Friday, April 18, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

On the Market: Historic New Hope home for $1.95M

This historic New Hope property was previously a flax and hemp stone mill in the 1800s.
This historic New Hope property was previously a flax and hemp stone mill in the 1800s. Jesse Darlington
This historic New Hope property was previously a flax and hemp stone mill in the 1800s. Gallery: On the Market: Historic New Hope home for $1.95M

On the Market profiles homes for sale in the Philadelphia region.

When Peggy and Bob Krist purchased the historic New Hope property located at 10 Old Mill Road in 2000, there wasn’t much to show for it.

Built in 1825, the former flax and hemp stone mill fell to ruin in the mid-1860s. Since then, it had not been touched.

That’s until the Krists arrived with their three young sons.

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  • “All that was left was just three stone walls,” Peggy Krist said. “There really wasn't anything there, but that’s what attracted me. There was nothing in between the walls; not a floor board, no surprises. Everything had fallen through ruin.”

    Although the property was filled with ivy and debris, the Krists saw great potential in the Bucks County property, as it was secluded on two acres in a serene setting along the Ingham Creek.

    “I love a challenge,” Krist said. “I’m a big ‘do-it-yourself-er.’ I come from a family that’s always doing fix-up projects.”

    Plus, the property was within walking distance of their children’s school and closer to town – two things they were looking for when they decided to leave Solebury Township just a few miles away.

    Krist and her husband, a freelance photographer whose work has been featured in the National Geographic, hired local contractors Demusz Brothers Inc., and started to follow their vision. They only had one restriction: to avoid knocking down the stone walls.

    “We first cleared all the ivy and garbage that was lying around,” Krist said. “Then we put in the basement floor and footing, and started framing inside the stone walls.”

    Little by little the home started coming together, and in less than a year, the 4,039-square-foot property was reborn, with five bedrooms and three baths.

    Also included on the property, dubbed “The Mill in Manchester Valley,” is a separate two-level carriage house that has three baths, three bedrooms, a kitchen, and a one-car garage.

    The main home is three stories high. The first level includes the master suite, living room, dining room and eat-in kitchen, which overlooks the grounds, trees and pond.

    The second floor has two bedrooms and a large office. The top floor features a loft.

    The three original stone walls are still standing, but the newer walls the Krists put in are made of stucco.

    “We made it like the old fashioned Dutch stucco that is very traditional to old houses around Bucks County,” Krist said. “It has all the character and the history, but all of the mechanical parts are new. That’s the beauty of the place.”

    Despite the historical significance, one of the most meaningful things about living on the property for Krist was the family memories. She not only spent her time there raising her sons, but her husband’s parents lived in the nearby carriage house for many years.

    “To be able to have three generations all living together was very special,” she said.

    The home is located on a cul-de-sac right behind the library, and is within walking distance to downtown shops.

    “The setting of this property is very unique in New Hope,” Krist said. “It’s a quiet setting. You feel like you’re out in the countryside but you can go right down the road to restaurants, the bookstore, [and] the Bucks County Playhouse.”

    After more than a decade in the home, the Krists are ready for the next chapter of their lives and have put their home on the market for $1.95 million. They're looking to downsize and take on their next renovation project.

    Click to view listing >

    Lauren Mennen