Ray and Kay Campeau live in two different worlds, and they don’t even have to leave their house.

“We have a special treat,” Ray Campeau said. “We don’t even have to go travel someplace.”

Both worlds are right there at 419 S. Grand St., in the James Martin House.

One world dates back to 1892, when the house was built.

Architect George Hancock, who also designed the Bozeman Hotel and the St. James Episcopal Church in Bozeman, added several unique features to the residence, including designing and building the dining room around a dining-room set, where the chair rail still perfectly fits the back of each chair.

The stained-glass windows gracing the dining room and library are also original, as are two more in and above the front door that feature Montana’s native bitterroot flower.

Bedrooms sets, clocks, lamps, even the entryway umbrella stand — all have their own stories.

“There’s a fond memory in every corner of this place,” said Kay Campeau, 71.

The other world, tucked into the third floor, is quintessentially the Campeaus’. Ray Campeau, 76, is an artist and the third floor houses his studio.

Light streams through large windows in a raised portion of the ceiling, down to the green shag carpet below.

Artwork is everywhere. In one area he has displayed sculptural pieces that are so visually interesting that, in a short visit, it’s a struggle to decide whether to keep studying one or follow the urge to move to the next.

Ray Campeau said he has long had a love affair with this home, where he and Kay have lived since 1967.

James Martin’s daughter, Julia, lived in the house from the time she was 9 years old until she died in 1966. At that time, Ray Campeau was working on his master’s degree in art at Montana State University.

But he was so taken with the house that after Julia Martin’s death he took to driving his motorcycle in circles around the block and sitting on the porch of the house to make sure no one was looking to buy it, even though he wasn’t really able to afford it himself.

“When Julia Martin died, I was upset because I didn’t have a nickel,” Ray Campeau said.

Two women he knew in the MSU art department, Jessie Wilbur and Frances Senska, sympathized. They knew the house and they wanted the Campeaus to have it. So they each gave Ray Campeau a check for $2,500, enough for a down payment on the one-of-a-kind residence and all of its contents.

“We were so lucky to get it,” Kay Campeau said.

The Campeaus have only made minor changes to the first two floors, but decided to do some work on the third floor. In the process, MSU architecture students who were helping them out found, in one corner, a 5-foot-wide space under the eaves.

There they found a postcard, date stamped Aug. 25, 1892, advertising a play, “The Stowaway” as “The Best Play of the Season!” and “Better than Before!”

The corner is now a secret passageway between the art studio and the Campeaus’ bedroom.

“We just thought this house should have one,” Ray Campeau said.

But between the couple’s grandchildren, and all the tours they give of the house, the passage is secret only in that the latches are hidden in the recessed bookcases.

“It’s absolutely not secret because everybody knows about it,” he said.

And that’s just the way they want it. They have lived in the house for 43 years and still love it as much as they did when they moved in.

It has so much history, Kay said, “We feel an obligation to share it.”

Rachel Hergett may be reached at rhergett@dailychronicle.com or 582-2603.