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         Valhalla is a mansion found on the Owensburg-Koleen Road, southeast of Bloomfield. Although this mansion has had many owners, the current owners are Gary and Karen Crum. This wooden-structured mansion dates back to the pre-Civil War era and has been restored by a previous owner, Robert Patagoni-Rehner. He worked on the mansion from the 1960s to 1995 when he sold it. He restored this mansion with the idea of making it the beautiful and peaceful place it once was.

         The Valhalla mansion was built in 1770 by a family with the last name of Armstrong. Originally the structure was a log cabin. Several rooms have been added throughout the years, and the exterior has been painted white. It now contains twelve major rooms, including three bedrooms, living room, library, chapel, pink room, green room, and dining room.

         During the time Patagoni-Rehner owned the house, tours were held on special occasions. The following describes the setting that could be observed under his ownership.

         The master bedroom was of Japanese style. Because of the precious mats, shoes had to be taken off before entering. The walls were specially decorated, such as the Kabuki Dancer in costume over the bed. This room had a small adjacent room, filled with important pictures and art projects. The room opened into a stairway that lead down to the patio and gardens. The stairway allowed entrance to the gardens without going though the living room.

         The back bedroom was done in all white and Wedgwood green. It was much smaller and was decorated in the 1770s style. Authentic candleholders, mirrors, and cabinets were highlights of this room.

         The top floor of the mansion was a bedroom as well as an art gallery. Many paintings, mostly those of Robert Patagoni-Rehner, were located in this room. It also contained many collections from his childhood.

         The living room was filled with colonial art, and the overhead light was made from Australian glass. All walls were decorated, and one wall was a duplicate of "The Creation of Man." The fireplace had been closed up due to fear of fire destroying the mansion. The floors were made of black and white tiles, and the windows were covered with Venetian blinds. Both of these features represented the 1770s style of decor. In 1967 Loretta Sachs and John Godfrey were united in marriage in this living room. Both were students at Indiana University when they got married. Loretta had worked at the Shawnee Theatre for several summers before 1967. She was friends with Robert Patagoni-Rehner and had the privilege of having her wedding in this room with its impressive circular stairway as the backdrop.

         The library was decorated as an Eighteenth Century Captainís Cabin. The walls were slanted, and there were special beams. This room held an authentic gun collection, along with part of Patagoni-Rehnerís book collection.

         The chapel was located at the top of the stairs and was decorated after Charterís Grove with mostly walnut paneling. This chapel contained the Chalices and Crucifix from St. Peterís Cathedral. It was full of specially carved angels.

         The pink room was decorated with a Chinese Chippendale style. It had a hand carved ceiling, and all the furniture was made by hand. This room was considered by many to be one of the loveliest rooms in the house.

         The green room was just off of the living room. Designed to resemble the Ladies Retiring Parlor from the famous Raleigh Tavern, the room was decorated almost exactly the same as the original. It contained authentic maps and prints.

         The dining room was decorated with a simple theme. It featured cabinets that were over 150 years old. Next to the cabinets was a large wine cellar. The lighting fixtures were of Australian glass. The table was four by twelve feet with additions at each end.

         At the time Patagoni-Rehner sold the mansion he had almost completely restored and decorated it. The mansion is a treasure tucked away in rural Greene County.


      Article and Pictures Courtesy of Greene County Homes, Volume 12, 2005 Issue.  A publication of The Greene County Board of Realtors, Inc.


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