Yard of the Month July 2016 – York’s Finest

Get ready to take a step back in time with our featured “Yard of the Month” for July. While it has not been confirmed exactly what year the house was built, it has been viewed on a map dating back to 1860.  This farm was one of several purchased by Carey Etnier for the purpose of creating Wyndham Hills.  Mr. Etnier’s daughter, Virginia, and her husband, Admiral Charles Chillingworth, used this home as their summer cottage after moving from York to Maine.

The current owners, George and Jackie Lapes, purchased the property back in 1995. At that time, the house was nearly hidden from view by overgrown lilacs, trees, and weeds.  The original home, a Pennsylvania German farmhouse, faced south overlooking the area that would become Wyndham South.  The house was built with what is known as balloon construction and the foundation is made of stone.  Historians from the Heritage Trust believe that the wide vertical planks that run from the foundation to the attic came from a 1700’s era barn.  The kitchen had a stone wall with a cooking fireplace, which has been preserved. The mud and horsehair mortar needed to be removed and replaced. The second floor rooms still retain the original board and batten doors with thumb latches. Throughout the renovations, many artifacts were found including horseshoes, handmade nails, keys, and shards of pottery, crocks, and dinnerware. Some of the dishes were flow blue china and mulberry ware, which are prized by antique collectors.

Trump Lawn and Land Company recently had the unique opportunity to enhance the outdoor courtyard area of the home. The space has now become a focal point of the home, and to the homeowners. The original vision for the space was to create an outdoor room to showcase perennials while keeping them safe from deer. “The courtyard has become our favorite outdoor area for relaxation and meditation. Our visitors feel like they’ve been transported to an English country garden”, said Jackie. George and Jackie both complemented the work recently completed in this area of their yard by stating, “Trump Lawn and Land made my dream a reality that exceeded our expectations. They kept their promises in a timely and professional manner.  I’m looking forward to working with them on future projects and highly recommend them to my friends and neighbors”.

As you continue to walk around the property, there are remnants of stonework, an old irrigation system and even and old outdoor summer kitchen – dating back to the 1800’s and mid 1900’s. Several walkways and pathways will take you on a visual tour of many different flowers and plants that can be found around the yard. At the base of the stonewall which spans the lower terrace, George and Jackie still find oyster shells and metal cages from champagne bottles while working in the border gardens.  These remnants serve as reminders of the happy years spent here by the Chillingworths. However, this doesn’t compare to the happy days and years that George and Jackie Lapes have spent here – and they are looking forward to many more to come!

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