Stonehurst: History of a Vermont Fine Furniture Showroom

Last updated on March 13th, 2019 at 03:15 pm

Stonehurst, circa 1870: Now a Vermont Fine Furniture Showroom
Renovations are underway at Stonehurst, the newest Vermont Fine Furniture Showroom.   This photos was taken circa 1870, about when the 200 year old farmhouse property was sold to Lucretia Kendall by Noyes and Theresa Streeter for a sum of $2000.

I made a visit to our local Vernon History Museum last weekend to learn more about Stonehurst, the 200 year old farmhouse property we recently purchased as the future home for our Vermont Fine Furniture Showroom.  I was lucky enough to run into Peggy Frost, Nancy and Dale Gassett and a few other volunteers who were working in the museum’s gardens.  Peggy knew just where the old photos of Stonehurst were stored so we went inside the museum and spent a few hours pouring through them.

The Original Stonehurst

The original Stonehurst farmhouse was built circa 1800 but I can only find photos going back to 1870 or so.  Near as I can figure, the shot above would have been taken around the time that Stonehurst was sold by Noyes and Theresa Streeter to Lucretia Kendall for a sum of $2000.00.  That was recorded on March 9, 1868.

Pine Top Ski Resort

Stonehurst had a very different life from the 1940s to the 1960s when it operated as a ski resort named Pine Top.  You can see from the photo below that the house looked essentially the same through the ages.  At some point it was painted red over the original white.  And the horse barn-woodshed to the left of the house was converted to a dormitory for overnight skiers.

Stonehurst was known as Pine Top Ski Area, 1940-1960
Stonehurst was known as Pine Top Ski Resort, 1940s-1960s.  Operated by Elsie and Romey Racine, it welcomed up to 26 overnight guests who enjoyed skiing in the winter and traditional Vermont outdoor activities in the summer.

After talking with Barbara Moseley, our Vernon Town Historian, I learned that Pine Top was owned by Romey and Elsie Racine, a couple that moved to Vermont from New Jersey.  “The Racines hosted vacationers and skiers in their welcoming lodge and operated a 3 run ski area with warming hut, equipment rentals and ski patrol.  It was all staffed by local families.”  Pine Top was  set up to lodge up to 26 guests, often accommodating families of students from nearby boarding schools, Northfield Mount Hermon and Deerfield Academy.

Pine Top Ski Area Resort in Vernon, Vermont Circa 1960
This is the “backyard” of Stonhurst when it was Pine Top Ski Area, circa 1960.  What a view!

Stonehurst Tomorrow: A Vermont Fine Furniture Showroom

Happily, Stonehurst looks pretty much the same today as it did 70 years ago when Pine Top was operating.  The property was sold to Bill and Elaine Ellis after Pine Top closed and the Ellis’ transferred it to Vermont Woods Studios in August of this year.  We’re now working with J Coleman + Company Architects and Bob Furlone of American Construction to transform the property into a Vermont Fine Furniture Showroom. The goal is to create a relaxing destination shopping experience for our customers who journey here from all around the Northeast and beyond.

Stonehurst, with it’s beautiful vistas and 100 acres of forested land provides a venue for us to convey our environmental mission and show people where sustainable, handmade furniture comes from.  Stay tuned for progress reports and a grand opening for Stonehurst next Summer.

Stonehurst, 2012. Soon to be Vermont's Premier Fine Furniture Store
Stonehurst, 2012. I took this photos right after we purchased Stonehurst in August.  Now we’re working with J Coleman + Company Architects and Bob Furlone of American Construction to transform Stonehurst into a Vermont Fine Furniture Showroom.  Stay tuned for progress reports and a grand opening next Spring or Summer.

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Trend Alert: What is Green Interior Design?

Last updated on November 4th, 2019 at 01:21 pm

What is Sustainable Interior Design
Interior design is not a new concept. For decades, people have been making a living by creating works of art with furniture and accessories as their palette and empty rooms as their canvas. It is probably not a surprise that fashioning the perfect design for the inside of your home is crucial to how you feel and react in your environment. Interior design is all about aesthetics. It’s about taking items that are visually appealing and combining them with your personality to create something unique and personal to you.

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Stonehurst Fine Furniture Showroom: Repurposing Our Trees

Last updated on December 3rd, 2018 at 02:15 pm

Custom milling by Vince Johnson in Vernon VT
Vince Johnson of Johnson Custom Milling in Vernon, VT is milling trees at Stonehurst that had to be taken down for safety reasons. Now we can use them for future phases of construction at our new Vermont Woods Studios fine furniture showroom.

Since forest conservation is a big part of my mission at Vermont Woods Studios, it’s been a little heart-breaking for me to see some of the 100 year old trees at Stonehurst being taken down. There were a handful that were leaning over the house and garage and Ken insisted that they were a hazard and had to go.

