Rick and Melissa Keuroglian looked at more than 100 homes before they found the prairie-style house on Greene Street they both fell in love with.
It had everything they wanted: an office for her Internet business, close proximity to First Presbyterian Church (where Rick is the director of evangelism and director of community development), space to entertain and a basement.
And they wanted a neighborhood with a sense of community.
"We found a diamond in the rough," Rick said.
"We were very lucky to find this home, because it is in such good shape," Melissa said.
Rick never considered himself a history buff, but after finding artifacts from an old Augusta dairy in the attic, his curiosity about the home's past was piqued.
The property originally belonged to John Sancken, a German entrepreneur who immigrated to the area when he was 16. He bought several dairy farms and established Sancken's Dairy, Rick said.
The couple found old trays and milk bottles bearing the brand in their attic and incorporated them into their contemporary décor.
Sancken built the house in 1917 to replace an original home that was burned in the fire of 1916. when 25 city blocks were destroyed.
Rick said he doesn't know much about the original house, but he does know that it was smaller and was built between 1884 and 1890.
The house was constructed of hollow tile and stucco in an effort make it fire resistant, and cost $5,500 to build in 1917. It still has many of the original features such as pocket doors, original kitchen cabinets, original white antique oak flooring downstairs and heart-pine floors upstairs.
The foyer creates a dramatic entrance. White columns flank the first landing of a wide staircase that winds to the second floor. A large window overlooks the second landing and can be opened, along with the door to the second floor's sleeping porch, to create a cooling draft in the summer.
An original light fixture powered by knob and tube electrical wiring lights the room.
Melissa said probably 20 percent of the home is still powered by the old electric system.
"All the major outlets and electrical things are converted. It's just the things that aren't used very much that haven't been converted yet," she said.
A small bell in the floor of the dining room hearkens to the home's more affluent days, when it summoned servants from the kitchen and butler's pantry, Rick said.
The home was designed with two master bedrooms on the second floor, each with large closets.
"Back then, they would pay taxes according to how many rooms you had. For this they would actually pay more because this was considered a room and not a closet," Rick said.
The Keuroglians' home was about 70 percent restored when the they bought it, Rick said. They have since installed a second bathroom, stripped paint off the floors and stripped some of the interior wall paint.
The couple loves the wide streets, and the porches that allow neighbors to visit each other.
As president of the Olde Town Neighbor-hood Association, Rick envisions a thriving neighborhood in which neighbors feel safe and help one another.
Just like in the old days.
"For the first time, throughout all the (places) I've ever lived, I know all my neighbors," Rick said.
"We're hoping that more couples will want to come down and make over these old homes," Melissa said.