The Cloud House
Doug and Linda Schultz
203 South Main St., Cedarville
The Cloud House is believed to have been built
prior to 1893. During a renovation project in 1980, current
owners Doug and Linda Schultz discovered that Carlton A.
Ingraham signed his initials on one of the original rough-cut
siding boards. Mr. Ingraham owned the parcel from 1889 to 1893.
While researching the home's history at the
county courthouse, the Schultz's later discovered Henry Sehlke
had patented the parcel more than a decade earlier, in 1878.
Many of the nineteen previous owners of the
home are people who loom large in the history of Surprise Valley
and Modoc County. Among them are William T. Cressler and John H.
Bonner who owned the house both separately and as partners, E.G.
Scammon, James W. Sharp, and long time ranchers Jess Stiner and
Ray and Peggy Page. The photo below was taken in 1906 when E.J.
and Grace Beebe were the owners. It depicts a 20 mule team most
likely hauling goods to Cedarville from the rail head almost 90
miles to the south in Gerlach, Nevada. That road remained
unpaved south of the Bare Ranch through the 1970's. Also of note
in the photo is the home's chimney; it was later dismantled for
safety reasons though its original bricks were used to construct
the hearth under the wood stove in the living room. The bricks
were made in the valley.
In the photo above, one can't miss the tall
windmill indicating a well was drilled in the front yard. The
Schultz's found a half-buried old washtub at the same location
soon after purchasing the home in 1978. It was covering the
long-forgotten well head. Barely visible in the photo are
several young trees growing between the house and the highway.
The photo below, taken in the spring of 2005, shows two of the
surviving trees. Though they have been regularly trimmed, they
stand as a testament to the home's decades of endurance.
Though the home has been owned for the past
twenty-eight years by the Schultz's, it is known as "The Cloud
House" by long-time residents. James B. Cloud's wife Mary lived
in the house from 1920 to 1946. Her son Henry and his wife
Emilie lived in it from 1946-1947. The home has three bedrooms
and one bath. The Schultz's have completed extensive
renovations, turning the house into a showplace reflecting the
valley's early twentieth century lifestyle. Most notably, they
removed the exterior's old asbestos shingles, likely added in
the 1940's, revealing the original shiplap wood siding. The
handsome craftsmanship fooled even the county building inspector
who suspected the family had failed to secure a permit for their
The outside restoration and
painting was completed in 1980-81. The kitchen has been
remodeled to reflect the home's turn-of-the-century style;
the floor in the room is original. When old flooring
covering the original wood was removed, the Schultz's found a wealth of well-preserved Surprise Valley
Record newspapers dating from 1917 had been used as padding under the linoleum.
The wood stove in the kitchen was acquired
from Lake City resident Bettie Parman. Some of the beams now
separating the kitchen and living room were rescued when Doug
dismantled an old barn on the property in 1980.
After one enters the home, if they turn and
look back toward the main road they'll see how the front of the
current house from the beam on the ceiling above, including the
office to the south of the entryway, was originally a porch.
Jess Stiner, who owned the home from1947-1963, enclosed the
porch, expanding the home's interior considerably. A doorframe
in Linda's craft room, now serving as a storage shelf, was the
home's original front door. Linda believes that room served as
the home's parlor before later modifications to the layout.
Doug built the cabinets in the living room and
the kitchen and added the pine shiplap paneling in the living
room. Linda says the Cloud House is a "wonderful example of how
older homes were built to be comfortably heated using only a
Over the years, the Schultz's have developed a
lovely garden behind the home. The north side of the yard has
been carefully designed to reflect a series of distinct zones:
dry creek bed (closest to the main road), wetlands, mountain
slopes, and a meadow. The entire progression ends at the
couple's peaceful pond which is deep enough to support fish
year-round. The south side of the garden is a bit more
"structured" and features herbs and flowers in raised beds.
Doug Schultz retired from the Forest Service
in 2000. Linda retired from Surprise Valley Hospital's financial
department in 2005. They willingly moved to the valley in 1978
even though they both vividly remember a fierce windstorm that
marred their first visit to the area in 1976.
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08 Dec 2022 13:26:16 -0800