Sitting in the heart of potato country, this roomy Victorian in Houlton enjoys all the benefits of a shire town.
Photographs by Kevin Bennett
Several striking Victorian homes reflect the prosperity and promise that followed the railroads into the Aroostook County seat of Houlton in the late 19th century. The New Brunswick and Canada Railway, which extended its line to Houlton in 1870, and the Bangor and Aroostook Railroad, which connected the community to central Maine in 1894, were a boon to the local potato industry. Merchants, businessmen, and statesmen built fine homes befitting a town on the rise. Among them: Charles P. Barnes, a future chief justice of the Maine Supreme Court, who lived in this circa 1900 vernacular Queen Anne.
WHY RESCUE IT
This home has the potential for great curb appeal, from the eye-catching clapboard-and-shingle exterior to the side porch that connects a carriage barn. Inside are lovely window and door casings, wood floors, and wainscoting. Afternoon light illuminates a stained-glass window over a winding wooden staircase. Pocket doors between the dining and living rooms open up space for an extra-long holiday dinner table. Telecommuters will appreciate the carriage barn, which can be converted to an office or a studio.
WHAT YOU’RE IN FOR
Major roof repairs and electrical and plumbing upgrades. Some rotten siding needs to be replaced before the exterior is scraped and painted. The side porch also requires touch-ups and fresh paint and the front steps must be rebuilt. Old wallpaper should be removed, and the floors refinished. The antique claw-foot tub is a plus, but the new owners will likely want to install a shower as well.
Location: 33 Park St., Houlton
Asking Price: $39,900
Agent: Becky Day;