November 1, 2014 |
Bob Berry's house on the banks of the Pickering Creek near Phoenixville has evolved, to say the least. Born as a 19th-century farmhouse, it got its first makeover in the 1940s when famed architect Oskar Stonerov transformed it into an International-style haven for his family, which eventually included four children, and his wife, Elizabeth, who started a popular cooperative preschool there. Then, when Bob Berry bought the structure in 2005, his brother-in-law and architect John Kohlhaus remade it to fit 21st century needs.
April 30, 1995 |
Because of costly state and federal regulations, plans by township officials to convert a farmhouse to a senior citizens' and community center have been put off indefinitely. Instead, the Township Committee will use a $35,000 community development grant that it had earmarked for the farmhouse project to make an annex to the township's municipal building handicapped-accessible. In addition, township officials had been told that all community development monies must be spent by July 1, making it impossible to allocate the funds to the farmhouse project and complete it in time.
June 19, 1994 |
Five local historical and conservancy groups have sounded off in the debate over the Dannenberg Arboretum, a 9.6-acre property donated to the township and a gift that some think may be too expensive for it to maintain. At issue is the preservation of an 18th-century farmhouse on the land. Township officials have said that upgrading and maintenance of the house could be an undue financial burden. Because the township would like to use the entire property at Susquehanna Road and Limekiln Pike as open space, demolishing the house has been raised as an option.
December 8, 1998 |
The township commissioners are to vote tonight whether to grant final approval to the school district's plans to turn the 250-year-old J. Winston Edwards farmhouse at Fort Washington Avenue and Limekiln Pike into administrative offices next to the new elementary school. If the commissioners approve the renovation plans, which must meet township codes and include sufficient space for parking and walkways - construction will begin shortly after the new year, district officials said yesterday.
April 10, 1998 |
Chantal Claesen has one, big, beautiful bugaboo. A vacant stone farmhouse, built in the early 1870s, has outlasted its century-long welcome on the property she has owned for the last year. Claesen, a Belgian native, is willing to unload the piece of history free of charge to anyone willing to haul it away. An award-winning professional dog breeder, Claesen owns a busy kennel on the Level Road property and lives about 40 minutes away in Bucks County. The animal-boarding business is booming, said Claesen, who started Animal Country Resort last May, and the farmhouse is cramping her plans to expand.
July 14, 1996 |
Since T. Brown (1752), S. Merrick (1795), H. Whitacre (1830) and D.A. Roth (1975) chiseled their names into the stone beside the living room entrance of a historic red stone farmhouse here, the building has fallen into disrepair. The house sits on four acres along the Delaware Canal. The property includes two run-down barns, an icehouse and a carriage house where historians say George Washington may once have tethered his horses. The land is connected to Taylorsville Road by a wooden one-lane camelback bridge.
February 10, 1995 |
When auctioneer Kenneth Geyer started the bidding at a Lower Merion house auction last month, Bill Tate was in the crowd, watching intently. Tate and his wife, Layne, are putting their house, an early 18th-century colonial on about seven acres in Edgmont Township, on the block Feb. 25. The Tates listed the house about eight months ago without generating a serious offer. "We're building a new house. My builder takes about a year, so we were in no hurry," said Tate, who has a tree-service business.
June 6, 1993 |
Every Tuesday when the weather permits, two graying women bring their easels and their oils to Croft Farm, and they paint. Most days, but for the cawing birds and a stray snapper looking for a place to lay its eggs, they're alone, recording the land that time, and most people, forgot. For nearly 10 years, almost since the day the 80-acre parcel became township property, Croft Farm has been the centerpiece of a complicated lawsuit over affordable housing. Housing advocates contended the township bought the land to avoid putting up low-cost housing there.
November 24, 2002 |
Photographs of Nancy Mohr's five children fill every nook and cranny of her home. Dining-room chairs crafted by her grandfather, a Lancaster cabinetmaker, have seated many a family gathering. Family and an appreciation for the bygone days when farmhouses instead of subdivisions dotted the landscape are uppermost for Mohr, executive director of the Chester County 2020 Trust. She has just written The Farmhouse: Classic Homesteads of North America. The book is both a personal account of her own love affair with farms and a description of classic farms throughout the United States and Canada.
April 6, 2007 |
Some people spruce up vintage houses with an emphasis on period details. Others update old places to suit life today. In restoring an 1860s farmstead three miles west of Stockton, N.J., over the last two years, Lise Thompson has done a bit of both. The result is a historically accurate, "green" reinterpretation of a Victorian-era farmhouse - energy-efficient, wired for technology, and with a more open floor plan. The simpler structure of a bygone time blends seamlessly with an addition that more than meets demands of modern living.