Owners, Marjorie and Rurik Kallis purchased the Thorn Mansion in 2001. Together they continue to restore this national historic home built by Sheriff Benjamin Kent Thorn in 1861. Much research and great attention to detail is evident in the work completed by this dedicated couple who have undertaken other such projects on previous homes.
Rurik Kallis is a retired Restoration Specialist with a Master’s Degree in Ceramics. Rurik graduated from USC with a Fine Arts Degree in Ceramics after completing a Bachelor’s Degree from California State College at Northridge California and has worked as a college and university art instructor. He has also worked in the ceramics and aero space industries before becoming an independent restoration specialist.
Marjorie has been a Registered Nurse for 26 years. She spent some of her working years helping Rurik in his restoration business in San Diego, California before going back to school to fulfill her desire to become a nurse. The Kallis’ have raised one son who still resides in San Diego and is also working in the restoration business.
Born and raised in Southern California, Marjorie and Rurik truly believed they would never leave their home in Lemon Grove, a city in San Diego County, especially since they had worked to restore a beautiful 1895 Eastlake style ranch house called the Sunset View Ranch, a completed, period-correct restoration from foundation to chimney. How could it be that they would actually leave the beautiful, award-winning sunset view ranch house, their home of 30 years?
Well, Marjorie and Rurik first saw the Thorn Mansion when passing thru San Andreas on a trip to Eureka California in 1991. Rurik spotted the place and they stopped to take a picture and admire the intriguing estate with a for sale sign hanging from the balcony. As they looked over the brick wall at the house, Marjorie wistfully fell under the spell of the “Gold Country” and said “Wouldn’t you love to have that house?” She then shook her head to cast off the spell and they went on their way. Not once thinking of the Thorn Mansion again for ten years.
Ten years later through several odd but meant-to-be circumstances the spell of the Sierra Nevada Foothills and the Thorn Mansion (a rare example of Masonry Gothic Revival architecture) once again captivated the Kallis'.
Pictured at right,
Since this photo