Fourth of July Special: Early American Homes

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The original tea partiers didn't spend all of their time tossing tea in protest of an excessive British tax. Just like us, they also kicked back in their homes. And an impressive number of those residences are still around. In fact, authentic 18th- and early 19th- century houses often serve as local landmarks, even as families continue to live in them. Reconnect with your forefathers by clicking through our gallery.

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Fourth of July Special: Early American Homes
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Fourth of July Special: Early American Homes

Get in touch with America's roots this Independence Day by touring some of the most interesting Early American homes on the market -- and by early, we mean that time when our nation actually was taking shape. Many authentic 18th- and early 19th-century homes still dot the U.S. landscape, and they haven't been as affordable in years. So whether you're in the market for a real McCoy, a historic landmark, or are just a huge fan of well-crafted homes, put down the fireworks for a minute and click through the gallery.

Location: 231 Beach St., 06759

Price: $1.95 million

Year Built: 1800

Beds/Bath: 4/4.5


Owning a piece of history usually doesn't come cheap. This sprawling equestrian estate sits on a 68-acre lot and includes a 9,000-square-foot barn. The year this home was constructed was a momentous one for the fledgling nation because in June 1800 the U.S. capital moved to Washington, D.C. from Philadelphia. Just something for the new owner to ponder during a polo match.

Now part of a 68-acre complex (which includes a 9,000-square-foot barn with indoor viewing stands), this four-bedroom, five-bathroom home has 4,700 square feet of indoor space. Sconces flanking the fireplace give the white-carpeted living room pictured here an authentic Colonial feel.

Exposed beams stretch across the ceiling of the kitchen-family room over a stained hardwood floor. The multicolored draperies and railroad lanterns add a bohemian twist to the interior. 

Location: 21 E. Delaware Ave., 08534

Price: $799,900

Year Built: 1811

Beds/Baths: 4/2.5

This Federal-style house takes the best elements of Georgian Colonial architecture and captures a moment in time when America was just making its way in the world. This early 19th-century home  has four bedrooms, 2.5 baths and a thoughtfully designed contemporary interior.

One of 11 rooms in the house, this living room is stocked with traditional furniture and features a built-in bookshelf and fireplace. The home also includes a den, master bedroom, office and two-car garage. 

The home’s lined windows, which circle its two floors, spill light onto stained hardwood floors, as in this space, where a chandelier hangs over antique furniture. 

Location: 2022 Maple Ave., 12019

Price: $1.25 M

Year Built: c. 1810

Beds/Baths: 4/2.5

Situated on 20 acres of tended gardens, this two-century-old farmhouse would make the perfect retreat for Independence Day weekend. The nearly 4,000-square-foot home includes a faithfully maintained interior that reflects its pedigree.

This 4,000-square-foot farmhouse, which sits on 20 acres and includes a separate boathouse, makes for a quaint country estate. Rafters rib the vaulted roof of the family room, with one lone beam fixed between the chimney and opposite wall. 

Wide-plank floors stretch across the four bedrooms and three bathrooms of the 200-year-old house. Here sunny décor, gilded chandeliers, sconces and flowing drapery recall an era of powdered wigs and curtsies.

Location: 28 Old Chestnut Hill Road, 06424

Price: $299,800

Year Built: 1780

Beds/Baths: 3/1.5

As this Cape Cod-style house proves, you don't have to be a millionaire to own a historic home. The property includes plenty of space for raising horses -- just over nine acres -- and the interior has been fully renovated with respect for the original layout.

At 1,700 square feet, the historic Daniel Hubbard House has been expanded from its 18th century form but still retains much of its original character. A few of the now-refinished floorboards, like the ones gleaming here in the home’s great room, are even originals. Tread lightly. 

The home’s snug parlor has a dark-hued wood fireplace surround and exposed rafters. One wonders: Are the ceilings of our smaller-scaled forefathers high enough for us?

Location: 5503 Brooks Woods Road, 20711

Price: $850,000

Year Built: 1785

Beds/Baths: 4/3

The "sold as is" disclaimer in the listing might raise concern, but you can't buy an 18th century home and not expect to put in some sweat equity. But can you really go wrong with a home that has six fireplaces?

This house has no shortage of old-fashioned heat sources. Six fireplaces are tucked into its 4,100-square-feet, which includes four bedrooms, three bathrooms and a den. Two portraits hung between the living room’s blue-trimmed windows celebrate the home’s WASP-y origins. 

