Dreamy Old Mills For Sale

You can almost hear the wheel slowly cranking, as it lifts water to power the millstones inside. Mill workers hustle about, stacking burlap bags filled with milled seed and shooing away stray cats that have made the stone building their new home.

Stone mills. Why do they fill us with such feelings of nostalgia? One can’t help but stand in awe when within earshot of a working grist mill. Better yet? When you pass a grand stone mill that has been preserved and/or adapted by some patient soul.

If you think the notion of living in an old stone mill sounds simply dreamy, then you’ll love this round-up of mill properties-turned-homes currently on the market. And if you have a few extra minutes, cruise through Jim Miller’s site, Millphotos.com, to see images of mills (stone and timber-framed), broken down by state.

The Edisonville Mill, Strasburg, Pennsylvania


Since 1768, a mill of some sort has stood on the site that now houses the Edisonville Mill/Herr Mill, built around 1822. The building, fed by the Pequea Creek, has served as a flour, corn meal, grist and saw mill, a distillery, a museum and apartments throughout its history. Now vacant and boasting 30-inch-thick walls, 9-foot ceilings, keystone lintels and more, the building seeks a caring soul to call it home.

The Stein Mill, Kutztown, Pennsylvania


With the oldest portion built in 1816, this stone miller’s farmhouse has been lovingly maintained. It sits on 33 acres that is shared by a nearly four-story circa-1857 sandstone mill, which was built by Adam Stein. Fed by Mill Creek, it operated as a merchant mill until 1899, and most recently housed an antiques gallery. The property was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1990.

Hulshizer Mill, Stewartsville, New Jersey

Situated along the Pohatcong Creek, this fieldstone and red sandstone mill was constructed sometime around 1750 and, during the time of the Revolultionary War, provided much-needed provisions to the Continental Army encamped nearby. The mill was converted to a private residence in the early 1900s and, when owned by actor Harry Bannister in the 1930s/1940s, was the site of many posh parties and star-studded events.

Beekman Brothers Mill, Saint Johnsville, New York

Hurry! Auction bids for this amazing Mohawk Valley property are being accepted through March 31, 2016. Situated near falls created by a gorge along Timmerman Creek, this native limestone mill was built circa 1830 and remained in operation through the 1930s. The mill, long abandoned, was purchased by Judith and Ron Hezel in 1988 and converted to a private residence. The property, which includes a barn, a three-stall garage, and a guest house, plus some of the antique milling equipment, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1995. Steeped in legend and lore, the mill is said to have served as a stop on the Underground Railroad.

Irish Country Cottages for Sale

There’s something so romantic about an Irish cottage, surrounded by acres of emerald green. Feast your eyes on these beauties — and feel free to daydream your heart away on this St. Patrick’s Day!

Southwest Cork


This grazing property, located on the Southwest coast of Ireland and only 70 minutes from Cork City (aka the “Irish Riviera”), is as far away from trouble as one can get. The land itself (.5 acres) would prove an ideal organic farm and comes with the remains of a stone cottage. You could rebuild the home, preserve it in glass or use it as the foundation of a garden.

County Clare


Located close to the villages of Bodyke and O’Callaghan’s Mills in County Clare, this old stone cottage is nestled on a half acre. Mind you, the home needs a complete renovation, but with views like this and proximity to exquisite countryside, you may just be more than happy to take the leap.

County Leitrim


Located in the town of Carrick-on-Shannon, the largest town in the county, this three-bedroom beauty boasts views and proximity to the town center and the River Shannon. Perfect for expansion, this home could serve as a holiday getaway or primary residence.

West Cork


Perhaps the best of the bunch, this old stone farmhouse is surrounded by lush farmland and mature trees. The River Brandon runs right through the property, which features an outbuilding and paved yard. The entire home, complete with expansive open hearth, requires a complete renovation (and modernization). Thankfully, you’d be located just three miles north of Brandon, known as the gateway to West Cork, to gather much-needed home improvement supplies.

