The 4,000-square-foot white clapboard Greek Revival farmhouse
is one of the oldest homes in Shaker – built in 1853 – and Kathy
had a good feeling about retiring there. The couple previously
considered splitting their retirement days between their home in
Sierra Madre, California, and a condominium in their longtime
adopted home of Shaker Heights, but had second thoughts
once they found this historic home, which had only two
The house had the right amount of space (there have
been several additions to the original farmhouse), it was close
to Kathy’s children and grandchildren, and it had the right
ambiance for the couple’s huge collection of folk art. And when
Kathy saw her small grandson swaying in the backyard tree
swing, she thought to herself: This is it.
SHAKER LIFE | WINTER 2014 35
In the fall of 2010, Kathy Holcomb took
her grandson for a walk-by of the Fairmount
Boulevard home she and her husband, Jim,
were planning to buy…
“We collect what we like.
Usually, we look for a
little bit of whimsy...”
Opposite page: A rare Noah’s Ark toy from the 1850s.
This page: The Holcomb’s granddaughter Grayson hard at
work at a child’s antique dropfront desk complete with a tiny
Windsor chair; at the bottom of the page, a collection of vintage
drug store buttons reflects the whimsy of much of
the Holcomb’s collection.
PHOTOS: DEBORAH EDWARDS