I rarely use the term, “museum-caliber” when describing historic properties. This house is museum-caliber. In my mind, museum-caliber means several things: exceptional architecture, a large amount original (or early) details, accurate historical information, and perhaps most importantly, the house must feature a lot of early period furniture & decoration to make the house “feel” the part. That’s what gives it that “museum” feeling — like you’re suddenly immersed in daily life, say, 200 years ago. Well, the “Abner Richmond Tavern” in Westford Village, Connecticut, is “museum caliber.”
I’ve been inside this house (several years ago) and I was in awe for most of my visit. Each room revealed a new scene that seemed to transport me directly into the 19th century. Going beyond a meticulous & thorough restoration, the current owners (who are dealers in early American antiques) have also permanently “staged” the house to an late-18th/early-19th century appearance. It’s amazing.
The Richmond Tavern, c. 1765 & 1805, is located at the crossroads of a rural New England village, on the former stage route to Boston and Hartford. It is an exceedingly rare example of original high-style Federal architecture and impressive interior detail.
The house features nine rooms (each one with a fireplace!), including 4 bedrooms, 1 ½ baths. The property was thoroughly researched & studied. As such, everywhere you’ll encounter impressive historic features like raised paneling & historic sheathing, and authentic original colors. There is beautiful formal woodwork in parlor and drawing room — including rope moldings over the fireplace, around window casings, and on the chair rail. You can step in to an original buttery and a separate pantry off the summer kitchen in an early ell. One of the more striking rooms is in the front of the house — an early “tavern room,” complete with wooden bars in the tap area.
Upstairs, in one of the bedrooms, remnants of early stenciling were restored and duplicated.
Despite all the historical accuracy & more rustic features, the house includes an elegant modern kitchen with a center island and custom cabinetry that reflects the classic, historic woodwork of the home.
There are also impressive bathrooms that cleverly yet stylishly camouflage some of the modern fixtures. The house retains wide board floors throughout, early doors and hardware, and meticulous attention to period detail combined unobtrusively with the comforts of the 20th century.
The exterior facade includes a Palladian window & an impressive fanlight over the front entry.
There is plenty of room to roam, both inside and out, with over 3,500 square feet of living space & 4.5 acres of land — including meadows, gardens, and stone walls. Behind the house, the property includes a large period barn.
The house even features central air. It’s obviously well suited for bed & breakfast, antique shop & home, or prestigious residence for the antiques connoisseur. The house has been featured in books & magazines, a truly spectacular property! Check out the rest of the pictures — about 40 of them! — and you’ll agree. To get the houses specs or to contact the Realtor, check out the Realtor.com listing by clicking here.