Is a two story residence constructed of native limestone and is a rare example of fine stonework masonry and Georgian-styled architecture. The 10 foot ceilings, 18 inch walls and "nine over nine" windows enclose two large rooms on each floor, separated by a wide central hallway and a graceful staircase with a delicate walnut handrail. Ornamental scrollwork adorns the side of the risers. There are four fireplaces; three of which are operable and retain their original carved mantels. The chimneys at each end of the home measure 84 x 54 inches. The hand-carved woodwork and six panel doors, the random width floor boards, and linen press closets throughout the house are original. The full basement features twenty ceiling beams of 19 foot walnut logs. The basement windows are encased by horizontal animal bars installed in original wood-pegged frames. Shapley Ross
Shapley Ross, builder/owner of the house , was born in Virginia in 1783 to Lawrence and Susan Ross joining a long line of noble and prominent ancestors. The Ross family ancestry can be traced to the signing of the Magna Charta (1215), and includes not only King John himself, but also fourteen of the twenty five Barons who enforced the new code of English law. The Magna Charta is the very document that served as a basis of the United States Constitution and Bill of Rights which guarantees to Americans the greatest freedoms in the world.
Lawrence Ross moved his family from Virginia to Kentucky settling on Bear Grass Creek in Jefferson County. Owning much land on Bear Grass Creek and having established a large plantation, Lawrence Ross and his son, Shapley, became two of the ten original proprietors who founded Louisville, Kentucky.
In 1817 Shapley Ross moved his large household from Kentucky to Missouri Territory settling in the area of present day Moscow Mills. After acquiring a grist and saw mill on the Cuivre River near Clark's Fort, Shapley Ross began construction of the stone house on the hill overlooking the mill and the river.
In 1821, the year in which Missouri became the 21st state to enter the Union, Shapley Ross and three other proprietors planned the town of Moscow as a competing point for the county seat, naming it after the military exploits of the French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte in Russia. Shapley Ross was recorded as the largest taxpayer in the county in that year, owning 504 acres of land, a grist mill, the stone house, town lots, a watch, and other items. He was taxed the sum of $12.40 1/4.
Shapley Ross died in 1823 leaving besides his widow, Mary Prince Ross, eight children; seven of whom, at the time of his death, were married and living in the vicinity of Moscow Mills. The widow Mary remained in the home until 1831 at which time she sold the house and two lots to Henry Martin, the first merchant of Moscow Mills.