County Kerry


Nestled near the town of Tralee, the largest town in County Kerry, this thatched-roof stone cottage comes with … wait for it … 12 acres of land, six outbuildings and its own hay barn. Gentlemen farmers, you’ve met your match! Major improvements will be necessary, but you can always warm yourself by the humongous open hearth while a construction crew transforms this magical space for you.

County Waterford


Saving the best for last, this three-bedroom stone home (once a creamery) is located within walking distance of the coastal town and picturesque harbor of Dungarvan. The beautifully renovated home, complete with open hearth and solid timber floors, is being sold with all its contents and furniture. Seaside getaway, here we come!

Quirky Stone Homes and Cottages Along the Water’s Edge

Consider it the best of both words: an old stone home with a sensational water view. Yes, waterfront stone homes do exist. To find them, we hiked up to the Great Lakes region, where, believe it or not, stone homes dot the shorelines.

Take a peek at our four favorites, currently on the market. Caveat: They’re not all in top-top shape, but we think that with the right upgrades and TLC, they could serve as cozy family vacation homes for generations to come.

Wisconsin Boathouse with Beautiful Views


Nestled on a wooded lot and surrounded by Wisconsin’s Nicolet National Forest, this old wood- and stone-clad boathouse would prove the ideal retreat for a writer or artist in need of solitude and inspiration. This adorable cottage overlooks Pine Lake, located at the headwaters of Wolf River, and boasts its own dock and close proximity to sandy shores.

Crystal Lake Cottage to Call Home


The interior of this old cobblestone home would require a complete gut-renovation, but the rewards might just be worth the effort. The property sits along Crystal Lake, a 730-acre body of water located in Michigan’s Montcalm County. The lake is spring-fed and ideal for sailing, fishing and watersports. No shared access means complete privacy no matter what the season.

Fieldstone Home with Hella-Good Views


Another Crystal Lake gem, this lovely circa-1874 home boasts 18-inch-thick fieldstone walls and extensive renovations throughout. A new master bedroom even opens out to a private brick patio! Located in the village of Beulah, this home sits on 10 acres of property that includes 150 feet of lake frontage.

Island Getaway in Ohio


Last but not least on our list of faves is this circa-1870s stone home, located in the “Key West of Lake Erie,” otherwise known as South Bass Island. The home is a stone’s throw from the shore and boasts a circa-1850s all-stone wine press cottage, a pole barn, a garage and a tool shed. Both the main home and cottage are listed on the National Register of Historic Places and the property previously served as a tourist attraction that celebrated Lake Erie’s winemaking history.

The Cutest Stone Cottages

Spring is so close we can almost feel it. And that means a whole new batch of stone homes will hit the market. The latest to pop up on our radar date from 1740 to 1810. Can you just imagine savoring a cup of tea in front of the cozy fireplace or tending garden in the backyard of one of these adorable cottages? Like puppies, kittens and all things diminutive, these beauties can’t help but warm the heart. Enjoy!

Former Artist Abode in Blairstown, New Jersey

Old Stone Cottage, Blairstown, New Jersey, Moravian architecture, old stone home, old stone house, colonial home, old stone home for sale
This stone cottage, circa 1740, is built in the pre-Revolutionary War Moravian style. Architectural details include three stone fireplaces, hand-hewn beams, and stone and wood floors. A detached studio is perfect for the artist or musician and the place where previous owner, artist Ben Wilson, created some of his finest work! The home is sold “as is”.

Solid Stone Farmhouse in Annandale, New Jersey

old stone cottage, Annandale, New Jersey, old stone house, old stone home for sale, stone farmhouse, historic home for sale
Beautiful stonework, a desirable location in Clinton Township, New Jersey, beautifully reworked interiors — what’s not to love about this circa-1800 stone cottage? The right owner would have great fun researching the history of this property, which was formerly hidden from view by overgrown pine trees and brush.