But lucky for me, Vince Johnson of Johnson Custom Milling in Vernon, VT came to the rescue. Vince is milling the trees so we can use them for future phases of construction at Stonehurst, our fine furniture showroom. Here’s a video of his portable sawmill in operation.

Ken and Jeremy Coleman of J Coleman & Company Architects are looking into building a solar kiln to dry the wood so we can use it as soon as possible.

And Dennis has plans to siphon off some of the wood to build bluebird houses, owl boxes and such. It’s turning out to be a fun project after all. Let us know on our Facebook if you have any thoughts or advice for us as we go down this road of renovation at Stonehurst, our future fine furniture showroom. We’ll be posting photos of the transformation and announcing details of our open house as we get closer to completion.

 

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

4 Places To Pick Your Own Blueberries In Vermont

Last updated on January 16th, 2019 at 05:34 pm

Photo via Adam’s Berry Farm’s Facebook Page

While driving on Vermont country roads, it is common to see a sign stating “U-Pick,” meaning you can pick your own seasonal produce at that location.  This time of year is perfect for blueberry picking.  Here at Vermont Woods Studios, we eat, breath, and live all things Vermont 365 days a year, and we want you to experience a Vermont tradition too! We’ve done our research, and have picked out four farms through out Vermont where you can visit and pick your own blueberries.

1. The Apple Barn & Country Bake Shop (Bennington, Vermont)

This is the definition of a one-stop shop to experience Vermont agriculture.  Right now you can pick your own blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries.  Additionally, they have a Complimentary Tour of their 300 acre Apple Orchard, giving you quintessential Vermont photo opportunities. After your tour, you can stop by their bakery, to try a maple creeme (or soft serve ice cream, if you will), one of their 40 homemade treats (including cider donuts) or to grab a cup of Vermont’s Green Mountain Coffee.  This memory-making experience at The Apple Barn & Country Bake Shop will leave you yearning to come back in the fall to visit and pick your own apples.

2.  Boyd Family Farm (Wilmington, Vermont)

The Boyd family has been in the farming business for over 80 years, so you know they’re doing it right! They focus on horticulture, and have become experts in wedding flower designs. Additionally, guests are welcome to the farm to pick your own blueberries!  The Boyd Family Farm is a sponsor of the Deerfield Valley Blueberry Festival (Friday, July 30- Sunday, August 8) this year, which is also located in Wilmington, Vermont.

3. Adam’s Berry Farm (Burlington, Vermont)

When you hear Burlington, Vermont, you think probably think of Lake Champlain and Church Street Marketplace; so you’re probably thinking, “there’s a farm in the city of Burlington?” Yes! The Intervale Center is a nonprofit organization that has a mission to “strengthen community food systems.”  They have 350 acres along the Winooski River, and Adam’s Berry Farm is on that land! They have been “cultivating berries in a unique urban agricultural environment” for 10 years.  Adam’s Berry Farm invites you to pick your own berries from June to mid-October, the berries depending on the season.  Right now is the perfect time to pick your own blueberries right in the city of Burlington!  While you’re there, you can also bike and hike along a variety of trails at the Intervale.

4. Cedar Circle Farm  (Thetford, Vermont)

This is a certified organic vegetable and berry farm and education center close to Norwich, Vermont and Lebanon New Hampshire. In their education center their mission is “to raise public awareness about the importance of local organic agriculture, increase access to quality organic produce for low-income people, and establish models for farm-appropriate alternative energy strategies, and train next-generation farmers.”  In addition to the education center, they also open their farm to the public for berry picking.  You can pick your own certified organic blueberries this month, and head back in October to pick your own pumpkins!

A list of farms, including theses ones, who offer “U-Pick” can be found on the Vermont Agriculture website.  Do you have a favorite place to pick berries? Let us know on our Facebook page!

Heather Barrett is a Marketing Assistant at Vermont Woods Studios, an online furniture gallery which showcases Vermont’s finest wood furniture. Follow our blog to learn about Vermont fine furniture, Vermont happenings, our mission, and our team.

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Loryn Enters The Woods

Last updated on February 28th, 2019 at 04:08 pm

 

 

Loryn loves being outside, playing soft-ball, walking, hiking and staying involved with the agricultural community. Oh… and harvesting cranberries!

Please help me welcome Loryn, our new staff member to Vermont Woods Studios.  Loryn joins us as a Marketing Assistant. Along with her talent for writing and communications, she brings a passion for nature and conservation.

 

As a senior at UMass Amherst Loryn has developed her own individual curriculum in Outreach and Communications in Conservation.  She’s had a long-standing committment to sustainable agriculture, having worked with the National Association of Conservation Districts NACD, the Natural Resources Conservation Service NRCS and Future Farmers of America FFA.

Loryn’s already busy working with Manjula and Kendall on improving our website and putting her writing skills to work by editing and blogging.  She’ll be involved in many other aspects of our work down the road as we continue to discover her endless enthusiasm and creativity.

Welcome to the Woods, Loryn.  We’re glad you’re here!

 

 

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.