The current owner accomplishes the same effect by planting two extra-long candles in extra-long candle holders beneath the dining room’s low-hanging chandelier.

Location: 121 Mount Archer Road, 06371

Price: $3.495 million

Year Built: 1736

Beds/Baths: 5/3.5

If King George had deigned to grace the lowly colonists with his presence, he might have found this massive estate quite comfortable. This Georgian-style colonial farmhouse sits on 45 acres, in the middle of a 1000-acre nature preserve. Located about two hours from New York and Boston, it offers the perfect hideaway for the reclusive royal.

Stretching 6,000 square feet, this luxury home underwent a full makeover in 2004, which equipped it with modern amenities, but kept it  colonial in style. The home offers a master bedroom and guest wing of four additional bedrooms, with a smattering of fireplaces placed among its 12 total rooms. Observe the mix of modern and traditional in the dining room: state-of-the-art sliding doors abut exposed rafters. 

A gleaming wide-board floors stretches across the master bedroom, where a stone fireplace is flanked by windows. Outside, the amenities abound, including a gunite pool, outdoor stone shower, 15-stall barn and riding ring.  

Location: 571 Hess Road, 17844

Price: $237,500

Year Built: 1800

Beds/Bath: 4/2

Take a tour of this affordable home in the state of America's first capital. Having been built in the same year the capital moved from Pennsylvania to Washington, D.C., one wonders what that did to property values.

Vintage homes come a little cheaper out in the country. Mifflinburg is situated near the center of Pennsylvania and has less than 4,000 people. Just over $200,000 gets you a property that includes some waterfront, a barn and more. Pictured here is the living room, defined by its prominent brick fireplace and chimney.

The dining room is tucked into a corner of the house that affords guests small-town rustic views outside its stained-wood trimmed windows. Luckily, this house’s amenities aren’t as quaint as its setting: The home’s spacious kitchen is stocked with modern appliances.  

Location: 178 Smith Ridge Road, 10590

Price: $299,900

Year Built: 1763

Beds/Baths: 4/2.5

Ah, 1763 -- it was a good year. The French and Indian war was drawing to a close, and the colonial powers that be were swapping territories like playing cards. It's also the year that this spacious Dutch-style colonial was built.

South Salem yields a similar bang for your buck, offering this 2,200 square-foot colonial at a modest cost. The home occupies 2.6 acres and also has a barn and two-car garage. While the color scheme of the space pictured here might seem a tad tacky, keep in mind that the house still has 10 rooms. And you can always repaint. 

Cabinets in the kitchen are separated by the pink counter area which, taken in hand with the drab-green trim of the last space, suggests one non-traditionalist attempted to liven up the place with color contrasts. The question is: Did they succeed?

Location: 301 Boston, 01590

Price: $459,000

Year Built: 1770

Beds/Baths: 3/2

Built in the same year as the Boston Massacre, rebellion was clearly in the air when this Georgian-style estate was built. Today, the home sits on seven acres of pastoral landscape. Currently modeled as a two-family home, the 3,024-square-foot property can be converted back to a one-family fairly easily.

Sitting on seven acres of rustic charm, this 3,000-square-foot home offers three bedrooms, two bathrooms, four fireplaces, a kitchen and office. Pictured is the dining room with an overhead lamp dangling over the dining table and traditional furniture to evoke period luxury. 

The house's wood flooring stops short of the kitchen, which features cherry-colored cabinets. After fixing a meal here, residents can dine outside on the house’s portico and later play golf or tennis nearby. 

Location: 133 Mountain Road, 03850

Price: $449,000

Year Built: 1798

Beds/Bath: 4/2

In the 18th century, this Germanic structure was a bustling stagecoach stop. The home has been "structurally restored," according to the listing, and includes five working fireplaces, a period-style coffin door and captain's staircase.

Almost 4,000 square feet and 12 total rooms come with this local landmark. Gunstock corners remain, allowing hunting enthusiasts to rest their firearms in the same spots as their forefathers. In the living room, a fireplace with a thin brick surround faces a dining table circled by period furniture. 

Residents can enjoy the soothing pastoral view from the kitchen while preparing meals -- possibly from a successful hunt? In addition to the country feel that comes with a two-story attached barn, the stone walls and mature trees of the acreage add further richness. 

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