Weekend Retreat in Whitehall, New York

Old Stone Cottage, Whitehall, New York, old stone houses, old stone home for sale, colonial home, historic home for sale
Vermont is just a stone’s throw away from this historic stone cottage, built circa 1775-1776. The home sits high on the cliff overlooking the last lock before entering Lake Champlain. The perfect country getaway for someone who works in New York City and seeks refuge from life’s stresses on the weekends.

Former Distillery in Parkton, Maryland

Old Stone Cottage, Parkton Maryland, distillery, Historic distillery on Castle Calder estate, old stone house, old stone home for sale, historic home for sale
All we can say is, “Oy, yoi, yoi!” For sale for the first time in over 250 years, this circa-1810 stone cottage once served as the distillery on the Castle Calder estate. The historic home is being sold with 84 acres of beautiful Maryland farm- and woodland and sits along a meandering stream. The new owner is expected to preserve this dwelling and serve as a caring steward for years to come.

Old Stone Home Needs a Hero

We don’t often dedicate an entire post to one stone home, but this sweet Hudson River Valley property tugged at our very heartstrings.

The circa-1750 Colonial-era stone farmhouse, located in the historic village of Saugerties, is presently for sale. Before you scoff at the price, take note: You get the home, nestled on a gently sloping piece of land, a circa-1800s barn, a lovely bit of meadow, a few more outbuildings (chicken coop included!) and almost 70 acres of lush farmland (right in the middle of which once existed a major Indian path to the Woodstock valley).

The structure itself is described as in “poor condition,” but we’re certain that it could spring back to life with the tender touch of a caring owner. Just another run-down, run-of-the-mill farmhouse? We think not. In the 2005 Town of Saugerties Historical Resources Survey, experts noted, “This house can be directly compared to vernacular farmhouses of Northern Europe. Its builders and the first farmers to till this land may have been among the earliest permanent settlers of Saugerties. To find an early structure this historically intact is an extreme rarity and this house deserves separate, comprehensive study and protection.”

Don’t have the cash to snatch up this historic gem but interested in seeing more of the Hudson River Valley and its concentration of old stone homes? This map will help you see the coolest stone homes the area has to offer.

Diamond in the Rough?

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, after all. Take a look at these fixer uppers and tell us what you think: Two thumbs up or two thumbs down? It would take a lot of love to bring these stone homes back to life, but the rewards may just be worth the pain and effort.

Forgotten Farmhouse in Frenchtown

Situated on the edge of historic Frenchtown, New Jersey, you will find this stone farmhouse (tax records say it dates to 1875). The home sits on almost 80 acres of secluded farmland that boasts horse trails, wooded areas and even a pond. The three-bedroom farmhouse is in a sorry state, indeed. But the land has such potential — and who wouldn’t love living right across the Delaware River from Bucks County, Pennsylvania!

Hopeless Case in Havre de Grace

Located in the sleepy harbor town of Havre de Grace, Maryland, this patchworked property is being sold for the land, not the home, which dates to 1860. The place is in such a bad state of disrepair that potential buyers must sign a “Hold Harmless & Right-of-Entry Agreement” before entering the property! We’re not sure about you, but we couldn’t bear to tear down this historic structure.

Timeworn Cottage in a Port Town


Not much information exists about this old stone cottage in the woods. It’s age? Hard to say. Maybe circa 1930s-50s? The cozy home is nestled on over three acres of woodland in Huntington, West Virginia, which itself sits at the confluence of the Guyandotte and Ohio Rivers. With a heavy dose of elbow grease and some vision, this dilapidated structure could truly shine. The perfect weekend or summer getaway!

Last Hope for La Loma Treasure

A rare find, this Southwest-style cottage located in La Loma, New Mexico, features solid adobe, stone and block construction. Although this home sits on only 3/4 acres, the seller also has 11+ acres — with water rights on the Pecos River — available nearby. Granted, interiors are a wreck right now, but a handyman could quickly whip this home into shape.

Pioneer Home Turned Rehab Project

This pioneer homestead, constructed of limestone, circa 1878, has a new standing-seam roof and windows. It only needs the touch of an old stone home lover to preserve interiors. The Fredericksburg, Texas, property includes an old smokehouse, a storage building and over 77 acres of lush farmland.

