We traced the history of the property back to the 1790s to the first
recorded deed. The house was originally a small one-room log
cabin, now a portion of the kitchen. The logs can be seen if
you crawl under the kitchen and were exposed when we removed a
window in the kitchen for access from the kitchen into the enclosed
front porch area. The small log cabin must have had, at one
point, an outside kitchen on the back with a large walk-in
fireplace. This small outside kitchen was included into the
inside kitchen area as well as another small area to create the
kitchen area that exists today. The kitchen area is believed
to have had a low ceilinged sleeping loft area above it. At
some point in time, the log walls were encased in stone and stone
walls completely surrounded the cabin. The inside walls and ceiling
of the kitchen are wide wood boards over plaster made of mud/clay
and animal hair/straw applied to the inside the stone walls.
You are probably wondering what became of the original large
walk-in fireplace . . .we did too. The home inspector who
ventured into the crawl space under the kitchen said the original
lentel is still there as is the chimney. The inspector said,
at one time, there was a fire in the chimney, evidenced in the
attic space where the stone was removed to put the fire out.
The fireplace today has wooden doors and shelving and is a large
pantry; but, the inspector revealed that at one point it was an
inside "wash room" <clears throat> . . . toilet which actually
drained into the back yard (yuck!).
The story continues with
the addition of a room off the kitchen (the living room), a tight
winding staircase (open to the living room), and the roof of the
house lifted to add a full height second floor. A neighbor
spoke to a person years ago who actually witnessed the lifting of
the roof to add the full upper level. Stone outside walls
incase this addition and were blended into the existing stone walls
to create a solid stone home with 27-inch thick stone walls from the
ground (including the exposed basement walls) to the roof.
The basement area is another story all onto itself, with an original
shower in the corner of the one basement room which, we are told, was
common before inside plumbing in order to shower off the days work
dirt before coming up into the living portion of the home.
There is a spring room in the basement where water was brought into
the home from a larger underground spring house that still exists
today under the back patio accessible from the pond. The pond
expert we used to restore the pond area was brave enough to venture
inside and reported that there are two original gravity type pumps;
one of which is still operating and pumping water down to our
neighbors property at the bottom of the lane. The inside
spring room now contains the well equipment and water
filitration/purification equipment. It is lined with shelving
which we surmise was the cold storage before refrigerators.
We continue to find secrets as we slowly get to know the property,
including the orginal stone lined well with small, low stone
enclosure above it; the entrance covered with a heavy, thick slab of
metal. The same pond expert again very bravely scooted on his
belly inside the well covering for a look down into the well.
Water from this well feeds the swimming pool through a gravity hose.
In all, the pond expert found five springs on the property.