This enchanted tree house looks like something straight out of a fairytale, but it’s a real home nestled in a rural Mississippi forest.The home was built in 1971 by artist Johnny Knight, and it was designed to be a creative retreat where he could escape from the chaos of city life. Because Knight spent so much time at the tree house, he outfitted the 1,200-square-foot space with all the essentials, including a bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen. It also had large windows on all eight walls and skylights to let in as much natural light as possible.”I think for him it was more about being here and being part of nature,” Knight’s great-niece, Kara Lucas, told “TODAY.”
Kara also has fond memories of visiting the tree house as a child; she didn’t have to pretend she was living in a fairytale because it felt like she really was.”Even as young as 4…we were just amazed at this tree house,” she remembered. “It was, you know, so big and secluded. This was the ultimate place to come and play.”Knight passed away in 2003, and Kara and the rest of her family were disappointed when the tree house was put up for sale. Fortunately it was purchased by a family friend who was perfectly fine with the Lucas family visiting every once in a while.Kara’s mother, Gloria, said that the woman who bought the tree house was also an artist, and she was always very welcoming when the family wanted to visit to relive old memories.
The new owner also added some updated features to make it feel more like a home, including a gorgeous chandelier, a stone fireplace, and handcrafted doors.As the years went by the Lucas family continued to go their separate ways, and they rarely visited the tree house anymore. But long after Kara moved away from Mississippi, she still found herself missing the quiet home.”I live in a loft apartment in downtown Los Angeles,” she said. “There is constant noise. I hear police sirens, I hear firetrucks and I hear traffic.… I think the balance of that is having something like this [tree]house, where there’s none of that.”
A few months ago, Kara was checking Facebook and saw that a friend had shared a listing of a tree house for sale in Mendenhall, Mississippi, and she knew it had to be the beloved one from her childhood.Sure enough, she found that the owner had recently put it up for sale, listing it at $135,000.”I had gone home and texted my family members on this group text that we have and said, ‘Does anyone know that Johnny’s house [is] for sale?'” Kara said. “Immediately everyone responded back–I mean, our phones just blew up. Within about a half hour, my brother responded back and said, ‘I want it.'”
Gloria immediately submitted an offer on the tree house, and by that evening she had signed the contract that officially made it theirs.”My advice for people wanting to live in a tree house is just go for it,” she said. “You know, if you have a dream, unless you go for it, it never happens.”She also added that although she hadn’t planned on buying the house, especially on such short notice, the most important thing to her was that the tree house stayed in the family.”At the end of the day,” she said, “home means to me having all my family here.”