The Story of the Lonely Chimney

You know we love old stone fireplaces and chimneys. So we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to share a story about a little lonely chimney that’s lost its home. This information comes to us from architect Leonard J. Baum.

How did this stone chimney become an orphan, you ask? It was originally attached to a 3/4 timber-framed cape, circa 1720-1740, located in Rhode Island. The home rotted and collapsed in on itself, leaving the stone chimney to stand by its lonesome for several winters until, last year, when frost heaves made it necessary to carefully disassemble the structure and store it away for safe keeping.

According to Baum, the chimney cap was fashioned of hammered smooth stones, packed in red clay. Walls were constructed of dressed stone, laid up in very soft lime putty; infill between walls and flues appeared to be a mixture of stone chards and red clay. The bake oven was topped with a turtle-shaped stone and featured a wrought-iron lintel. The kitchen fire box featured a chestnut lintel.

The chimney is almost completely dismanteled and sitting on pallets, with the fireboxes mapped and marked. Baum seeks a new owner who will incorporate this structure into a new or vintage design and also more information on this early American form of masonry. For more information, visit ljbarch.com.

5 Most Endangered Stone Homes of 2015

Our first-annual list of threatened historic properties! We’re bringing to light stone homes and structures that are historically signifanct and in need of caring folks and funds to stabilize and/or restore them for future generations. Take a look at this list and let us know if you have more details or updates on any property listed. Also feel free to reach out with a property you think we should add to the list.

1. Henry Varnum Poor’s ‘Crow House’

Crow House, Henry Varnum Poor, New York, old stone home, old stone cottage, endangered historic properties
Rockland County, New York
Henry Varnum Poor, a famed American architect, painter, sculptor, muralist, and potter, built the main part of his cottage in 1920 and 1921, with all locally sourced materials. His design successfully melds elements of the Arts and Crafts movement with features of a French farmhouse. The town of Ramapo purchased the property in 2007 with hopes of restoring the home; plans have since been put on pause as the property continues to decay.

2. Naugle House

Naugle House, Fair Lawn, New Jersey, old stone home, old stone cottage, endangered historic properties, old stone houses
Bergen County, New Jersey
In North Jersey, the Naugle House, a beloved local landmark, is just one of many historic properties in jeopardy. This circa-1740 Dutch Colonial-style home was built into a hillside along the Saddle River and has ties to the Revolutionary War (Marquis de Lafayette may have visited this home in 1784). The home, added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983, boasts coursed ashlar sandstone block walls. The township of Fair Lawn purchased the home in 2010 with plans to restore it, but rehabilitation has been slow in coming. Residents continue their efforts to save this unique property.

3. Circle Creek Farmhouse/Guy’s Distillery

Circle Creek Farmhouse/Guy’s Distillery, old stone home, old stone house, endangered historic properties, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, Chickies Historic District
Lancaster County, Pennsylvania
Circle Creek Farmhouse, originally used as a commercial distillery, was built in 1826 by John Guy, a hotel owner from Baltimore, Maryland. In 1834, Christian Haldeman converted the structure to a farmhouse. The stone home is located in the Chickies Historic District, a collection of historic homes built by the area’s wealthiest iron masters, plus the remains of iron pits and furnaces and limestone quarries. The home, placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005, has been sitting vacant and neglected since 1988.

4. The Pest House

Pest House, Cockeysville, Baltimore County, Maryland, old stone house, old stone home, endangered historic property
Baltimore County, Maryland
Built in 1872, the Pest House was designed to house the sick and those suffering from communicable diseases (and perhaps segregate African American men from other ill patients residing at the adjacent almshouse, currently home to the Historical Society of Baltimore County). It is believed that the structure was built with limestone quarried in Texas, Maryland, by African Americans. The home has been vacant since the early 1900s and its interior damaged by vandals. Recent news reports indicate that African American historian Louis S. Diggs is leading an effort to raise funds to rehabilitate the building.

