EAST LITCHFIELD ROAD BUILDINGS
In July of 1936, Miss Edith bought approximately 47 acres from the Beirne family. This property was mostly wooded and was on the north side of East Litchfield Road. It contained a house and several barns. All buildings except for one barn and the house were demolished. The house underwent extensive modernization including electricity, plumbing, and heating. The remaining barn was used for storage and a garage. This became the home of the gardener Alec Derouin and his wife Eva. They lived there until Alec’s death in 1966. There was a short walk from this home to the garden at Underhill.
The second Topsmead State Forest manager, Mort Gunderson, lived there during his stay. The house is currently unoccupied.
In July of 1937, Miss Edith bought about 3 acres from Jacob Hausmann, this property was adjacent to the Beirne family land and contained the house where Mr. Hausmann lived. This property was directly across from the entrance to Underhill. I remember sitting on Mr. Hausmann’s knee when I was a child. In 1943 this house was sold for $300.00 to a Mr. Anderson and moved from the property. The well remained.
In 1948 the guest house was moved across the street from Underhill to this location, a two-car garage added, and provided a home for one of Miss Mary’s and Miss Lucy’s nephews until 1957 when it was returned to Miss Edith. It was then rented out for several years. In 1966 it became the home of Walter Lignor and family, a new Topsmead employee until 1972. We will discuss what happened to this house in a special commentary.
In March of 1966, Miss Edith purchased about 3 acres from Albert Hausmann. This was further east on the North side of East Litchfield Road. This property contained Mr. Hausmann,s home. This became the home of Kenneth Moore and family, a Topsmead employee until 1972. This was the last building added to Topsmead, and we will discuss what happened to this house in a special commentary.
All the buildings discussed in this presentation with the exception of the barns at Terryplace, which were burned to the ground by thieves covering up their crime of stealing state equipment in the later 1970’s and three houses remain at Topsmead to this date.
The three houses which are no longer there were auctioned off, by the State of Connecticut, I believe in 1974, as they did not feel that they could be maintained by the state.
The first of these was what I call the Buell Cottage, later referred to as the maid’s house located directly across the road from the farm manager’s house at the farm proper. It was auctioned for $5,500.00 and moved to its present location at 71 Buell Road.
The second house was the guesthouse, originally located at Underhill, the moved across East Litchfield Road in 1948. This was auctioned for $2,200.00 and was moved to 120 Marsh Road.
The third house was the Albert Hausmann house which was auctioned for $1,400.00 and moved to another location, I don’t know where.