yankee ingenuity

By
Home Builder with The Restored Homestead
The picture you see is us - the Restored Homestead.  Visit us at www.therestoredhomestead.com. That's Holly on the left and Sherrill on the right.  We started our company to save abandoned homes in New England that were built centuries ago.  There are fewer and fewer of them each year and every time one of them collapses, or is burned to the ground, we lose a piece of our history - the stories of the families who helped build our country.  We also lose invaluable building materials because these homes were framed with hand-hewn beams of chestnut, oak and other hardwoods that were of massive size.  Builders know we can't get chestnut anymore because of the blight that hit our shores in the early part of the last century.  American chestnut was such a staple of our forests and it's an incredible wood - beautifully grained, strong as oak, but more flexible.  The perfect wood for building homes - google american chestnut to find out current efforts to create a hybrid to restore the tree to our forests.

We also use a local blacksmith - yup - the genuine article - to restore the wrought iron hardware that we find.  We have so much fun with him - if you go to our site www.therestoredhomestead.com you can see him in action.  He loves working with us because we bring him the real stuff to restore - and some pieces that he has rarely seen, such as pewter handled door latches.

We have a passion for what we do, and would be happy to answer any questions - or help you find the answers if we don't know them!

Comments (8)

Carol Knighton
Reverse Mortgage Speciaist - Leesburg, FL

Hey Yankees! You have a fascinating business model, and I wish you continued success in that. I've made it a goal to visit all 50 states, and the New England states are our next challenge. Hopefully, we'll see some of your fine work when we head your way. 

And welcome to Active Rain. I'm sure you will find lots of helpful information and people here. I know I have!

All the best!

Carol

Jan 20, 2007 05:15 AM
Anonymous
Sherrill
Thanks so much for the warm welcome!  We look forward to meeting/chatting with lots of people about what they do and what we do!  And please look us up when you travel to New England - I don't know when you plan your trip - hopefully not too far in the distant future - but we'd be happy to be a tour guide around our stomping ground.  Hunting for old houses, we know lots of interesting back roads!

Best to you as well,
Sherrill and Holly
Jan 20, 2007 08:00 AM
#2
Steve Dalton
219-465-8352 - Valparaiso, IN
Northwest Indiana Home Builder

Welcome to Active Rain

We have a group entitled Home Builders of America that I would love to invite you to join, and to post blogs to, and to comment regularly.  Your niche is intriguing and I look forward to hearing more.

Jan 20, 2007 09:13 AM
Christina Botteri
REeBroker - Roseville, CA

Hey guys ... welcome to the Rain!

Your post reminded me of our relative history - from a regional, national, and internantional perspective. Boy, that came out kinda snotty-like.  Here's my point ... I have a friend in the UK who is all excited because he's about to move into his new house.  He said to me (no joke!), "It's great! Practially new at only 300 years old!" HA!

Anyway, I'm looking forward to reading more about you and your business!

Christina :)

 

Jan 20, 2007 09:47 AM
Holly Bradman
The Restored Homestead - Hollis, NH
Thanks for the suggestion regarding Home Builders of America - I certainly will look into it!  As to age of houses, I guess 300 years old in the UK really is young! Most houses in the New England area are from the early/mid 1700's and thereafter.  it's very rare to find a home - in any kind of shape - that is older than 1700.  Such homes are called "First Period" homes - built in the 1600's; they resemble to a remarkable degree the home that your friend in the UK probably bought. If you're interested, I can post some links of First Period homes that still stand and are being lived in, or used as museums, around New England.  A few are open to the public and they are wonderful places to visit - better, in some ways, than Sturbridge Village!

There are a couple of very old houses on the Cape: the Hoxie house in Sandwich is amazing (built in the 1600's and supposedly one of the oldest houses on the Cape) - you can google it; I'm not sure whether you can google the Wing farmstead - amazingly, it's still owned by the original family.  They've done quite a lot of architectural excavation around the house, as it was common practice for people to throw any and everything out the front door! So the front stoop area is usually rife with remnants of everyday life from hundreds of years ago.  Really neat!

in fact, there are lots of people in the area who like to "scavenge" around the old abandoned houses with metal detectors hoping to find old coins, buttons - anything that can be sold to local antique stores.  it's quite a trade!  :)
Jan 21, 2007 02:44 PM
Tricia Jumonville
Bradfield Properties - Georgetown, TX
Texas REALTOR , Agent With Horse Sense

I love, love, LOVE what you're doing!  While you're too far away for my local clients here in Texas, I'll be putting a link to your website on my website just so folks can see what's possible - we have some old houses around here that this could be done with quite successfully.  Plus, being in the Morgan Horse world, I do have friends and acquaintances up in the Vermont and New Hampshire environs, and they might be interested at some point.

My husband and I actually live in a 1930's house (in need of restoration/remodeling) that was moved in 1970 from a nearby city to the 55 acres on which it now sits.  The work to be done includes such things as removing cheap paneling that was put on and taking it back to its original beauty - but when you live in a house, it somehow takes longer to get those things done, it seems. 

Christina, some years back my daughter and I were on an educational tour of England and Scotland.  At Edinburgh Castle (where I'd still love to live!  It's my kind of  place!), the six gates in the portcullis were pointed out, and it was offhandedly mentioned that the first gate was a "modern" addition - it was only 150 years old. 

Mar 04, 2007 02:39 AM
Anonymous
sherrill Rosoff
Tricia - thanks so much!  Do please link to our website from yours - we would love to share our ideas and experiences re-assembling old houses.  It can be done, and is a great way to save them - and make them livable for many many more years.  We also share our ideas, experiences in a monthly newsletter so if your friends and acquaintances up in our neck of the woods are interested in learning more about what we do, they can subscribe.  Just another way to spread the word, and save our architectural heritage!
Mar 05, 2007 01:47 PM
#7
Fred Griffin Florida Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

  We invite you back to ActiveRain in 2018!

Much has changed since you last posted to ActiveRain.  I encourage you to take another look at the website.  

  Best to you!

Apr 10, 2018 03:58 PM