In 1903 John Albert Scorup commissioned stone masons Nick Lovace and Ed Thompson to construct a house.
They did this using stone quarried from the bluffs for which the town of Bluff was named.
The date makes the house something of an anomaly, since the focus of the pioneers had shifted to Blanding and Monticello by that time. (Construction of a county courthouse was abandoned in 1893 and the county seat moved to Monticello.)
On January 2, 1895, Scorup married Emma Bayles of Bluff. After spending the winter with his parents in Salina, Scorup and his bride established their home in a small rented log house in Bluff. Scorup was an early rancher in San Juan County and made his fortune with the Scorup Cattle Company.
The Scorup house has endured despite time and neglect. Elegant verandas and porches encircling the house were removed, paint on wood trim faded, and walls settled causing, mason joints to crack.
But there is hope; the current owners poured a new concrete base to stabilize the walls and hired a stone mason to replace lime mortar between sandstone blocks and rebuild the fireplaces that once heated the house.
As remortarization went on they found things that the Scorups had lost. Packrats had stashed cashes of pinion nuts, and dried roses in the ceilings and walls of the house. They also found children’s art work, Veda Scorup’s Brigham Young Academy report card, broken china, six pairs of underwear, a child’s shoe, a set of oak table leaves, and liquor.
Under the eves worker’s found copies of the Desert Semi-Weekly News dated 1903 and 1912 still having Scorup’s mailing label, cotton collars for men’s shirts, stamps, post cards addressed to Mrs. Emma Scorup, mail-order catalogs, and a 1909 issue of the Women’s Home Companion, in another packet nest.
Dried roses, a child’s shoe, children’s art work, school report and bottles found in walls and under floorboards. From photographs, verandas and porches were rebuilt, and Emma Scorup’s fruit orchards and rose garden were re-established.
Scorup and his family lived in the house from 1904 to 1917, then moved north for a better education for his children.