250 Years Strong

250 years ago, Colonel William Williams moved his family from Massachusetts to the still-new town of Marlboro Vermont and to the land that houses the Colonel Williams Inn today. The house and barn were constructed from trees felled on the property – which is kind of cool to think about. We have some trees that escaped and are now more than 300 years old. History vibrates through each foundation stone.

So – it’s pretty cool living in such an old structure. I thought that I’d give y’all a peek at (what some people think) is the creepiest part of the house: the basement. In the original section, the field stones – also probably from the property – were simply stacked one atop of the other:

Stacked stone foundation
Stacked stone foundation: this is the base of the original fireplace from 1769.
stacked stone shelf
Stone shelf in the 1821 section of the basement. You can see that they started using mortar between the stones.
terra cotta drain pipe
The remains of the original terra cotta drain system in the basement.
lath and plaster wall
Back of a lath and plaster wall showing the keys which keep the plaster on the wall. The plaster probably has cow hair instead of the usual horse hair since the property was a dairy farm for 200 years.
Wooden support beam with bark
A support beam under the 1821 section of the home. This tree was most likely cut down on the property. They even left the bark on!
Wooden door into dark basement
This door separates the 1821 section of the basement from the 1769 section. Note the stone floors and wide planking on the door.

We are working to make the basement a little more “hospitable” so that in the future we can give tours any guest who wants one. Just think about how much this basement has seen – it was built before the United States were united, and even before Vermont organized itself into the Republic of Vermont. More on that in another post!

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