Whether they belong to working farmers or landed gentry, farmhouses have a rustic simplicity that recalls an earlier era.
This Massachusetts estate, which has known owners of both stripes, goes the extra acre in bringing back the past.
Built in 1785 for the daughter of a Revolutionary War colonel and her husband, it's had just four owners, as far as current owners Donna Annunziata and her husband, Patrick, can tell. Now the couple — who travel two hours and 15 minutes from their apartment in New York City to spend time at the home — is looking for the fifth, and want $2.475 million for the property.
The Annunziatas have owned it for 30 years, and made a weekend hobby of returning the place to its early grandeur.
During business trips to London and Paris — she's a fashion designer, and he imports fabrics — the couple bought objects and materials for their weekend farmhouse and its extensive gardens. They also hired an artist to carefully uncover the home's original layers of paint and recreate those colors where possible, including a beautiful blue on the library ceiling.
Historic details abound. The Annunziatas found 27-inch-wide pumpkin pine boards in the attic, which the couple believes may have been hidden there during the Revolutionary War. The boards now make up the floors for a bedroom and the upstairs landing. The windows, even in the chicken coop, are vintage or hand-blown to look that way.
A Civil War-era barn has been turned into a guesthouse with a kitchen, sleeping loft and stone loggia with a fireplace and patio. The Annunziatas built another barn to hold garden tools and attached a greenhouse, giving them a warm place to visit their plants in the winter.
"There's nothing better than going into a greenhouse in the middle of winter and playing with your plants," Donna said. "You feel like you have a mini-garden in there."
The listing agent is Dan Alden of William Pitt and Julia B Fee Sotheby's International Realty.
Photos courtesy of William Pitt and Julia B Fee Sotheby's International Realty