-car garage added to south side of log portion
General Remarks:Located on the north bank of the Cottonwood River.
Ancillary Structures: Barn , Other
Ancillary Structure Remarks:One of two stone outbuildings (1875) extant to NW of house; one to the SW was destroyed by a falling tree.
c1940 milkhouse to south of house is now vacant.
Gable-front barn to SE of house is used for storage. It was built in c1946-47, and is the 2nd or 3rd barn on the site.
Large cottonwoods line the alley leading from Hwy 50 to the homestead, some were planted by Claude Francis. Only a portion remains. A large grove of trees to the east of the house also still remains. In here, the Bichets celebrated Bastille Day with the other French families in the area.
Name:Bichet, Carol Ann (Trust)
Address: 222 GREEN ST Hutchinson KS 67502
Address Remarks:Carol and Frederick
Listed in State Register:Yes
Date of State Listing:11/19/2011
Listed in National Register:No
Date of National Listing:
Historic District:
Date Demolished (if applicable):
Potentially Eligible for National Register: State Only
Register Status Remarks:Because of the addition to the front and south and numerous changes to the interior, this house is not eligible for the NR.
Thematic Nomination (MPDF):
National Historic Landmark:   
Survey 1
Survey Project Name:PSIQ Submittal
Sequence Number:
Surveyed By:Owner/Bichet, Frederick
Survey Date:11/01/1998

Survey 2
Survey Project Name:Kansas - Territorial Era Survey (HPF 2011)
Sequence Number:MN101
Surveyed By:KSHS/Loughlin, Amanda; Martin, Sarah; Clanahan, Christopher
Survey Date:06/07/2011
Reviewed By:Amanda Loughlin
Review Status:Approved
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Bichet Farmstead. North Elevation of c1946-47 Barn. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. Name and Date Stone on North Elevation of Stone House. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. Looking E-SE at log portion and stone portion. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. 1875 stone outbuilding to the NW of house. South & East Elevations. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. Full north elevation of house. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. South elevation of house, showing garage, stone house, and 1951 addition. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. Hood mould at second level, east elevation. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. Looking NE at west elevation of log house and garage. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. 1940s milkhouse. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. Looking north to Hwy-50 from house, showing line of cottonwoods. 06/07/2011. KSHS/Martin, Sarah.

Bichet Farmstead. Site and Roof Plans. 06/08/2011. KSHS/Loughlin, Amanda.
Bichet House. c1945 photos.
Bichet Farmstead. State Register Nomination. 07/2011. Owner/Bichet, Carol.