We've got news!
Well the appraisal is in, and it is mostly favorable. I think with a house this age, which has been somewhat neglected for ten years, words like 'average' and 'fair' are pretty positive. The house and outbuildings qualify for a mortgage, and except for some confusion about a side lot that isn't included but the town believes is part of the same plot, we are very near to a closing date. Once that conflict is cleared up, we should be able to proceed with the sale. The landowner had sold off some side lots, but a single adjoining one is left. That is not part of this sale, but the town records show it all as part of the same parcel. Hopefully that will be clarified soon.
One big surprise with this is the age of this house. I was told it was Civil War era. Well, someone got their wars confused! Land records show it as having been built in 1770, and so that is pre-Revolutionary War! The house is 241 years old. I am astonished how this amazing old place still stands tall and proud after all these years, a testament to the rugged beam construction. Can you picture a colonial era man out cutting, sawing, hewing, and notching those thick and heavy chestnut beams, pegging them together, and people or teams of animals pulling and lifting them overhead to become the framework of that place? I can't imagine having to build my own house from scratch, even with purchased lumber, let alone cutting the trees and preparing the wood myself. What a feat that must have been. I am completely in awe. This will be the oldest house I have ever lived in, and it will be loved.
I have no plans to declare it historic and try to restore the interior or exterior to its original look. This is a house that has seen all kinds of updating over the years, as each owner made it their own. I do want to know more about it though—anything I can find out will help me understand what this place meant to those who had gone before. We will keep the independent spirit of the place alive, bearing in mind that the original builder went off to serve his fledgling country in a battle that made us all Americans today. It is a home that will be loved and cherished as much as the original builder must have felt about it, and the land around it will be made fruitful again. Not planning on a big farm or anything, not at my age, but we will see what we can do to make this place live again. I'm sure whoever built it would sorely appreciate that.
Forget all the hooha you here in the news about what this political party says about that one. Forget about all the screaming headlines and dire predictions for the future. Have faith in what we are at the core as Americans. We are people who can build something that lasts. This house is proof of that.
Have a great day,