Beautification Award presented to Brett and Rebecca Coffman property

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Homeowner Rebecca Coffman is congratulated by Envision Livingston committee members Hayden White and Barbie Roberts. Homeowner Brett Coffman is not pictured.

Envision Livingston has named the 2019 Summer Beautification Award winner.

One of the goals set by the Envision Livingston committee is to recognize and award the efforts homeowners have made regarding significant improvements and beautification to properties within the Town of Livingston. The Beautification Award for this quarter goes to the Coffman home located at 403 Daugherty Street.

History of the House

The home where Rebecca and Brett Coffman reside was built by Floyd Speck and his daughter, Lyda Speck.

Mr. Speck made a living in the lumber business, having gotten his start by working for a lumber company out of Davidson County that came to that area with a bandsaw mill to cut a large tract of virgin timber near the Speck home in the Allred community of Overton County.

Mr. Speck and a brother-in-law later went into business together and operated the Speck and Smith Lumber Company. At one of the locations they had a mill set up that was known as the “Horse Pound”, and was so remote, housing, a commissary, and even a building where children could go to school was built for the families and employees of the mill.

Property once owned by Governor A.H. Roberts on what is now known as University Street was purchased by Mr. Speck, and eventually, he built two homes there. The first home was built for and bought by Horace Speck and wife, Julie Speck. That house is owned today by Marla Kay Etheredge. The second home was for his family and is owned today by Danny and Gail Jowers.

When the property was bought from Governor Roberts, the portion Floyd Speck purchased also included an outhouse the Roberts family used. Not only was that outhouse a two-seater, it also had a front porch, something that was quite out of the ordinary.

The inside of the second home Mr. Speck built was unfinished when the family moved from Allred in 1923. The home on University Street was eventually sold to Alphus Bussell in 1939.

In 1946, Lyda Speck bought the property on Daugherty Street for the construction of the home she would share with her parents. Lyda worked alongside her father every step of the way while building this home.

Mr. Speck’s work habits wouldn’t allow him to do anything halfway when it came to how the house was built. In addition, the house was paid for as they went along. Two years later, the home was completed, and on July 4, 1949, Lyda and her parents moved in.

In 2001, Rebecca Coffman purchased the home from the heirs of Mrs. Elva R. Hill who had lived there since 1990. Previous owners include John Thomas Dubree and wife, Jessie Peek Dubree, who owned the property from 1987 until 1990. Prior to the property being purchased by Lyda Speck in 1946, it was owned by P.H. Windle.

New Improvments

Little by little, improvements to the property have been made that include new siding, new windows, and a new roof. Custom made shutters for windows made from old barnwood have been added. Garage doors in the basement have been replaced with french doors. A chimney has been constructed for the use of a wood stove in the basement of the home.

Other than getting a refinishing treatment, the original hardwood floors and all the doors in the home remain just as they were when the Specks placed them there.

The many layers of paint on the front door have been removed and a natural finish has been given to it.

Three industrial light fixtures salvaged from the old Wilson Sporting Goods building in Cookeville have been added, one in the front entrance of the home, one in the hallway, and another in the bathroom.

A discovery of the original shiplap was made in the kitchen when drywall was removed.

The yard has an in-ground swimming pool that the Coffmans’ grandchildren enjoy during the summer months. The grandchildren also have a wooden swing set in the back yard. Old barnwood lumber has also been used for the construction of a pool house.

Not only does the carport have some eye catching landscaping, but flowers abound all around in hanging baskets, antique containers, and flower pots. Rocks from Rebecca Robbins’ grandparents’ old home place are included in the extensive landscaping Rebecca has arranged throughout the yard.

A large rock bench that was originally part of the chimney from the Robbins grandparents’ home sits in one of the flower beds in the front yard. An antique bicycle is in the front flower bed.

Future Nominations

The public is invited to make nominations for the next quarterly Beautification Award, which will be made in September. Forms may be picked up in the foyer of the Livingston/Overton County Chamber of Commerce office. A box is also there to place completed forms in.