Save This Old House: A Riverfront New York Farmhouse
A circa 1850 farmhouse in Newport, New York, is up for grabs, along with a barn and a little—or a lot more—surrounding land
Published June 2012
Location: Newport, N.Y.
Contact: Kay Delano, 315-826-7070
The history: After purchasing this circa 1850 farmhouse in 2005, John Slifka made an interesting discovery in the attic: a box of journals belonging to a former occupant named Emily Higgins. A terse entry from the winter of 1887 went like this: "Pleasant, plenty of snow for good sleighing. I have been making a variety (of) cakes today." Not the most riveting stuff—just an account of the simple things that brought joy to a girl in small-town central New York long before PlayStations and iPads. Around 1900, the house was sold to Frank Fitch, who ran Newport's limestone gristmill. And in 1948, it became home to the Sherman family, who remained there for 57 years.
Why save it? The three-bedroom house sits on a hill overlooking the trout-filled West Canada Creek, which is more of a river than its name suggests. The house has a sturdy limestone foundation and retains wainscoting in the upstairs bedrooms, rustic yellow-pine plank flooring, and huge two-over-two windows, which flood the interior with light.
Shown: Also included with the house is this charming red clapboard barn.
What it needs: Exterior restoration, starting with a new front sill to replace the rotted one. The house also requires all new systems as well as updates to its kitchen and only bathroom. The asphalt-shingle roof is in good shape, and the house's water comes from a nearby spring. Once your work is done, you can start chronicling the charms of your own small-town winters, and even bake a cake or two.
Shown: The barn windows are crowned with classically styled entablatures.
The stylish barn details abound above the windows, too.
New systems and a kitchen update are necessary for this farmhouse.
Nearly floor-to-ceiling windows make the front parlor bright and cheery.
An original staircase leads to a second-floor landing and three bedrooms.
Two-over-two windows lighten the second-floor landing.
The 2,198-square-foot Greek Revival house comes with one acre of land, but for an additional $34,900 you can get an adjoining 22 acres.