5. Rural Mount

Rural Mount, Tennessee, old stone home, old stone house, most endangered historic places
Hamblen County, Tennessee
Perched atop a hill that overlooks the valleys of the Nolichucky River and its tributaries, this stately Georgian-style mansion was built in 1799 by Alexander Outlaw as a wedding gift for his daughter Penelope and son-in-law Joseph Hamilton. Both men were instrumental in the formation of the State of Franklin and, later, the State of Tennessee. The home is an excellent example of early Tennessee stone construction, boasting walls of limestone set in a random ashlar pattern. Surrounded by active pastureland, the home was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975 but, sadly, has sat vacant for the past 30 years. In 2010, several Tennessee advocacy groups joined forces to clean and secure the mansion from vandals. According to a recent newspaper report, the present owner continues to work with preservation groups to develop a plan for the home’s rehabilitation.

Step Inside an Old Stone Home This Holiday Season

The holiday season is fast approaching. Searching for festivities that will spark some holiday spirit? Step inside an old stone home! We’ve rounded up our top six Christmas home tours and holiday events, sure to warm your heart.

1. Firelight Festival, Henry Whitfield State Museum, Guildford, CT


On December 4, from 4 to 8 p.m., Connecticut’s oldest home, illuminated by outdoor fires and luminaria, will be open for a holiday home tour. Popcorn, marshmallows, s’mores, hot cider and hot chocolate will be served and a special reading of “The Night Before Christmas” are among the planned festivities. Guests are encouraged to view the Holidaze exhibit and try their hand at natural holiday ornaments crafts.

2. Holiday Candlelight Tours, Mount Vernon Hotel, New York, NY


On December 4 and 5 at 6:15 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. nightly, one of Manhattan’s oldest stone structures, a circa-1799 carriage house, and, later, a posh vacation retreat for wealthy New Yorkers, will be open for holiday tours. Visitors will be treated to holiday and period music as well as traditional holiday refreshments and reenactments.

3. Holiday Candlelight Tours, Kip’s Castle, Verona, NJ


On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays during December, this circa-1905, 9,000-square-foot stone castle, inspired by the design of medieval Norman structures, will be open for nighttime tours. The home, originally that of a textile baron and later used as a monastery, will be adorned in circa-1920s holiday finery. The history of the home as well as its Tiffany windows will be shared during tours.

4. Christmas City Stroll, Bethlehem, PA


This holiday season, surround yourself by old stone homes and structures in the historic town of Bethlehem, a mission community established by Moravians in 1741. Running through January 10, certified guides, dressed in period costumes, will lead visitors on tours of Bethlehem, highlighting town history, colonial and Victorian architecture and holiday decorating traditions, including candles in windows and the Bethlehem star. The tour route is part of Bethlehem’s National Historic Landmark District, designated by the Secretary of the Interior in 2012.

5. Midnight Madness, Ellicott City, MD


On December 4, beginning at 6 p.m. and running through 12 a.m. on December 5, the historic town of Ellicott City, founded in 1772, will be alive with holiday spirit. The historic district, replete with old stone structures, will be open all night for shopping and dining, as carolers stroll through the streets and Santa pays a surprise visit. Shop windows will be decorated for the holidays with a contest crowning the best decked.

6. “Christmas Around the World” Tours, Belle Grove, Middletown, VA


How did early American’s celebrate the holiday season? Find out at Belle Grove Historic Plantation, which will be open for tours from Friday, December 4, through Wednesday, December 30. The Shenandoah Valley manor home, built by Major Isaac Hite and his wife Nelly Madison Hite, sister of President James Madison, will be adorned with themed decorations provided by regional garden clubs. A grand Christmas tree will be on display in the historic parlor and spiced tea and cookies will be served by the warming fire of the kitchen’s expansive open hearth.

Vote for Your Favorite Old Stone Cottage!

We scoured the market for the most adorable old stone cottages currently up for grabs. Some have been lovingly tended, while others offer an opportunity to flex those remodeling muscles. Take a look at these 10 lovelies and tell us which one you would love to own.